Belfast Telegraph

Harry Potter star Jason Isaacs praises JK Rowling for her political commentary

Harry Potter star Jason Isaacs said JK Rowling's magical stories will always be relevant to audiences as he praised the writer for her political commentary.

Speaking about how she combined serious themes with fantasy in both the seven-book series about the boy wizard and the Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them screenplay, he said she had a "rare gift" that keeps fans engaged.

Isaacs, who plays the slippery Lucius Malfoy, told the Press Association: " I think that she is a magnificent storyteller who tells stories that are completely contemporary and resonant with the world that we live in.

"There are things ripped from the headlines, but all through the prism of her amazingly fantastical imagination."

Asked whether the divide between good and evil in the stories mirrored the current political climate, he added: "It's easy to say that it's about the rise of the right all over the world and the anti-immigration thing - certainly when it comes to Malfoy and the Death Eaters - but it also seems to be about the rise of fascism in the 1940s.

"I'm sure there will never be times when what she has written isn't relevant."

His comments came during the launch of the new Forbidden Forest section of the famous Harry Potter Warner Brothers Studio Tour in Watford, where he was joined by Luna Lovegood actress Evanna Lynch and Weasley twins, James and Oliver Phelps.

Lynch, 25, added that there is still more scope for fresh tales to be born out of Rowling's detailed wizarding world.

"Jo was so detailed in her notes and her back stories and she just left so many places that she can take this story," she said.

"Now, having spent some time away from it, her mind has started to wander to those places and what would happen in other situations... I think there are a lot of ways it could go."

The new part of the studio tour, which opens at the end of the month, will let visitors walk through the recreated Hogwarts wilderness and meet some of the dreaded creatures lurking within.

Effects designer Nick Dudman said: "This is creepy and dark and there are things in here that look at you and think 'lunch'.

"It's a different experience entirely and I will be interested to see when the first small children come through just how good the atmosphere is."

Speaking about the enduring global love for all things Potter, he added: "I have worked on a lot of movies over the years, but with the Potters the fan base is so strong it never seems to die down.

"It's a phenomenon more than anything else, it's a wonderful thing and I'm very, very proud to be part of it."

::The Forbidden Forest will be open to studio visitors from March 31.

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