Rhys Ifans will be playing Luna Lovegood's father Xenophilius in the upcoming Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and we asked him what it was like joining that world while talking to him at SXSW for his latest film Mr. Nice. He had a rather unique analogy for the honor of being cast in the series, which you can read below or listen to the audio at the bottom of the post.
Cinematical: Speaking of Harry Potter, was that a weird world to step into?
Rhys Ifans: No, it wasn't. It was a rite of passage, in a way. There is no way in English culture that I would be rewarded for my endeavors. I am a bad boy from beginning to end. So, as an actor, being in Harry Potter, you get your stripes. As shallow as it sounds...
That doesn't really sound shallow at all.
It is a beautiful ... I'm really touched. I was really touched to participate in a ... what is a trilogy six times?
I don't even know if there is a word for it.
No. Whatever. I am just happy to have been a participant in the telling of that story. I am really touched. Harry Potter is an amazing brand. I am, you know, really touched. It is like getting a f**king medal. And I am a renegade. It is good. This is not an egotistical thing, but it is like, I guess, Johnny Rotten gets to f**k Lady Di in the tunnel, before she dies.