Get unlimited digital access to $0.99 for 4 weeks.

Emma Watson talks about acting 'paralysis' after 'Harry Potter'

You may have noticed that "Harry Potter" star Emma Watson has taken un-Hermione Granger-like roles as of late. 

That's after the 23-year-old stopped acting altogether for a bit and briefly enrolled at Brown University in 2009, then dropped out before completing a degree. Post-"Potter," the child star, who skyrocketed to fame in the big screen-adaptations of J.K. Rowling's series about a boy wizard, took on a small role in "My Week With Marilyn" in 2011, fully returned to acting in "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" and made serious fun of herself in the self-deprecating raunch-com "This Is the End."

But Watson said that she, and even her agent, were "surprised" by her return to acting after the juggernaut that was "Harry Potter" and the eight feature films.

PHOTOS: 50 most beautiful female celebrities

"I was really unsure, but then I read the script for 'The Perks of Being a Wallflower,' and falling in love with that and then having such a great experience on that movie kind of sealed the deal for me," Watson told Entertainment Weekly.

"I stopped intellectualizing it, and it became much more instinctual. I just got the bug and got very driven all of a sudden, which I really wasn't before. But I'm so happy. It's all felt very new to me, really."

So she's saying she really wasn't all that driven during "Harry Potter's" decade-long run? Muggle hearts are breaking everywhere.

Part of the struggle stemmed from being pushed into Hermione-esque roles and the media wondering if she was capable of acting outside that type.

PHOTOS: Hermione Granger through the years

"For a while I kind of bought into the hype of, 'Will they ever be able to play anything else?' It gave me a sense of paralysis and stage fright for a while," she said. "And then a professor told me that they didn't think I should act, either. So I was really grappling with it and wasn't feeling good about it. And then, I don't know … it got so bad and people had put me in a box so much that it started pissing me off. I suddenly wanted to prove them wrong. It gave me fuel, in a way. I'm not sure why that shift happened."

That could explain why she took the role of Nicki in Sofia Coppola's teen heist film, "The Bling Ring."

"Really, I was open-minded about doing anything, but the one thing I didn't want to do was get myself into a corset because I was worried I'd never get out again," she said in the May 2013 issue of GQ. "I knew it would be a really comfortable thing to do, but I felt … I had to dive into something really different. This has been a really big departure for me; it's a really big character. That's so exciting for me because it meant I was really acting."

It seems that was around the time the former Burberry model made an "adult decision" about her career, instead of resigning herself to having it be made for her. 

"I wanted to make a conscious adult decision that this was what I wanted to pursue, because that decision was made for me as a 9-year-old," she added. "I had no idea what I wanted. I had no idea who I was, really. So I wanted to step away and make sure this is what I wanted to pour my life and my energy and my blood, sweat and tears into."

And that's precisely what she seems to be doing in her upcoming project, "Noah." She plays Noah's adopted daughter Ila in the biblically inspired Darren Aronfsky film, which also stars her "Perks" costar Logan Lerman, plus Anthony Hopkins and Jennifer Connelly. Russell Crowe plays the titular prophet. 

Shocking, right?

Entertainment Weekly's New Hollywood issue hits stands Aug. 9.


Megan Fox pregnant with baby No. 2

VIDEO: Kim Kardashian shows her face for first time post-baby

Jamie Lee Curtis home, resting after serious car accident in Venice

Follow @NardineSaad

Follow Ministry of Gossip @LATcelebs.

PHOTOS AND MORE: PHOTOS: Celebrity portraits by The Times PHOTOS: Royal visit to New Zealand and Australia PHOTOS: 2013 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
  • Shi Scott's 'American Idol' run ends
    Shi Scott's 'American Idol' run ends

    Maryland's Shi Scott's run on "American Idol" ended Thursday, as she did not earn enough votes to be among the top eight female contestants moving on to the next round.

  • Future Islands singer and Earl Sweatshirt together on new track
    Future Islands singer and Earl Sweatshirt together on new track

    Here's something we didn't expect to see (or hear) today: Future Islands singer Samuel Herring and Los Angeles rapper Earl Sweatshirt have collaborated on a new song called "Play It Cool." Stream it above, or click here to go to, which premiered it today.

  • Harrison Ford 'banged up' but recovering from plane crash
    Harrison Ford 'banged up' but recovering from plane crash

    Dr. Sanjay Khurana was close to finishing a golf game when a vintage plane clipped a tree and "dropped like a rock" onto the next hole's green. He rushed to the crash, finding a pilot bleeding from a deep gash in his head.

  • 'Scandal' recap, 'The Lawn Chair'
    'Scandal' recap, 'The Lawn Chair'

    Back from her kidnapping, Olivia is having a difficult time dealing with her emotions, so she lies to Jake about her whereabouts (giving Scott Foley a 10-second on-screen appearance) and throws herself into work. Which is what a lot of people do, when dealing with their personal lives seems...

  • 'Unfinished Business' is indeed unfinished
    'Unfinished Business' is indeed unfinished

    The piece of business that's most unfinished in the desperate comedy "Unfinished Business" is the wan hodgepodge of a script by Steve Conrad, a talented screenwriter ("The Promotion," "The Pursuit of Happyness") who should've known better. It's remarkable to think star Vince Vaughn, helmer...

  • Review: 'The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel'
    Review: 'The Second Best Exotic Marigold Hotel'

    Three years ago, on a somewhat different scale, the success of the first "Best Exotic Marigold Hotel" was weirdly akin to the success of the first "Avengers" movie. Both relied on ensemble superheroics and charmingly fractious banter among movie stars. This year brings sequels to both films....