Daniel Radcliffe says “panic” of ‘Harry Potter’ ending fuelled his drinking problem

The actor has been sober since 2010

Daniel Radcliffe has said that doubts about life after the Harry Potter franchise contributed to his former drinking problem.

The actor, who struggled with alcohol abuse for several years, explained the pressures he felt at the time while appearing on BBC Radio 4’s latest Desert Island Discs.

He told host Lauren Laverne: “I think, badly at first, if I went out and if I got drunk, I’d suddenly be aware of there being interest in that because it’s not just a drunk guy. It’s ‘Oh, Harry Potter’s getting drunk in the bar.’”


Radcliffe said that playing the titular role “carried some kind of interest for people and also a slightly mocking interest”, adding: “It’s inherently funny for people.”

Daniel Radcliffe in Harry Potter
Daniel Radcliffe starred in the ‘Harry Potter’ series. Credit: Warner Bros. / press

The actor told Laverne that “[his] way of dealing with that [was] just to drink more or get more drunk, so I did a lot of that for a few years”.

He continued: “A lot of drinking that happened towards the end of Potter and for a little bit after it finished, it was panic, a little bit not knowing what to do next – not being comfortable enough in who I was to remain sober.”

Although he does not identify as an alcoholic, Radcliffe admitted his drinking had become problematic. After an initial attempt in 2010, the actor has now been sober since 2013, and praised his family and friends on set for providing him with “enough perspective on my life” to help him get through it.

Earlier this week (March 10), Radcliffe was forced to deny he has coronavirus, after becoming the subject of a widely spread Twitter hoax.


A fake BBC News Twitter account claimed that the star had tested positive for the virus, which continues to spread across the globe.

When asked if the actor had tested positive for the virus, a representative told BuzzFeed news: “No, not true.”

The fake account fooled Twitter users by borrowing the corporation’s recognisable branding and sharing a link to an old BBC News Alerts page.