All Harry Potter fans are aware of the political themes woven throughout the series, and this past year, there was a heightened awareness of the political similarities between J.K. Rowling's novels and the real world. This was emphasized particularly by the ties between pureblood supremacy in the Wizarding World and the #MAGA agenda of Donald Trump. The parallels of Harry Potter politics are difficult to ignore, and, for film stars Tom Felton and Jason Isaacs, the connection between the Malfoys and Trump supporters are very clear.
At Universal Orlando's 4th annual "A Celebration of Harry Potter" event on January 27, Felton and Isaacs spoke about the real-world political connections to the series, how their characters would have reacted to the US elections, and how the Harry Potter story can help promote tolerance and acceptance worldwide.
Regarding Harry Potter politics and the support of President Trump, Isaacs said, "I think Lucius would have been all for him. He would have put a white pillow case on his head and charged up the hill." Isaacs went on in the interview to talk about the complexities of Lucius Malfoy as a villain who supported a supremacist leader. "Today’s Holocaust Memorial Day," he said at the press conference. "When I was playing Lucius, people would start to ask about him as if there was a kind of cardboard villain on the screen. But there’s a very recognizable racist, and eugenicist, and supremacist there acting out of fear and thinking that the past was a better time. He’s scared of muggles and scared of the future because of his place in it -- because he feels like his place was sometime ago when he was part of a super elite when he could look down on the rest of the world."
Isaacs addressed the obvious comparisons to current political climates in both the US and in the UK. "You don’t need to look too far without making cheap points to find many people, many politicians, standing up on those platforms. Those issues are never more relevant than today, that are dealt with in this kind of magical world with school boys... Jo’s books and stories and characters deal with incredibly powerful and pertinent issues in the modern world, but never in such a way that you feel like you’re being preached to." He believes it's one of the reasons why the books are so universal.
Felton added to Isaac's comments about the themes of the Harry Potter series being so timeless and relatable for audiences worldwide. "The passion and love for the films, it will slowly disintegrate. It has to, surely," he said. "But it’s not; it’s gone the opposite way. There have been more of these theme parks popping up around the world, there’s more and more excitement around it. There’s fans I’m meeting that weren’t born when we started making the films, which is insane to me. It feels crazy. It’s a very powerful and strong message and going back to the community of it as well. I think, without using the word religion, but it has that aspect where it can bring millions of people who feel slightly disenfranchised and disengaged with what’s happening in their own world, and it can give them something that feels real. It actually feels like something worth fighting for or something worth getting together and campaigning for, and it’s fun."
Watch the full press conference below featuring Tom Felton, Jason Isaacs, Matthew Lewis, and Warwick Davis: