Alan Rickman Vented About Emma Watson’s ‘Diction’ in Early ‘Potter’ Films: ‘These Kids Need Directing’

Alan Rickman expressed frustrations in his now-published diary while making 2004’s Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, which he went on to praise after its release

Alan Rickman’s posthumously published diary entries reveal frustrations over his Harry Potter child costars’ performances — including Emma Watson’s accent work.

In Madly, Deeply: The Diaries of Alan Rickman, which were recently excerpted online by The Guardian, Rickman wrote that Watson’s “diction is this side of Albania at times” while the production shot Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban in summer 2003.

“[Director] Alfonso [Cuarón] was quietly ballistic with me,” Rickman wrote on July 30, 2003, after sarcastically describing a “fabulous start” of a day on the film’s set. “I love him too much to let it last too long so I wailed offset and we sorted it out. He’s under the usual HP pressure and even he starts rehearsing cameras before actors, and these kids need directing.”

“They don’t know their lines and Emma’s diction is this side of Albania at times,” Rickman added. “Plus my so-called rehearsal is with a stand-in who is French.”

Rickman had also jotted down thoughts on Daniel Radcliffe’s potential in the film industry earlier that year, according to the excerpt.

“He’s so concentrated now. Serious and focused — but with a sense of fun,” Rickman wrote of Radcliffe, who turned 14 during production on the third Potter entry. “I still don’t think he’s really an actor but he will undoubtedly direct/produce. And he has such quiet, dignified support from his parents. Nothing is pushed.”

Though Rickman’s diary entries show private criticisms of how the Potter films were handled throughout his time playing Professor Severus Snape, the actor wrote that Cuarón “has done an extraordinary job” after attending Prisoner of Azkaban‘s world premiere.

“It is a very grown-up movie, so full of daring that it made me smile and smile,” Rickman wrote on May 23, 2004. “Every frame of it is the work of an artist and storyteller. Stunning effects that are somehow part of the life of the film, not show-off stunts.”

Rickman died of pancreatic cancer in January 2016 at age 69. Watson paid tribute to him at the time, writing on social media, “I’m very sad to hear about Alan today. I feel so lucky to have worked and spent time with such a special man and actor. I’ll really miss our conversations. RIP Alan. We love you.”

Madly, Deeply: The Diaries of Alan Rickman, the actor’s published diary entries that span 25 years of his life, is now available wherever books are sold.

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