As the klutzy Ron Weasley, actor Rupert Grint was one of the standout performers in the Harry Potter movie adaptations. Indeed, Grint was picked out by many to be Hollywood’s next big thing once the series had wrapped. For ten years of his life Grint was closely attached to the franchise, but in 2011 the last Harry Potter movie was released. And since then, things haven’t quite turned out for Grint like people thought they would. Indeed, his presence on screens both big and small has been relatively minor, so it begs the question: where exactly did Rupert Grint go, and more importantly, why? Well, the answer may shock even the most ardent Potterhead…
Although he rose to prominence when he was just a kid, English performer Rupert Grint didn’t start life dreaming of becoming an actor. In fact, when he was younger he harbored ambitions of being an ice cream man. However, fate had something very different in store for the likable redhead…
Born on August 24, 1988, Grint was your average kid growing up. He’s stated in the past that he wasn’t a troublemaker at school; in fact, he was pretty well behaved. It was during his schooldays that Grint first began to take an interest in performing. He appeared in a handful of small plays and also had acting lessons at the weekend.
However, for Grint, acting wasn’t the be-all and end-all that it was for many young wannabes. Speaking to Entertainment Weekly in 2017, Grint recalled, “When I started, [acting] was never something that I aspired to do. I did acting with school plays and stuff like that. But it was never something that I actively dreamed of.”
“I mean, I fell in love with [acting] while I was doing it,” he went on. “But I definitely did think, ‘Is this really what I want to do?’” It’s likely his mind was easily swayed, though. After all, when you get asked to appear in the Harry Potter movies at such a young age, it’s probably not the easiest thing to turn down…
You see, despite only having made brief appearances on stage, when he was 11 Grint landed the part of Ron Weasley in the big budget motion picture Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. It was an amazing turn of events for someone who had never even appeared in the movies before.
Moreover, the 2001 movie turned out to be a huge success at the box office, grossing a phenomenal $974 million worldwide. The magical film adaptation of J.K. Rowling’s popular novel captivated audiences with its fantastic special effects and sense of wonderment.
Grint definitely found himself in the comedic role as Ron Weasley, nailing the part thanks to his ability to channel the character’s immature but harmless persona. However, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was only the beginning for the overnight movie star.
Sequels to the film followed, with Grint reprising his role in a further seven Harry Potter flicks. Yet, when the series finally did reach its conclusion in 2011, the franchise’s other major stars, Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson, quickly landed on their feet. But for Rupert Grint? It was a different story.
Unfortunately, we’ve not seen much of Grint since 2011 – something that the star claims is down to his own personal decisions. Once entrenched in a long-running movie series, these days the roving redhead comes across more as a free spirit than a fixed member of a particular camp.
Explaining his decision to find his own path, Grint, now aged 29, told Entertainment Weekly in 2017, “I wanted to live a little bit. I felt like I’d missed out on a lot. Being in that adult environment from such an early age, it was nice to just be away from it and not have any kind of commitments at all, and just be a bit free.”
Clearly, Grint felt he had been deprived of a normal childhood because of his success – even questioning whether he should continue acting at all after Harry Potter. It’s a rather sad revelation considering what a natural talent he is, particularly as far as comedy is concerned.
If nothing else, Grint’s words certainly explain why we didn’t see much of him on our screens after 2011. Admittedly, he made the odd appearance in smaller productions such as 2012’s Cross of Honour and 2013’s The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman and CBGB. Nonetheless, his interest in being in front of the camera appeared to be waning.
With his love of acting fading, then, Grint would go on to pursue other endeavors, including fulfilling his first childhood dream. That’s right: the star got his very own ice-cream truck to drive around in. This hilarious story, which first broke back in 2014, highlighted Grint’s newfound love of relaxation.
He told the Daily Mail that year, “Now I’m starting to enjoy the freedom. I can afford to choose my acting roles carefully and I’m able to enjoy my leisure time. I’m perfectly happy tootling around town in my ice-cream van, haring up the motorway in my Audi, or messing around on my hovercraft in the back garden.”
And although some might think that Grint judges his Harry Potter days with disdain, the actor assures fans this isn’t the case. He told The Independent in 2017, “I look back on it very fondly. We had so much fun. Occasionally I miss that because it was such a great place to be every day.”
However, the fame and special privileges that the part brought him didn’t seem to hold the same appeal after 2011. And speaking to The Daily Telegraph in 2017, it was clear that Grint wasn’t exactly yearning for the bright lights. “Occasionally, if I walk quickly and wear my cap, I can kind of blend in a little bit,” he said. “I do feel like I’m the only person who’s not on Twitter.”
Fans, however, will be happy to know that Grint did make a return of sorts in 2016, following five years of deliberation about his future. He attributes his renewed love of acting down to theatre, where the star spent some time following Harry Potter’s swansong.
He explained to MTV News in 2016, “I want to get back into it, and do new things and new challenges. I love doing theater… that was really educational actually, being onstage. I fell in love with acting again. Now is the time.”
And Grint wasn’t kidding, either. Since 2016, the actor has begun to emerge once again, starring in television shows such as Sick Note and Snatch. In fact, he even made a movie appearance in the French comedy Moonwalkers. Grint may not be as prominent as he once was, then, but he’s slowly making his way back onto our radar again.
Indeed, Grint is currently getting set for another season of both Sick Note and Snatch. It’s anyone’s guess whether Hollywood will come knocking the way it did at the turn of the millennium, but is Grint concerned? That’s a moot point. After all, he appears to have found something that eluded him during his childhood: personal serenity.