Remember sitting in front of the television screen with your friends and watching a little guy do magic? Remember seeing a giant wizard in these films and that becoming your favourite character? The credit to making Hagrid one of the most iconic characters goes to Robbie Coltrane.

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While everyone knows Rubeus Hagrid from Harry Potter, not many know the actor who gave life to this character. Coltrane is a Scottish actor, comedian and writer who essayed the role of the wizard between 2001 and 2011. Apart from this iconic role, he is also known for playing Valentin Dmitrovich Zukovsky in the James Bond films GoldenEye (1995) and The World Is Not Enough (1999). He started his career appearing alongside Hugh Laurie, Stephen Fry, and Emma Thompson in the sketch series Alfresco.

The actor was also appointed as the Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2006 New Year Honours by Queen Elizabeth II for his services to drama. He was honoured for his outstanding contribution to film at the British Academy Scotland Awards.

Recently, he was in the news when rumours suggested that he had passed away. There was no confirmation of this. However, everyone was relieved to see him in the recent Harry Potter special. To mark the 20th anniversary of the film franchise, the cast of the film including Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson sat down together for a special episode titled Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts. Coltrane talked about his time playing Hagrid and was teary-eyed remembering the days.

He said emotionally: “It’s the end of an era. Ten years of my life. My children have grown up during it. The legacy of the movies is that my children’s generation will show them to their children … So you could be watching it in 50 years’ time, easily … I’ll not be here, sadly … but Hagrid will, yes.”

Coltrane’s work also includes Flash Gordon and Death Watch, along with Gateway to the South, Scrubbers, The Supergrass and Absolute Beginners.

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