Helen Mirren’s uncharacteristic absence from the Harry Potter series has proven almost a full-blown job opening for some of Britain’s finest actors. But she has found her own way into its magical world.
Dame Helen, as an Oscar, Emmy and Tony Award-winning actress, made her debut as the host of the quiz show with “Harry Potter: Hogwarts Tournament of Houses”. The weekly four-part series begins at 8 p.m. EST Sunday on TBS and Cartoon Network.
In episode one, contestants representing Gryffindor and Hufflepuff asked trivia questions about movie adaptations of JK Rowling’s novels to win trophies and prizes.
Mirren lets the players cram in and doesn’t worry about being a novice game presenter.
“I could definitely play a strict host,” she said, excitedly.
Mirren’s willingness to do something different should not raise an eyebrow. She is celebrated for her regal roles — including “The Queen,” “Elizabeth I” and “Catherine the Great” — but also counts the Fast & the Furious franchise among her diverse credits.
Her comeback with an upcoming comic-based project: She plays a mythical goddess in “Shazam! Fury of the Gods. “Mirren’s baptism in this genre accompanies the movie ‘Red’ and its sequel.
In an interview with the Associated Press, she discussed her admiration for the Potter rule, television fashion statements, and female relationships on the set of the DC Comics-based film. Comments have been edited for length and clarity.
AP: You’ve had an eclectic acting career and now you’re adding your first game show to your resume.
MIRREN: Absolutely, that’s why I signed up for it. I’ve always liked a little adventure. Other than that, of course, it’s a great theme and at a great time, the 20th anniversary (of “The Sorcerer’s Stone,” the first Potter movie). And the fact that I’ve never been in any of the Harry Potter movies – I might add that I feel very sad. It’s a great way to be able to participate in the whole extraordinary phenomenon that is Harry Potter.
AP: Are you a fan of stories?
MIRROR: What I remember very well is when the whole world of Harry Potter began to rise. The most amazing thing is the way the books are passed between the children, and the adults know almost nothing about it. It’s not like it was published with great fanfare. A lot of people will be competing (on the show), they’ll be in their 20s, 30s, 40s, but they’ll have past experience with Harry Potter as children.
AP: Have you watched any competition shows on TV for tips or looking for advice on how to host?
MIRREN: I think I’ll play it by ear and be as natural as possible. Personally, I’m excited about it, so hopefully I’ll announce it. I will probably be as nervous as the contestants themselves, and I will try to hide it.
AP: You don’t play a role with your character’s designated costume, but is there a certain look you’d like as a host?
MIRREN: That’s an interesting question. The movie, as you’ll see, it’s phenomenal, it’s the wonderfully beautiful Harry Potter world they’ve built. So I want what I wear to reflect a little bit of the feel of the outfit. And in a way, I’m playing some kind of character. So yeah, I wanted that to be a feel for the dress and the presentation. It has a bit of a vintage feel to it, and a sense of belonging in that world.
AP: In the sequel to “Shazam!” You play as Hespera, the daughter of Atlas. Is she a hero or a villain?
MIRREN: I won’t tell you the answer to that. You will have to determine for sure for yourself. I am a member of the three goddesses: Lucy Liu as Kalypso and the third goddess played by Rachel Zegler, who is going to be a huge star in a very short amount of time. So there were three of us together, and it was a really great experience because rarely do you spend an entire movie with two other women. So often you’re the only woman in the cast. We’re a trio here, and that’s great. I love it.
https://www.nbcphiladelphia.com/entertainment/entertainment-news/helen-mirren-makes-regal-bow-as-harry-potter-quiz-show-host/3058535/ Helen Mirren as Regal Bow as Harry Potter Quiz Host – NBC10 Philadelphia