The young stars of the Harry Potter cast all became intimately familiar with their characters. After all, most of these actors were taking on their first blockbuster roles. So we can forgive Fred Weasley actor James Phelps for feeling a bit strange when he first found out that he was going to die in the final movie.
By the time Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows arrived on bookshelves in 2007, the first five movie adaptations had arrived and the Harry Potter cast was hard at work on Half-Blood Prince. But James Phelps was traveling in Japan when he picked up his copy of the book and learned his fate in the new movies to come. As you’d expect from a Weasley twin, his response was very relatable.
“I was actually on a bullet train, and I read the part when Fred died,” said Phelps to Metro. “So I’m a bit shell-shocked at this point, because I didn’t realize how attached I got to the character. That caught me by surprise. I was surprised that he died.
“I’m kind of all going over these different emotions. At the same time, the ticket officer is coming around asking for tickets. And he just kind of prodded me saying ‘ticket, ticket’. All I could do is look at him and I actually said: ‘Mate, come on, I’ve just died here. Let me have a bit of time to myself.'”
We’re frankly surprised that Phelps was able to keep it together. We certainly weren’t capable of one-liners when we first read that scene. Even now, we struggle to recall Fred’s final moments without tearing up.
The Weasley twins are among the most beloved Harry Potter characters and Fred’s death at the hands of the Death Eaters is a truly shocking moment in the bloodshed of the Battle of Hogwarts. It left us feeling bluer than the cast of Avatar 3.
With the greatest of respect to Hedwig, Lupin, and the rest of the victims of the blood-thirsty final book, it’s the death of Fred Weasley that really hits hard. With Ron Weasley established as one of the protagonists of the series, the loss of one of his family members carries extra weight.
Given the importance of the twins, it’s not surprising that Ron chose to follow in the footsteps of his fallen sibling. While Harry and Hermione became lifelong Ministry of Magic employees, Ron didn’t last long as an Auror. He left the magical police force to join George in running the Weasley’s Wizard Wheezes joke shop on Diagon Alley.
As for us, we’re still torn up over Fred’s death. We just hope Phelps didn’t let it ruin his trip to Japan too much.
For more from the Wizarding World, check out our round-up of the scariest Harry Potter villains, read our guide to watching the Harry Potter movies in order, and find out about the violent Harry Potter scene that nearly went too far.
As for the best movies on the way in this franchise, we can’t wait for the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child movie release date. Of course, that excitement will be doubled if the Cursed Child movie has the courage to be a gay romance.
The creator of the Harry Potter series, JK Rowling, has made a number of transphobic remarks on social media in recent years. If you’d like to learn more about transgender equality or lend your support, here are two charities we encourage you to visit: the National Center for Transgender Equality in the US, and Mermaids in the UK.