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As 'Harry Potter' Film Franchise Ends, What's Next for Its Young Stars?

Harry potter kids

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, The eighth and final film in the Harry Potter series will be released July 15, marking the end of the franchise, and fans are very anxious to see stars Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint on the big screen as J.K. Rowling's iconic characters for the last time. But many of you might ask, "What’s next for these young Harry Potter actors?"

Many of us cannot imagine actor Daniel Radcliffe in another role, because when we see him all we think of is Harry Potter. Radcliffe first appeared in the title role in 2001, when he was only 12 years old; he turns 22 on July 23. But while we can all say safely that Radcliffe has delivered outstanding performances as Harry, where will his career go from here?

Radcliffe has had success on Broadway, starring in Equus and How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, but where will his film career take him next? Harry Potter has been his primary role for the past decade. He certainly doesn’t need to book more films if he doesn't want to, having reportedly made $40 million just from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, parts 1 and 2 (his co-stars Watson and Grint each earned about $30 million for the two films).

Nevertheless, his next film will be The Woman in Black, set for release in 2012. Radcliffe has also been rumored since last year to star as Paul Baumer in a new film adaptation of All Quiet on the Western Front, but production is not scheduled to begin until Spring 2012, and details remain vague. Set during World War I, there would be no more wands or magic facing Radcliffe -- just the atrocities of war. How will Radcliffe adapt to this new on-set experience?

In a new interview with Hollywood 411, Radcliffe sounds like he's looking forward to new projects, and isn't feeling any withdrawal from the magic spells and broomsticks:  "I miss all the things I expected to miss. I miss the crew, and I miss the cast, and I miss getting to work with some of my best friends every day. And there are equally things like quidditch, that I will never miss."

"The one thing that I would love to do ultimately is direct," he adds. "Maybe in the next ten years, I'll try to do that and that will be a hell of a challenge."

Emma Watson, meanwhile, also became a star in the Harry Potter movies beginning at age 11, and she is only now beginning to take her first non-Harry Potter onscreen roles. She is currently filming The Perks of Being a Wallflower, co-starring Logan Lerman and Paul Rudd. She also recently wrapped shooting My Week with Marilyn, starring Michelle Williams as Marilyn Monroe; the film is currently in post-production and will be released later this year. Yet Watson told interviewers that right now, she wants to focus on the "student life," so audiences might not see her in any more films in the near future.

Lastly, Rupert Grint might turn out to have the most consistent movie career of all of the Potter kids. He has already appeared in several films outside of J.K. Rowling's creations (more than Radcliffe and Watson combined, in fact), and will be seen in at least four productions in the next year. One of these is a new comedy titled Eddie the Eagle -- about England's first ski jumper to enter the Winter Olympics -- which is in pre-production.

All of these actors, in some way, must be a little sad that the Harry Potter series that made them household names has come to an end, but they all have a very bright future ahead of themselves. For a decade, Harry Potter has won box offices, and made millions upon millions of dollars. Thanks to these three very talented young actors, who made J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter books come to life on the big screen. We look forward to watching the rest of their sure-to-be long careers.

Watch the official trailer for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2:

-- Jake Robbins

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