Weekly Reader Interviews Daniel Radcliffe
Apr 21, 2004
Weekly Reader has this interview with Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter).Weekly Reader, used in schools in the US, has a feature (April 23rd issue,Grade 4) about training the animals in the Potter films, which you can read below. Thanks Robin!
“Gary Gero says he has the best job in the world. As one of Hollywood’s top animal trainers, Gero prepares his animal ‘talent’ for their onscreen performances.
Recently, Gero completed work for the movie ‘Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban,’ which opens in theaters June 4. His team, which included six trainers for this movie, worked with dozens of animals.Their lineup for the film included cats, dogs, owls, rats, crows–and even a hippo!
Fang the dog, Mrs. Norris the cat, Scabbers the rat, and Hedwig the owl star in this film. They also appeared in the previous ‘Harry Potter’ films.
To train the animals, Gero and his team reward them with food and praise when they follow instructions correctly. Owls may get a reputation for being wise, but Gero knows differently. Gero told Weekly Reader that Hedwig learned to fly in front of a fan-a trick that was mastered after six months of training.
‘Owls are difficult to train because they’re not very clever,’ he said. ‘It takes a long time to teach them things.’ “
Note: we are uncertain about the hippo part-perhaps they meant
the hippogriff (Buckbeak)