Helena Bonham Carter Talks About The “Terrifying” Bellatrix Lestrange


Nov 27, 2010

Posted by John Admin

A new profile from the LA Times Hero Complex blog focuses on Helena Bonham Carter and her infamous portrayal of Bellatrix Lestrange in the “Harry Potter” films.

The actress talks about her career and family, but also explains how she developed Bellatrix’s character for the films.

“Bellatrix has really good fun, and she’s been a bit of surprise to me, in fact’ Bonham Carter said. “It wasn’t really there on the page. When I took it on, I found there wasn’t a huge amount to go by in the script, and I read the book and she wasn’t necessarily on the page there either, so I did ask [director] David Yates if I could bring a bit of other things or are these the Bibles? And he said yes, certainly, and apparently J.K. Rowling was very pleased with it when she saw it, and the childish dimension and the fact that she’s totally savage, that was a bit of departure.”

“I just felt she had to make an impression because there wasn’t much time
in which to do so. And she had to be terrifying. She needed to be
somebody you didn’t know what to feel towards. One moment she’s horribly
revolting but then also weirdly sexy, maybe, or just disturbing to the
mind when you watch her. There’s a lot of decaying, too, with the bad
teeth. She’s been in prison for so long. The mad hair. She’s someone who
has seen better times but still carries herself with the memory of what
she was.”

Bonham Carter also praises the crew working on the Harry Potter films and likens the experience to belonging to a “nice tribe.”

“I love going back year after year. It’s refreshing. A lot of times in this business, it’s so transitory ” it’s just 10 weeks here or there on a movie and then it’s over ’ but to see the same people over all that time, a decade, makes you feel really safe and secure. It was fantastically well-organized, the [assistant directors] are simply unbelievable, the best…It has been perfect for me, and I will miss it.”

More about Helena Bonham Carter and her thoughts about Bellatrix can be read at the LA Times. The interview also has some great information about Bonham Carter’s next film, The King’s Speech.

Thank you Jamie for owling!

44 Responses to Helena Bonham Carter Talks About The “Terrifying” Bellatrix Lestrange

Avatar Imagekatielilly says: I think dhe finnaly got it right in this last movie. It seemed believable and scary. In the earlier movies it seemed too forced and cartoon like. And though it was more crazy, it was less terrifying. first comment? :)Avatar Imagekatielilly says: she* finally*Avatar Imagespelljinxcursehexcharm says: I totally agree. She got the Bellatrix character perfectly. I don't know what I think of her; she's my favorite character but I like when she died. She should've gone insane in Azkaban to the point where she was like Frank and Alice Longbottom, but since she's not, she's just completely sadistic, she could be one of the strongest, smartest characters in HP. Avatar ImageLaura Potter says: I've always thought she played Bellatrix so well, and ive never really found fault in her performances. The way she is so unpredicatble, it makes such an interesting character, yet leaves you paranoid about what she's going to do next! cant wait to see her death scene in part 2, hope they do it justice :) :)Avatar Imagegreenfinch says: yes! she's so amazing, in everything she's in.Avatar Imageksddancer says: She did the character amazingly. She was just as I pictured her. Bellatrix being my favorite villain for reasons I don't even know I am extremely happy. She was just like a thing from a horror film but withmore depth and frankly passion. Se is an amazing character who is complex because you truly have to understand she has no conscience but incredible skill and knowledge not to mention everything else. Helena couldn't make a better Bellatrix from her portrayal.Avatar ImageMaryMalfoy says: She's amazing. I love her :) She's pretty much the only reason I like Bella. Avatar Imagesessionka says: Helena Bonham Carter did a wonderful job portraying a character I hated MORE than Voldemort!!!Avatar ImageExpectoPatronum512 says: She was the perfect Bellatrix-- I was blown away by her performance in DH! When I read the books, she is who I picture as Bellatrix-- even before I watched the movies, she has always been Bellatrix! Well done, Helena Bonham Carter, well done!Avatar Imagedevilskinn says: Magnificent!Avatar Imagedevilskinn says: Magnificent!Avatar Imagekatielilly says: I agree sessionka! I hate Bellatrix more than Voldemort. Voldemort has reasons for becoming the way he did. You'd like to think that if he grew up in a loving family he would turn out alright. Although he probably would have been evil anyway. Bellatrix is evil for no reason. Avatar Imagebellatrix15101 says: Helena Bonham Carter is, I think, officially one of my favorite actresses......Avatar Imagenwrosey says: <3Avatar Imagebudgie says: She does a Great Bellatrix. I look forward to her fight with "Mrs. Weasley".Avatar ImageSindi says: Helena Bonham Carter is an amazing actress over all, i love the way she portrays Bellatrix, she fits the script perfectly! Avatar ImageAleks says: Lol, can u guys imagine if Yates removed the part where Molly duels Bella? It's not totally unthinkable that he would do just that... but let's hope not!Avatar ImageiLoveDolores says: @Aleks, the 'not my daughter u...' line is definitely in the movie, yates confirmed it, so i think its safe to say they will duel. but Helena is amazing in these movies, im completely in love with her :) shes just crazy!! loved reading her thoughts on the character, and how much the movies have meant to her :)Avatar Imageblessi says: She still the best. But you know in the movie she looks so scary not the looks but the way she act. But when I watch the premiere she was so decent and a bit low voice, and when she had an interview, she will speak but just a bit. Anyway she's so good! great actress I like the way she act. :)Avatar Imageazaadpotter says: Shes fantastic as bellatrixAvatar Imagedevilskinn says: Magnificent!Avatar Imagedevilskinn says: Magnificent!Avatar Imagemoglet says: I think she's great and I love her individuality, in real life she doesn't conform to what people think a movie star whould look like, and I think that she's perfect casting for Bellatrix. I really liked her comment about Bella "She’s almost like someone who’s had too many surgeries and thinks they’re beautiful but in fact has gone the way wrong. There’s a lot of people like that now." I don't think Helena will ever make that mistake, more power to her, she's great.Avatar ImageFawkes1706 says: Bellatrix is an awesome character, although one of the baddies. Helena did a fantastic job and has made her such a memorable character in the movies.Avatar ImageGiant Squid says: She is such a great actor and plays Bellatrix so well!Avatar Imageharrypotterfreak101 says: Yes! Bellatrix is going to even more disturbing! I've always admired her demeanor. She's crazy but passionate about her work. Her weirdness and fanatic self is what I've always been fascinated by. Now she's going to push the limit! Which will be totally awesome!Avatar Imageashim_gryffindor says: yeah, she's perfect for the part. I'm quite sure the dueling bit is in DH2Avatar Imagejhangelgurl says: I'm glad they picked Helena Bonham Carter she plays Bellatrix perfectly! Also glad she put a little more into the character to bring her to life. Avatar Imagedumbledoresman348578 says: she was simply born to play bellatrix! and i thought the part where she volunteered herself to kill harry at the meeting in malfoy manor at the beginning of the film then when voldemort said no she got all disappointed was absolutely hilarious....in a evil sort of wayAvatar ImageFresca says: Helena Bonham Carter was a great Bellatrix. Her portrayal of Bellatrix was a combination of evil, dire menace and vulnerability as well. I really want to see her in The King's Speech. The Queen Mum was quite a lady, but a force to be reckoned with as well, and Helena will play that role to perfection.Avatar ImageFresca says: Helena Bonham Carter was a great Bellatrix. Her portrayal of Bellatrix was a combination of evil, dire menace and vulnerability as well. I really want to see her in The King's Speech. The Queen Mum was quite a lady, but a force to be reckoned with as well, and Helena will play that role to perfection.Avatar Imageglow_freak says: LOVE IT! Best person to play Bellatrix hands down.Avatar ImageAlice Weasley says: I LOVE HBC- and she was great in DH1!!! Can't wait to see more of her :)Avatar Imageultraviolet says: Helena... we love you, you absolute Goddess!Avatar ImageTheGleek77 says: sh'es soo good as Bellatrix! I agree with DarthKatie_Lily on how she seemed to be better this movie that's true she seemed much creepierAvatar ImageAurorHJH says: she is amazing as Bellatrix...just how I imaginedAvatar Image9em says: She did a good job on Bellatrix, not very many people would be able to do it as good as her. We Love her very very much!!!!!Avatar ImageMistic Willow says: Helena Bonham Carter Plays the role of Bellatrix Excellently!!!! I don't believe there is anyone else who could have captured the role better!!!! She is an AWESOME Actress!!! I also loved her in Alice in Wonderland, The Sweeney Todd, She just plays her part/role Outstandingly!!! and really has a tallent for bringing the Character to Life!!!! Avatar Imagephoenixes are in ravenclaw says: Helena is an amazing actress, and I am safe to say that she is one of, if not, the best adult actress in the films. Iove her in every movie that I've seen her in. I got really annoyed when the media went ballistic when she said she took parenting classes. It went from "I take parenting classes.." to "Carter Admits She's a Bad Parent!" Sorry for the random rant, but, media, find something else that's actually important to write on!Avatar ImageJK.jr. says: I love Bellztrix and i think Helen did a great job portraying her!Avatar Imagechuzzle says: she fits the role perfectly! Helena Bonham Cartar, you are the BEST!!! :DAvatar ImageMaiWood says: I can't imagine anyone else but Helena playing Bellatrix! I love her representation but still hate her for being Bellatrix at the same time and that's what I love most :)Avatar ImageSmitch says: Helena Bonham Carter - one of the most underrated actresses, I think! I loved her in "Margaret's Museum", and have been adoring her ever since. She did such and amazing job playing the character of Bellatrix. She notes the differences between Bellatrix in the canon, and the character on screen, and I think that shows her understanding of the need to portray that madness in an open, impressionable sort of way in the films so that the audience 'gets' her mindset, and her perspective...it's brilliant, and I don't think anyone else could have played a better Bella. Avatar Imageeliselestrange says: I LOVE THAT WOMAN. I adore her. In some years I'm moving to London just to walk by hers and Tims apartment every day (and maybe do a little bit of studying)..

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