Although it all began with J.K. Rowling’s beloved novels, the Harry Potter franchise has been entertaining audiences for decades. While the Wizarding World remains an important part of pop culture, the author has received a lot of criticism for her controversial views on gender, sex, and the trans community. While several Harry Potter cast members have spoken out in support of transgender people, Helena Bonham Carter recently defended Rowling amid her controversies.
Helena Bonham Carter was pitch-perfect as the villainous Bellatrix Lestrange in the final four Harry Potter films. She defended both Johnny Depp and J.K. Rowling in a recent interview with The Times(opens in new tab) about her career and personal life. Carter was quoted as saying about the creative mind behind the Wizarding World:
I believe she has been pursued. People’s judgmentalism has been taken to its logical conclusion. She has the right to express herself, especially if she has been abused. Everyone carries their own trauma history and forms their opinions based on that trauma, and you must respect where people come from and their pain. You don’t have to agree on everything; doing so would be insane and boring. She’s not being aggressive; she’s simply speaking from personal experience. Personally, I believe [my co-stars] should respect her opinions, but I believe they are concerned with protecting their own fan base and generation.
So there you have it. While both fans and celebrities have condemned J.K. Rowling’s remarks about the transgender community, Helena Bonham Carter has a different perspective. Specifically, she places a high value on the fact that the 57-year-old writer came out as a survivor of domestic violence, which appears to have informed her views on same-sex spaces.
Helena Bonham Carter’s comments to The Times are sure to raise eyebrows, especially in light of statements made by Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and Fantastic Beasts star Eddie Redmayne. Those actors have all used their public platforms to support the transgender community, a vulnerable demographic that is subjected to violence in alarming numbers. Still, Carter appears to be offended by how much backlash J.K. Rowling has received as a result of this debate.
One of Helena Bonham Carter’s Harry Potter co-stars recently defended J.K. Rowling. Voldemort himself, Ralph Fiennes, took issue with the amount of vitriol directed at her. He, like Carter, did not argue with people who were offended or upset by Rowling’s comments, but he believes the online response has been toxic. Clearly, the conversation about Rowling isn’t going away anytime soon.
Because of how many outsiders have identified with the Harry Potter franchise over the years, J.K. Rowling’s views on gender have gotten such a strong reaction online. This is especially true for LGBTQ+ supporters who have felt betrayed by Rowling’s remarks about the transgender community. Some people have gone so far as to abandon the Wizarding World entirely, including books, movies, plays, and theme parks.
The final two installments of the Fantastic Beasts franchise have yet to be announced, so it’s unclear when Harry Potter will return to theaters. Meanwhile, use the 2023 movie release dates to plan your trips to the movies in the coming year.