Gary Oldman isn’t impressed with how he portrayed Sirius Black in the Harry Potter franchise.
“[Harry Potter] is the most frequent. If [a fan] asks me to sign a picture then that’s the one that comes up the most,” Oldman, 65, said during a live episode of the “Happy Sad Confused” podcast released on Thursday, December 28. “I think my work is mediocre in it.”
Host Josh Horowitz and the live audience were flabbergasted by Oldman’s revelation. While the actor appreciated the crowd’s support, he wished he took a cue from his late costar Alan Rickman at the time.
“Maybe if I had read the books like Alan, if I had got ahead of the curve, if I had known what’s coming, I honestly think I would have played it differently,” he reflected.
Oldman played fan favorite Sirius Black, godfather to Harry Potter, in the franchise from 2004 to 2011. He made his first appearance in the third film of the series, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. In the 2007 film, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Sirius tragically dies in the final battle with his cousin Bellatrix Lestrange (Helena Bonham Carter).
“They killed me off too early. I’m still upset about that,” he quipped on Thursday. “We were all taking bets [on who it would be] ‘It’s Hagrid’ and I was there going, ‘No no no, it’s going to be maybe Ron.’ Then you open up the script and you go, ‘It’s me, I’m out of here.”
Despite meeting his doom in the fifth movie, Oldman returned for a brief cameo in the final Harry Potter movie, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2.
While Oldman has a lot of love for what Harry Potter has done for his career, he also shared that he doesn’t feel like it was this singular performance he would redo if he had the chance.
“If I sat and watched myself in something and said, ‘My God, I’m amazing,’ that would be a very sad day because you want to make the next thing better,” he explained. “It’s so subjective, it’s such a personal thing that you’re looking at that other people are not seeing.”
Earlier this month, Oldman shared that he was grateful for his roles in the Harry Potter films and the Batman movies as they helped him find stability and a job close to home while he was a single father.
“Thank God for Harry Potter,” he said during a December appearance on the Drew Barrymore Show. “I tell you, the two, Batman and Harry Potter, really, they saved me because it meant that I could do the least amount of work for the most amount of money and then be home with the kids.”
Oldman explained that he previously turned down roles that filmed in exotic locations in Hungary, Budapest, Prague and Australia since he didn’t want to be away from his family. The actor shares son Alfie with ex-wife Lesley Manville in addition to sons Gulliver and Charlie with ex-wife Donya Fiorentino.