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Top 10 Harry Potter Actors Who Were Replaced in the Sequels

VO: Emily Brayton WRITTEN BY: spencer sher
Musical chairs anyone? Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Harry Potter Actors Who Were Replaced in the Sequels. For this list, we’ll be looking at instances where a character that was played by one actor was played by another in a later film. However, we will not be including instances where a character was replaced, which happened to Vincent Crabbe in “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1”. Additionally, characters such as Tom Riddle, who were portrayed by multiple actors, but during different points in his life, will not be considered, as it is technically not a recasting.
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Top 10 Harry Potter Actors Who Were Replaced in the Sequels

Musical chairs anyone? Welcome to MsMojo, and today we’ll be counting down our picks for the Top 10 Harry Potter Actors Who Were Replaced in the Sequels.

For this list, we’ll be looking at actors whose character was played by someone else in subsequent films. We’ll be excluding instances where one character took on the role of another, as happened with Vincent Crabbe, and where actors were playing the same character at different ages.

#10: Genevieve Gaunt as Pansy Parkinson
Replaced by: Scarlett Byrne

Remember Pansy Parkinson? She’s THIS one . . . Oh, and also this one. Aaand also these. No less than four different actresses portrayed Pansy in the movies. However, only two of these actually had credited, speaking roles. When she first appeared in “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban”, Pansy was played by Genevieve Gaunt. However, when the role was expanded in “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” and “The Deathly Hallows Part 1 and 2” Gaunt was replaced by Scarlett Byrne, who did a great job of bringing the characters mean streak to the big screen.

#9: Nina Young as Helena Ravenclaw
Replaced by: Kelly Macdonald

In “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2” Ravenclaw’s house ghost, the Grey Lady, is revealed to actually be Helena Ravenclaw, daughter of Hogwarts founder Rowena Ravenclaw. The character was originally played by Australian actress Nina Young, but replaced by the more established Kelly Macdonald when the final film rolled around. Rumour has it that Kate Winslet was also offered the role. We were perfectly happy with Macdonald, however, whose performance was one of the most memorable supporting roles in the movie.

#8: Danielle Tabor as Angelina Johnson
Replaced by: Tiana Benjamin

This character’s role in the first three Harry Potter films was relatively small - although she did manage to score during a Gryffindor-Slytherin quidditch match in “Philosopher’s Stone”. When the part was expanded for “Goblet of Fire” Tiana Benjamin replaced the original actress, Danielle Tabor. Benjamin was originally meant to appear in subsequent films but was unable to commit due to her involvement with the British soap opera “EastEnders”. Oddly enough she wasn’t the only Gryffindor chaser to be replaced in a later film, as Katie Bell actress Emily Dale was swapped out for Georgina Leonidas from “Half Blood Prince” on.

#7: Derek Deadman as Tom
Replaced by: Jim Tavaré

In “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” British actor Derek Deadman portrays Tom, the Barman of the Leaky Cauldron, seen during Harry’s first trip to Diagon Alley. However, the character was taken in an entirely new direction for “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban”. The film swapped out Deadman for comedian Jim Tavaré and featured Tom as a bald hunchback innkeeper who aggressively escorts Harry to meet Cornelius Fudge after he accidentally blows up his aunt. Tavaré’s performance makes the scene stand out and meshes perfectly with “Prisoner of Azkaban’s” off brand of humor.

#6: Richard Fish as Bill Weasley
Replaced by: Domhnall Gleeson To say that Domhnall Gleeson “replaced” Richard Fish is a bit of a stretch - but hey, we have photographic evidence. Fish’s portrayal of the character in “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” consists of a single scene in which he’s seen in a single photograph. The photo, which Ron shows to Harry in the Leaky Cauldron, is from the Weasley’s trip to Egypt. Bill wouldn’t pop up again until “Deathly Hallows – Part 1” and by that point he’d been replaced by Domhnall Gleeson. Gleeson would reprise the role in “Deathly Hallows – Part 2”, helping to defend Hogwarts from Voldemort and his army.

#5: Elizabeth Spriggs as The Fat Lady
Replaced by: Dawn French

The Fat Lady appeared in just two of the eight Harry Potter films and the two incarnations couldn’t have been more different. In “Philosopher’s Stone” the character is played by Elizabeth Spriggs. A classically trained actress, Spriggs’ performance oozed regality and gave The Fat Lady an air of sophistication. This made the characters appearance in “Prisoner of Azkaban” all the more surprising. The film saw comedian Dawn French taking on the mantle of the Fat Lady, and giving a truly hilarious performance. Unfortunately this would be the last time we got to see her character in the films.

#4: Jennifer Smith as Lavender Brown
Replaced by: Jessie Cave

The Harry Potter series has seen its fair share of annoying characters and Lavender Brown is up there with the worst of them. She’s needy, whiny and hopelessly jealous of Ron’s relationship with Hermione. Of course this only became apparent in the sixth film, as prior to that Brown was nothing more than a non-speaking background character. She was played by Kathleen Cauley in “Chamber of Secrets” and Jennifer Smith in “Prisoner of Azkaban” . . . but then by Jessie Cave from “The Half-Blood Prince” onward. It was a noticeable recasting, and drew objections from some, while others claimed it had originally been designated to background actors at random, before auditions for a speaking part.

#3: Verne Troyer as Griphook
Replaced by: Warwick Davis

A goblin and employee of Gringotts Wizarding Bank, Griphook bookended the Harry Potter series, appearing in “The Philosopher’s Stone” and “Deathly Hallows – Part 1 and 2” respectively. Verne Troyer played him in the first movie, but Warwick David actually voiced the character - and took over from Troyer in the last installments. He also played Professor Flitwick, and appeared as both characters in “Deathly Hallows - Part 2”. Davis also holds the unique distinction of being the only actor in the series to play two versions of the same character, as Professor Flitwick’s appearance was completely reinvented between the second and third films.

#2: Richard Bremmer as Lord Voldemort
Replaced by: Ralph Fiennes

Evil has many faces. Which is especially true when it comes to Voldemort. Over the course of the films, a whole host of actors brought the Dark Lord to life. Before Ralph Fiennes stepped into those shoes, “He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named” was played by Richard Bremmer and voiced by Ian Hart - a.k.a. Professor Quirrell. It’s Hart’s stunt double Theo Kypri under the robes when Harry stumbles on Voldemort drinking unicorn blood. And we’re not even counting the three actors who played young Tom Riddle. Only in the fourth film do we see the revived Voldemort that we know and fear. Enter Ralph Fiennes, and one of the scariest performances of all time!

Before we unveil our number one pick, here are a few honorable mentions:

Will Theakston as Marcus Flint
Replaced by: Jamie Yeates

Jessica Hynes as Mafalda Hopkirk
Replaced by: Sophie Thompson

Sitara Shah as Parvati Patil & Sharon Sandhu as Padma Patil
Replaced by: Shefali Chowdhury & Afshan Azad

#1: Richard Harris as Albus Dumbledore
Replaced by: Michael Gambon


Two legendary actors, one iconic character. In the first two Harry Potter films Richard Harris brought the series’ most beloved character to life in a way that few could have ever imagined. Harris almost passed on the role, but was convinced by his granddaughter - a massive Potter fan - to take it. Sadly we never got to see how Harris would have approached the character as things got darker in the wizarding world, as he passed away in 2002 at the age of 72. Michael Gambon took up the mantle from there, and did a solid job of continuing his legacy, while also giving his own spin on things
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