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Harry Potter is an atheist – hooray!

Okay, okay – it’s just Daniel Radcliffe who plays Harry Potter – not the fictional boy wizard himself. But still pretty cool. Daniel has always mentioned that he’s not particularly religious, but in his latest interview with Esquire he officially “comes out” as an atheist.

“In an interview with Esquire magazine, Radcliffe risked the US box office prospects of the new Harry Potter film by declaring himself to be an atheist.

In a pronouncement that will dismay America’s religious Right, which has long voiced suspicions about Potter’s “anti-Christian” message, the 19-year-old actor said he did not believe in God.

He also expressed his admiration for Professor Richard Dawkins, the prominent atheist and bete noir of Evangelical Christians.

Radcliffe has been reticent on the subject of religion in the past, but in an interview to promote the latest instalment in the film franchise, Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, released on July 15, he said: “I’m an atheist, but I’m very relaxed about it. I don’t preach my atheism, but I have a huge amount of respect for people like Richard Dawkins who do. Anything he does on television, I will watch.”

He joked: “There we go, Dan, that’s half of America that’s not going to see the next Harry Potter film on the back of that comment.”

JK Rowling’s stories of the schoolboy wizard are taken very seriously by some Evangelical Christians in the United States. One of the largest Christian groups in the country, Focus on the Family, denounced the books as “witchcraft”.”

I wasn’t one of those fangirls who immediately thought Daniel Radcliffe was some sort of hottie. I was way too preoccupied oggling Alan Rickman (and I still am). But I have to admit, Dan has really grown on me. He’s getting cute now that he’s not jail bait anymore, and every time I hear him in an interview he’s witty, intelligent, and nice. But now he’s an out atheist and a fan of Richard Dawkins? Definitely going up on my list of cute famous atheist guys I have no chance with!

Comments

  1. says

    I did a small victory dance. I admit it. I’m not a fangirl either (of Daniel, at least) but I am a borderline HP fangirl. Borderline mostly because from what I’ve seen and heard I barely scratch the surface of fangirldom. That being said, I still am quite scary. I squee on the inside. Anyhoo. This piece of news really delighted me. Atheist +1 – YAY!!!

  2. says

    I did a small victory dance. I admit it. I'm not a fangirl either (of Daniel, at least) but I am a borderline HP fangirl. Borderline mostly because from what I've seen and heard I barely scratch the surface of fangirldom. That being said, I still am quite scary. I squee on the inside. Anyhoo. This piece of news really delighted me. Atheist +1 – YAY!!!

  3. says

    Alan Rickman does have his own dark, brooding form of attractiveness, I’ll give you that. The only thing that turns me off of him though is his voice: can you imagine him saying your name in that monotone while you’re on your knees and he’s pulling your hair and calling you a bad girl?

  4. says

    Alan Rickman does have his own dark, brooding form of attractiveness, I'll give you that. The only thing that turns me off of him though is his voice: can you imagine him saying your name in that monotone while you're on your knees and he's pulling your hair and calling you a bad girl?

  5. says

    What?!?! Alan Rickman’s voice is the best part! He could read the phonebook to me and I’d probably die of glee.

  6. says

    What?!?! Alan Rickman's voice is the best part! He could read the phonebook to me and I'd probably die of glee.

  7. says

    It’s always amused me that Focus on the Family thinks the Harry Potter novels are nearly some kind of instruction manuals in witchcraft.

  8. says

    It's always amused me that Focus on the Family thinks the Harry Potter novels are nearly some kind of instruction manuals in witchcraft.

  9. says

    Hm. Have to admire his moxy for that statement. Then again, I have a great respect for anyone who can express themselves inoffensively and openly. Society as a majority is pretty desensitized (or totally unaware/uncaring) about someone’s religious status (or lack there of) when it comes to hollywood, and that is a good thing. The one on one consequences of it…….well, I am sure there will be something ugly made of it, but I can’t immediately think of what because my mind doesn’t work like that. I’ve always been a “this is your belief and here is mine” kind of person. I think it is great, in short that he can just say “I’m an atheist” and be no less a person. Atheists say “victory for us” and religious people say “oh no not HARRY!” My odd blend of person just says “right on.” Not good. Not bad.

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