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Ralph Fiennes Defends J.K. Rowling Against ‘Appalling’ Backlash and ‘Verbal Abuse’

"The verbal abuse directed at her is disgusting, it’s appalling."

JK Rowling and Ralph Fiennes

JK Rowling and Ralph Fiennes

Getty

Lord Voldemort is coming to J.K. Rowling’s rescue.

Ralph Fiennes, who played the iconic baddie in the “Harry Potter” film franchise, spoke out on the “verbal abuse” weathered by author Rowling amid her repeated anti-transgender comments.

“J.K. Rowling has written these great books about empowerment, about young children finding themselves as human beings,” Fiennes told The New York Times. “It’s about how you become a better, stronger, more morally centered human being. The verbal abuse directed at her is disgusting, it’s appalling.”

Fiennes continued, “I mean, I can understand a viewpoint that might be angry at what she says about women. But it’s not some obscene, über-right-wing fascist. It’s just a woman saying, ‘I’m a woman and I feel I’m a woman and I want to be able to say that I’m a woman.’ And I understand where she’s coming from. Even though I’m not a woman.”

The “Menu” star addressed cancel culture as a whole, saying, “Righteous anger is righteous, but often it becomes kind of dumb because it can’t work its way through the gray areas. It has no nuance.”

Despite being at first “a bit sniffy” over accepting the role as Lord Voldemort, Fiennes has since stood by the franchise, much like Warner Bros. itself, after the company condemned violent threats directed at Rowling via social media.

“Warner Bros. has enjoyed a creative, productive, and fulfilling partnership with J.K. Rowling for the past 20 years. She is one of the world’s most accomplished storytellers, and we are proud to be the studio to bring her vision, characters, and stories to life now – and for decades to come,” Warner Bros. said earlier this year.

Rowling penned the seven bestselling “Harry Potter” books before introducing the “Fantastic Beasts” prequel series. The author has come under fire for a slew of transphobic comments over the years, most recently in March 2022 regarding proposed amendments to the Gender Recognition Reform Bill in Scotland. Rowling co-wrote “Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore” and has final approval over scripts. Despite not attending HBO’s 20th anniversary special for “Harry Potter,” Rowling walked the red carpet for the “Fantastic Beasts” latest premiere.

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