J.K. Rowling, author of the bestselling children fantasy series Harry Potter could care less that her beloved character Hermione Granger, made famous in the films by Emma Watson, will now be played by African-American award winning actress Noma Dumezweni.
During a recent interview with The Guardian, Rowling expressed her surprise to the negative reaction she received and shuts down the Twitter “racists.”
“With my experience of social media, I thought that idiots were going to idiot,” she said. “But what can you say? That’s the way the world is. Noma was chosen because she was the best actress for the job.”
The play’s director John Tiffany also shared his opinion on the controversy. “I am not as Twitter familiar as Jo and Jack, so I hadn’t encountered its dark side, which is just awful. But what shocked me was the way people couldn’t visualize a non-white person as the hero of a story. It’s therefore brilliant that this has happened.”
Within the seven book series, neither Hermione’s race nor skin color was ever mentioned. “I decided not to get too agitated about it and simply state quite firmly that Hermione can be a black woman with my absolute blessing and enthusiasm,” said Rowling.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is a two-part production set to premier at London’s Palace Theatre (July 30.)