A great dame (Maggie Smith, that is)

  July 7, 2003 at 11:12 AM ET
  Cheeser     The Leaky Cauldron (via Evening Standard)

From the Evening Standardopens in new window (This is London):

It has taken more than 50 years of appearing on stage and in films for Maggie Smith to achieve the superstar status where children stop her in the street. "They mostly ask me to turn into a cat, which is very, very tricky because I can't do it," she says. "I wish I could."

Dame Maggie, 68, treats her Harry Potter bonanza with down-to-earth amusement, though the stern, shapeshifting Professor Minerva McGonagall is not her most challenging role.

"I look on the part as a sort of pension," she says. "In the one we're filming now (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban) I'm not very involved. I'm always telling the children to go back to their dormitories. I trail around after Dumbledore and then tell them, 'Go back to your rooms immediately.'" She smiles slightly. "It's not a taxing role to learn, I have to say."

She's still the perfect McGonagall in my mind. Read more of this rare interview at the link.


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