A short but sweet article about Helena’s time on the set of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.
In deference to those who’d like to remain spoiler free, let’s just say Helena Bonham Carter certainly leaves her mark as the diabolically dark witch Bellatrix Lestrange in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows — Part 1. But the actress, who already terrorized young audiences this year as the Red Queen in Alice in Wonderland, wasn’t originally supposed to play Bellatrix. Helen McCrory (The Queen) originally had the part for 2007′s Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, but had to bow out after she got pregnant. “So they came to me,” says Bonham Carter. “And I loved it. I love magic, I love witches, I love the whole [Harry Potter] world. I was all too happy to play a witch.” (McCrory was eventually cast as Bellatrix’s sister Narcissa Malfoy for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and the two Deathly Hallows films.) So how did Bonham Carter bring one of Harry Potter’s biggest enemies on screen? When she first showed up on set for the fifth Harry Potter film, “There wasn’t a huge amount on the page originally,” says the actress, 44. “I think I probably made her a bit more insane and unhinged then she was meant to be. I wanted to be conspicuous. So the [rotten] teeth was my idea, because she had been in prison so long. I wanted her to be quite savage. And I wanted that corset. It was sort of an Amazon thing. Bellatrix means a warrior. I wanted her to be sexy and revolting at the same time. At one point she might have been attractive, but no longer.” Most important of all: Bellatrix’s dense thatch of hair. “Here’s the thing: If you have messy hair, you don’t have to worry all the time about making it all perfect. It was a lot to do with keeping [all the hair and makeup people] away.” Of course, playing one of Voldemort’s most eager minions wasn’t just about the look; you also had to get the magic right. “We went to wand school for about three weeks,” Bonham Carter says of herself and her fellow Death Eaters. “We took it very very seriously. I actually got a wand blister on the [middle] finger. They kind of had different names for all the different moves, Latin ones. It was sort of based on fencing. You also always have to have an intention behind the spell. You just feel totally emasculated on set when you’re waving a bit a wood around and nothing’s coming from it. It’s very difficult to remember that you’ve actually got the intention to kill behind it. It’s not all fun and laughs; it’s actually quite hard work.” So when Bonham Carter got to cast a spell as Bellatrix actually setting Hagrid’s hut ablaze in The Half-Blood Prince, the chance to get to see the fruits of her magical labor with her own eyes was, according to Bonham Carter, quite like a rather popular iPhone game about a pack of furious fowls. “I actually pointed my wand and it blew up! The power! The power was just like Angry Birds, but big [as] life.” Naturally.
Source: Entertainment Weekly
ComingSoon.net sat down with Helena for a fairly brisk and casual interview with her lounging on the couch before a day of TV interviews, and they were able to cover a lot of ground including her working relationship with Tim and whether she might appear in one of his upcoming projects. Read one question below, and click [full-link]here[/full-link] for the rest of the interview! :laughing:
ComingSoon.net: How were you approached to play…
Helena Bonham Carter: The Queen Mum? Tom asked me to do it. He sent it to me, pretty certain, and I said, “Wow, great part for the boys.” (laughs) But I did think she was written with great wit and dryness, but I did have other obligations and duties, because I was doing “Harry Potter” at the same time, so I did say, “No.” It’s kind of like the Queen Mum turned Bertie’s marriage proposal down twice and the third time she accepted, and that was kind of like me and Tom really. I kept saying “No.” In fact, I don’t think I said “Yes” but I ended up on the set, dressed as the Queen Mum. Continue Reading…
Helena has revealed that she took a huge risk taking on the role as the Queen Mother in her upcoming film The King’s Speech as she was still contracted to play Bellatrix Lestrange in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, a predicament that could have ‘brought down’ the film that is now a front runner for the Oscars next year. When Tom Hooper, the director, asked her to play Queen Elizabeth in the film she initially turned it down; “Tom asked me to do it… but I did have other obligations and duties, because I was doing Harry Potter at the same time, so I did say, ‘No’… I kept saying ‘No’. In fact, I don’t think I said ‘Yes’ but I ended up on the set, dressed as the Queen Mum…”. She admitted that it was risky as the Deathly Hallows team could have called her away from the set at any time, and she’d be legally obliged to comply: “You know what they did? It was completely illegal and really quite risky. In fact, fantastically risky. Harry Potter never released me. They said ‘Even if you work on weekends, we get first choice’, so potentially, I could have brought down The King’s Speech.”> You can read an interview with Helena in Jamie’s post above.
Source: Contact Music
I have to say, I was surprised when I read this! Helena has been taking parenting classes to improve her skills as a mother.
Harry Potter actress Helena Bonham Carter has admitted enrolling in parenting classes to learn how to become a better mother. The 44-year-old, who has two children with long-term boyfriend, film director Tim Burton, told America’s E! Entertainment station: ‘I’m not working right now and I need to learn to be a mum. ‘It’s much harder than being an actress. I’m taking parenting classes. You know, no one ever taught me what to do.’ The actress spoke out at the New York premiere of Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part One, which also opened in the UK this weekend. She plays Bellatrix Lestrange in the series. Bonham Carter, mother of Billy Raymond, seven, and Nell, three, said: ‘The classes are teaching me some interesting things. You’ve got to get the children to think for themselves. It’s a relief. I don’t have to know everything.’ Bonham Carter has previously spoken of her own difficult childhood. Her mother Elena had a nervous breakdown when Helena was five, and when she was a teenager, her merchant banker father Raymond, then 50, suffered a stroke, leaving him partly paralysed. She added: ‘Having children in my late 30s makes them more precious because you really want them by then. ‘Before you are a mother you never know how much in love you will be. I want to be the best parent I can.’
Source: Daily Mail