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Father We Love Best: Mark Williams Talks His Role as Arthur Weasley

HBP Film
Posted by: sue
June 24, 2009, 08:27 PM

Tonight we have a bit of a treat as there is a new and rare in depth interview online in the LA Times with actor Mark Williams and his role as Arthur Weasley. In this interview we learn Mark, who has protrayed the Patriarch of the Weasley family in all Harry Potter films, read the series long before he was cast in the part. He offers his thoughts on Arthur, and has high praise for author J.K. Rowling, and the decision to make Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows into two films. While the entire interview is well worth the read, some fascinating comments can be found below:

So, how much freedom did you get to shape Arthur Weasley to your liking?
Well, in the book he's kind of balding and said to Chris [Columbus] 'Well, do you want me to shave my head or something' and he said 'No! No, don't do that!' He looked at me and said 'Don't take it so literally.' J.K. Rowling has been very good about that. She's allowed the films to develop sort of in parallel to the books, but she hasn't changed the sort of characterization of the books either ... And with "Deathly Hallows," I think for the first time, as the books got bigger, Steve Kloves' job got harder and harder. But having two parts to the last book is good. I'm a big champion of it, and not just because I'm in them. She [J.K. Rowling] has such a mathematical brain, or better put, a musical brain and all the themes and the melodies were resolved in the last book.

Arthur Weasley's role has increased through the series -- how did you approach him having a more active role?
I didn't know, but I believe that she has said that he's the only functional father left. Actually, though, I think he's the only functional father. Lucius isn't a functional father. "Proto" fathers Sirius and Dumbledore are dead, and there's no nice way to put that, so he's the only good image of a father really. But you should ask her about that, and believe me when we finish I will ask her.

So, the movies still have the whimsy, but they're getting a little darker it seems. How have you and your character dealt with that?
Well, it was always dark ... John Williams picked it up perfectly, I mean with music being 30% of the film .. I mean, you know, his parents were killed. There's just these great Dickensian -- I've never said that before and I kind of wished I hadn't -- but these great big scenes that you can play on the cello, you know what I mean. As time's gone on, I've just been more and more impressed about her (J.K. Rowling) sense of geography and knowing where she's going. There's a big map in there and I've never felt that any of the concerns or themes or problems have been swept under the carpet.

What's nice is that going into the last two films, thinking that this is a great pleasure to play this character .. and it's great that when we finish, we're gonna BE finished. Not gonna be left hanging.

Is there anything that Arthur Weasley has done in the books that you wish he had done in the film?
Yes! Well, I talked about this with Christopher Columbus and he was very clear that this was not gonna happen. But when we first see Arthur Weasley, he arrives home and a load of gnomes is eating in his garden and he kind of zaps them ... I so wish I could've done that.

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889 Points

He’s perfect for the portrayal of Arthur. Maybe his reading the book gave him a better understanding of the character. I love his character. Arthur’s so caring to Harry and a great person for Harry to talk to, and Mark Williams plays the character greatly.

Posted by molly43 on June 25, 2009, 08:22 PM report to moderator
478 Points

He is Arthur. No doubt about it. He plays his part perfectly and understands the character. Kudos to Mark..keep up the good work. Can’t wait to see him the last movies.

Posted by beewell on June 25, 2009, 08:26 PM report to moderator
5413 Points

Great Interview!! Go Arthur!!<3

Posted by Harry Potter 4 Ever!! on June 25, 2009, 09:51 PM report to moderator
2417 Points

Love the way he portrays Arthur

Posted by Hagrid 713 (ROAR) on June 25, 2009, 11:08 PM report to moderator
491 Points

mark is the perfect arthur!!

Posted by megan_702*ROAR* on June 25, 2009, 11:27 PM report to moderator
80450 Points

Sometimes Casting Directors get it soooo right!

Posted by Won_Two on June 26, 2009, 01:25 AM report to moderator
373 Points

i think it’s interesting, his take on fathers. He said he’s the only functional one left after dumbledore and sirius die, however, I don’t believe either of them were actually functional fathers. I love sirius more than any other literary character ever (except maaaybe darcy, eh they’re tied) but he was never a functional father. he didn’t know how to be and he didnt have the best example. dumbledore was raising harry for slaughter (though that’s harsh, it’s true with just a fools hope that he could survive). neither was a functioning father. Arthur Weasley was the only functional father in the series ever

Posted by Sirius' Lover <3<3 [ROAR] on June 26, 2009, 03:15 AM report to moderator
8256 Points

He the perfect Arthur! Great interview. I love reading interviews from the extended cast members!

Posted by spicefan78 OoM1 {ROAR!} on June 26, 2009, 05:21 AM report to moderator
4452 Points

cool!! i like that interview! the LA times have a had a lot of interviews recently!

6972 Points

Show your Support! Go GREEN for IRAN!!! xD

Posted by kraamerXmich ♠{WBM}♠ [Pigeon] on June 26, 2009, 08:18 AM report to moderator
928 Points

I wish could have zapped the gnomes too :-)

Posted by sessionka oom4 CW on June 26, 2009, 09:07 AM report to moderator
6921 Points

Wonderful. I love hearing about the actors being enthusiastic about their characters and the films. He’s a great Mr. Weasley.

Posted by badger666 on June 26, 2009, 11:29 AM report to moderator
241 Points

Yeahh let’s see some gnome-zapping action from Arthur! I always thought they could have done so much more with Arthur in the films.

Posted by Linnyish on June 26, 2009, 10:17 PM report to moderator
783 Points

I’d never read an interview w/ him..I’m glad I did..he really fits the part :)

Posted by Mary11_hplvr*WBM* on June 28, 2009, 06:20 AM report to moderator
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