…on the eve of the opening preview of Peter Shaffer’s Equus revival starring (GASP! FART! HOLYFUCKINGSHIT, NO!) Daniel Radcliffe – Harry Potter himself! – that Daniel and everyone around him should be commended for putting up this remarkable play, and more importantly: Fuck Harry Potter.
Equus is a phenomenal work – one of the few plays that has continued to move me – as it has many others – upon every reading since the age of 15. It is an absolutely unforgettable piece of writing that has never received due praise, in large part because many remember only the 1977 film adaptation which was ultimately lackluster in most all respects. The hubbub surrounding Daniel doing nude scenes and its effect on his Potter character/the film franchise is alarming; that the young actor has chosen to tackle this tough material at the Gielgud in front of a live audience six days a week displays taste, intelligence, and, hopefully, a love for his craft. That everyone else is concerned with the fact that Harry Potter gets naked displays how utterly ridiculous we’ve become as an audience.
From thisislondon.com: “Gone are the round, NHS glasses and his hitherto ever- so-geeky appearance, to be replaced by a toned (and surprisingly hirsute) torso, tousled hair and the merest hint of manly stubble.
Also plainly missing are the undergarments of the shapely Joanna Christie, the former Holby City actress who gets to share Radcliffe’s steamy scenes and who is seen resting her naked body against his while caressing his bare flesh against the provocative backdrop of a haystack.
All of which would, doubtless, have Harry’s female sidekick Hermione Granger feeling decidedly giddy. A sensation shared by executives from Warner Bros, who make the hugely successful film versions of J.K. Rowling’s books about the schoolboy wizard.
They are said to be ‘utterly dismayed’ by the steamy shots, as well as the discovery that the sixth-former will not only cavort naked for a full ten minutes during the production, but will also be seen, sources say, simulating sex while riding a ‘horse’ played by male ballet dancer Will Kemp.
They fear the scenes could damage their multi-million-dollar film franchise and could even lead, U.S. executives at the company told the Mail this week, to the actor being replaced as the clean- cut hero of Hogwarts School. One U.S. source revealed: ‘Warner Bros have been building up their publicity machine for Harry’s first – chaste – screen kiss when the next Potter film comes out in the summer.
‘Now our star is out there doing full-frontal sex. We’ve been blown completely out of the water by this.'”
I too am just so angry that Equus has thrown a wrench into Warners’ publicity machine for Harry’s chaste first kiss. What will they possibly do? How will we, as an audience, ever feel as connected to that sublime moment? It would truly have been transcendent, and now this… fucking, please.
From cinematical.com: “It’s old news by now that Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe will be appearing nude on stage in London during a production of Equus. However, we’ve recently come across this poster for the upcoming play, and it’s hard not to find it just a little bit disturbing. They’ve even made Radcliffe’s nipples into the horse’s eyes, and it’ll be hard to look at Harry Potter the same way again. The play is about a boy who really loves his horse, and Radcliffe decided to take the role to prove that he could play other parts besides the boy wizard.”
You know what, they’re right. Man will it be hard to look at Harry Potter the same way again. Man will it be hard to look at Harry Potter the same way again. Harry Potter. The same way. Again. Harry Potter.
And through all of this: Anyone want to mention that our little Harry kills his horse with a fucking spike? Anyone? Through the eye!
Nope. Just that he’s naked. That Harry Potter is naked and sexing. And we might not like the umpteenth installment of the quadrillion dollar franchise as much because of it. Outrage.
Again, fuck Harry Potter. And many thanks to the extremely talented up-and-comer Thea Sharrock (if we’re lucky she’ll be in film soon enough…) for taking this tough material back to the stage. And a well-deserved MUCH RESPECT to Daniel R. for making the decision to take the heat and step out of the Hollywood machine for a bit to be a part of something really special on the stage. I hope to make it over there to see this one…which is far more than I can say for Harry Potter 17: Curse of the Evil Hogwart Witch Sorcerer’s Secret Cauldron of Newt Tales and Puppy Balls…of Azkaban.
And just for the record: I think the Equus poster is great.