Weekend #2 – Helen McCrory

I would happily talk about Helen McCrory all day long, she is probably my all-time favourite actress – I think I would travel almost anywhere to see her onstage – and certainly one of the strongest we have working across theatre, film and television. Yet despite all this, she remains slightly under the radar, not many people know who she is by name alone but as her projects become increasingly high-profile, such anonymity cannot last long.

Most people will probably know her as Narcissa Malfoy from the Harry Potter films. She was originally cast as Bellatrix but had to withdraw due to pregnancy allowing Helena Bonham-Carter to take over, which I daresay was perhaps a better choice, though it would have been fascinating to see what she would have done with Bellatrix. Obviously still wanted by the Harry Potter franchise, she took the much smaller role of Draco’s mother in the later films and if you pay attention, it is actually her who saves the world at the end with her actions! She is also now filming the new Bond film Skyfall which fills me with endless excitement though if she is anything less than the new Goldfinger, I will be devastated.

Her work, whether on stage or screen, has the kind of lasting memorable quality that crept up on me rather slowly as I came to realise she is probably one of the finest actors we are blessed to have working. I’ve seen her onstage three times now: in As You Like It, Rosmersholm and The Late Middle Classes, but I’ve been a fan for a long time and so I’m blogging the things that made me fall in love with her: TV shows North Square, Charles II: The Power and the Passion and The Jury, as well as revisiting other things she has been in Frankenstein and Charlotte Gray, and watching a couple of films with her in for the first time, Becoming Jane and Casanova. I may well catch up with her work in other things for a later weekend, but I think this will do for now. So, welcome into the world of one of my obsessions!

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