The Harry Potter film series did an amazing job bringing the beloved characters from the books to the big screen. Fans were left with relatively few complaints about the movies. For the most part, they were perfectly casted and well-adapted from the books, with some notable exceptions.
However, that's not to say they could not have been improved in certain ways. The films were working with limited time, the constraints of special effects and makeup, and the usual challenges of converting a book to a movie in a compelling way. This leaves a lot of room to explore what could have been done with the series.
Fan artists have taken to the internet to share their own interpretations and redesigns of their favorite characters in the Harry Potter books. Their visions of the characters are often significantly different from the movies, sometimes to make them more accurate to the book and sometimes to explore interesting facets of the character.
The movies were amazing in many ways, but these artists' takes on the characters are also incredibly compelling. These are the creative redesigns fans have dreamed up to bring these amazing characters to life.
Here are 20 Harry Potter Fan Redesigns Way Better Than The Movies.
20 Draco Malfoy
Draco Malfoy, despite all of his faults and bullying, managed to find a soft spot in the hearts of many Harry Potter fans, and that affection for him has lent to some interesting fan art. Although this artwork is a more unique deviation from the portrayal of Draco, DeviantArt user HollyBell presents an interesting redesign of his character.
The character design is influenced by an old Victorian style, presumably meant to reflect Draco's pureblood heritage in the wealthy old wizarding families of Malfoy and Black. It lends a certain nobility to his character that he did not possess in the films.
In addition to the Victorian style, he is dressed mostly in a Slytherin green, a departure from his mostly black wardrobe from the movies.
His hair is also kept longer in a more Victorian style that is also closer to his portrayal as an adult in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. The artwork also features Draco's pet owl that was with him at Hogwarts, only briefly glimpsed in the films, which helps to humanize him a little more. Overall, this redesign gives Draco more personality and individual style while further emphasizing the hard and arrogant traits he already showed.
19 Luna Lovegood
Luna Lovegood's unabashed quirky spirit and unique style made her a fun addition to Harry Potter's band of friends. She acted and dressed exactly as she liked, not ashamed of her offbeat nature. Throughout the series, Luna wore Spectrespecs, Butterbeer cork jewelry, and a lion head hat and an eagle to show her support for Gryffindor and Ravenclaw respectively.
Tumblr user cseguritanart created a slightly different take on Luna. While her accessories were always interesting, her clothes in the movies were often a bit plain. This artist gave Luna bright, colorful clothing and shoes to match. Thankfully, this seems to be on a day when no one stole Luna's shoes. Her bright clothes are accented by a ribbon headband and her Spectrespecs. Even her stance reflects the free-spirited and dreamy attitude she usually adopted as she casts her hare Patronus with ease.
Luna's outfit in this art seems like a cross between 1960s hippie couture and Ms. Frizzle from The Magic School Bus, both of which feel like styles that Luna would wholeheartedly embrace. It would have been lovely to see Luna's personal expression develop and expand more as the movies went on, and this artist shows what that might look like.
18 Bellatrix Lestrange
Bellatrix Lestrange's demented cruelty was played excellently in the movie by Helena Bonham Carter, who fully embraced her unhinged nature after escaping from Azkaban. However, this art by DeviantArt user LeskaArt shows a different side of Bellatrix that the movies were never able to properly explore.
Long before Azkaban, Bellatrix was part of the pure-blood Black family, essentially the wealthy nobility in the wizarding world. She was supposed to possess the beauty of her family, greatly resembling her sister Andromeda Tonks. It was her time in Azkaban that changes her appearance, giving her a hollow and skull-like face. Her imprisonment also made her more unstable, turning her into the Bellatrix that Bonham Carter perfectly reflected.
These artworks show a glimpse of what Bellatrix was like before Azkaban and perhaps before Voldemort.
She has a noble, even regal appearance that reflects the wealth of her family and her pride and arrogance in her pure-blood status. She also clearly carries the gorgeous family looks. The most interesting part of this artwork is her resemblance to Nymphadora Tonks, Sirius Black, and Narcissa Malfoy of the movies. Despite the family appearance, this portrayal still has shades of Bonham Carter to resemble what Bellatrix will later turn into.
17 Hermione at the Yule Ball
Hermione's dress at the Yule Ball was intended to dazzle us and present Hermione as a woman for the first time. While the books established she wore a blue dress to the Yule Ball, the movies changed this to a pink dress. The costume designer, Jany Temime, apparently chose the color change to reflect her femininity more.
Temine said of her design, "[Hermione] was always the best of the class. She was a tough girl. She was a girl [who only hung out] with boys. And now she appears at the Yule Ball and she’s in pink. People look at her as being a girl, and a very pretty one, which was not established before. It was a lovely dress. It was quite difficult to design because... I didn’t want her to look like she borrowed a dress from her mom or her sister or whatever."
DeviantArt user Catherine-PL had a different view of Hermione's Yule Ball dress. The artist sticks with the book-accurate blue dress, but also makes the dress dazzling and feminine in its own right. Peacock feathers are expertly blended in with the skirt, a feature made possible by the change back to blue. The peacock theme is carried through the entire dress with peacock feature straps on the back and a peacock head design in the front.
Dumbledore's story tied together much of the background of the wizarding world, as he mysteriously moved in the background with much more knowledge than he was willing to admit to Harry Potter and his friends. He had a hand in many parts of recent wizarding history, as he lived to a quite ancient age while maintaining his position as Headmaster of Hogwarts.
This art of Dumbledore by DeviantArt user albus119 is a bittersweet picture. The title "30 June, 1997" is a reference to the last day of Dumbledore's life, the day of the fatal Battle of the Astronomy Tower. At that time, Dumbledore was 115 years old, and this depiction of him better reflects his age than Michael Gambon's portrayal did, opting for a Dumbledore that looks more like the original Richard Harris version.
At the time, Dumbledore knew the cursed ring was about to end his life, and his cursed hand can be seen in the background.
This depiction gives Dumbledore a sweet moment with Fawkes the phoenix, who seems to be shedding tears for him, perhaps in anticipation of mourning.
However, even in this sad moment, it reflects Dumbledore's cheerful and jovial nature with the look on his face.
15 Death Eaters
The Death Eaters of the Harry Potter movie series were rather simply designed, mostly disguising themselves in plain black cloaks and skull-like masks. It reflected their radical and morbid views about pureblood status and conquering the wizarding world. However, DeviantArt user AlexLazar has a different take on the design of Voldemort's henchmen.
Instead of the simple design of the movies, this Death Eater costume is extremely elaborate. The cloak is made in a flowing style that billows out and makes the wearer seem more imposing. The cloak is also lined in gold and seems to become wispy and ethereal around its dark edges. The headpiece looks almost like a crown, and it's lit by a blue glow to appear almost supernatural. The skull mask is still worked into the design, but it's a very small part of the threatening figure.
The regal nature of the gold-lined robes and crown reflects the Death Eater view of pureblood supremacy, as if asserting their right to rule the wizarding world and the world at large. It captures the ideology of the Death Eaters within the costume itself. It also presents a more impressive visual that would certainly frighten any intended victim or bystander.
Hagrid the lovable half-giant was easily among many readers' favorite characters. The combination of his strong, imposing form and his kind and warm nature made him an invaluable friend at Hogwarts. Robbie Coltrane was an excellent Hagrid and captured his spirit beautifully, but DeviantArt user tonton-jojo had a different picture in mind for Hagrid.
This depiction of Hagrid better suggests his great height and strength.
It emphasizes his large features, such as his hands which were meant to be as large as trash can lids. It retains many of Hagrid's signature features, such as his long, shaggy hair and the beard that obscures most of his face, as well as his clothes that appear to be hand-made from animal skins. This Hagrid appears slightly leaner, but still large enough to fit the character description.
The biggest difference between the two depictions of Hagrid is the age that he appears to be. Robbie Coltrane had a youthful appearance, whereas the artist shows Hagrid as an older man, a little more haggard and grey. However, since he was supposed to have been born in 1928, that would put Hagrid in his 60s during the events of the Harry Potter series, making the age difference fit well.
13 Sirius Black
Sirius Black is one of the most tragic characters of the series. Falsely imprisoned in Azkaban and accused of betraying his best friend, he escaped his imprisonment to uncover the true traitor behind the attack on James and Lily Potter. Sirius was considered handsome in his youth, but the years in Azkaban took a toll on him just as they did on Bellatrix.
Tumblr user M.Spencer Illustration presents a picture of Sirius Black after his escape from Azkaban that better reflects the horrible treatment he would have endured. While Gary Oldman's Sirius Black certainly looked unkempt after his escape, this portrayal of Sirius rings truer as the picture of an escaped fugitive. According to the books' description, he had long, matted hair and a gaunt face, creating a rough picture of his life in Azkaban.
This artist emphasizes the hollowed out features of his face, the wild hair and unshaven face of a prisoner-turned-fugitive with no way to stay groomed, and the tired and angry expression on his face. They also further highlight the tattoos branded on his chest. This version of Sirius would have made his years of suffering keenly apparent to everyone, and he would have seemed an unhinged and threatening figure to encounter.
The casting of a black actress, Noma Dumezweni, as Hermione in Harry Potter and the Cursed Child created an important question about Hermione's appearance. Many readers assumed her to be light-skinned, but the casting threw that assumption out the window. It was also an interesting idea for many people who felt more represented and included in the story this way, as the Harry Potter series is otherwise rather light on non-white characters.
While many readers still believed Hermione was written as white, J.K. Rowling defended the interpretation. Rowling tweeted in response, "Canon: brown eyes, frizzy hair and very clever. White skin was never specified. Rowling loves black Hermione." Some readers still argued the point, but others fully embraced the possibility the Hermione could be black.
Although we got to see this black portrayal of Hermione as an adult, artists like Tumblr user aeyon took to their art to show what young Hermione would look like in this interpretation.
With darker skin, she naturally maintains her usual bushy dark hair, brown eyes, and assertive air.
No matter how you feel about whether or not Hermione should be black within the story, this is still an intriguing and beautiful visual of Hermione.
11 Viktor Krum
Viktor Krum was one of a handful of characters that fans noticed did not exactly match his description in the books when he was cast in the movies. In the books, Krum is described as thin, dark, and sallow with a sharp profile. In the movies, he's played by Stanislav Ianevski, who was a bit too brawny and looked too much like a standard jock for some fans to feel he fit the part. His buzz-cut hair also didn't seem to match the emphasis on Krum's dark hair from the books. Fans even pointed out that some of the actors standing next to Ianevski looked more like Krum than he did.
DeviantArt user sachi813 made her own interpretation of Krum, drawing from the description in the book and overlaying celebrities who fit the part.
She used a combination of Adrien Brody, Richard Armitage, and Aidan Turner to create a more book-accurate version of Viktor Krum. The result is a thin, sharp, somewhat gaunt Krum who manages to perfectly fit the description of looking like a bird of prey and appearing older than eighteen. He has many of the features of Krum that Ianevski lacks, like thick eyebrows, a curved nose, and dark hair.
10 James and Sirius
In case any fan artists were still wondering, J.K. Rowling does, in fact, look at fan art. Rowling once revealed this particular artwork as her favorite. This artwork by DeviantArt user artofpan is particularly bittersweet, showing a picture of James Potter and Sirius Black in 1978 as they would have looked moving into their first apartment out of Hogwarts.
James and Sirius are both eighteen here. James looks much like Harry did at that age and retains a far more youthful look than his portrayal in the movies did. Sirius Black is a handsome, rebellious-looking young man, still long before his years of mistreatment in Azkaban.
It's a snapshot of a happy memory in their lives marred by the fact that James only lived three more years after this picture was taken and Sirius was sent to Azkaban soon after.
The films did a poor job of reminding the audience how young James, Sirius, and their friends were when Voldemort tore apart all of their lives. Even in the pictures of their youth in the Order of the Phoenix, it's hard to remember they were only 21 years old when all of this happened during the First Wizarding War.
9 Lily Evans
Lily Evans sadly only made scarce appearances in the Harry Potter movies, usually only in brief memories, photographs, or as a spirit from the Resurrection Stone. She is mainly played by Geraldine Somerville, who was already in her 30s when she began filming in the series and looked her age. It was a strange casting choice for a woman who did not live past 21 years old.
A younger version of Lily Evans hardly appeared at all in the series. In general, most of the casting in the movies used actors that were older than their characters were intended to be, but it stuck out the most in the cases of Lily Evans and James Potter, who met their end at such an incredibly young age.
Tumblr user lily-lou-love gives us the picture of young Lily Evans we never quite got to see. She has a youthful appearance and a carefree air, and she is dressed in a style inspired by the 1970s, when she would have been attending Hogwarts. She wears a crown of flowers, a nice touch as she was shown using her magic to grow flowers as a child. In this piece, she seems as bright, warm, and full of life as she is described to be in the books.
8 Ron and Hermione
One of the weak points of the film series was the portrayal of Ron, as it gave most of his positive attributes to Hermione and left him as a relatively unlikable character in comparison to the books. The blossoming relationship between Ron and Hermione also took a hit from this portrayal. Ron was consistently insulting her in the movies, which is not exactly a strong foundation for an adult relationship. The romance was given very little time to naturally develop, as well, and seem to almost come out of nowhere in the films.
DeviantArt user lila-selle created this fan art around Ron and Hermione setting up a better portrayal of the couple and Ron specifically. Ron's appearance is closer to the books, as he is thinner with more apparent freckles and a longer nose, matching his literary description.
More importantly, though, Ron and Hermione show more easy, natural affection toward each other with the body language in this artwork than they ever did in the films.
They related to each other awkwardly in the movies, and this piece shows them in a more pleasant and cheerful interaction.
This fan art hints at a more natural relationship between the two characters that could have been better developed within the films.
7 Voldemort's Request
Even with eight movies, there were many incredible scenes that the Harry Potter films just couldn't manage to fit into the story with limited time. DeviantArt user RisingMonster illustrated one of those scenes from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. In this scene from the book, Dumbledore remembered a meeting long ago with Tom Riddle.
Riddle applied for the position of Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher and met with Dumbledore trying to obtain the position. During the meeting, Tom Riddle appears in a form somewhere between the young and fully human Riddle from former years and the inhuman visage of Voldemort. Dumbledore questioned his motives and rejected him for the position, revealing he knew Riddle was known by a new name.
In this depiction of the scene, Dumbledore is clearly much younger, not yet greyed. Tom Riddle still maintains a vestige of his handsome features, but his face has begun to turn to Voldemort's appearance. His eyes have already gone red as Voldemort's were in the book, and he looks pale, hollowed, and drawn as if life has been drained from him. While he is still recognizable, it's clear he's no longer human and is becoming something else entirely.
6 Lucius Malfoy
By the time of the second rise of Voldemort, Draco's father Lucius Malfoy did not seem to take much of an active role in Voldemort's plans. He appeared in few of the battles, and he mainly functioned to scheme in the background, using his respectable reputation to further Voldemort's goals. By the time Lucius was in a position to take an active role in Voldemort's army, he was no longer committed to the Dark Lord's cause.
DeviantArt user Asahisuperdry shows Lucius Malfoy in a more active role as a Death Eater in the First Wizarding War.
The artist intended for this to be a younger, more powerful Malfoy at the height of his strength, engaged in a darker war for Voldemort's first rise to power.
The books suggest Lucius had a more central role in the first war, even leading the torture of Muggles, though he later claimed this was all under the influence of the Imperius Curse.
The artist shows Lucius Malfoy in the usual Death Eater cloak and mask, but the rest of the costume is more warrior-like than those used in the second war. His telltale pale blond, almost white hair can be seen spilling out of the cloak. The Lucius Malfoy of the movies seemed so tempered by respectable society that this vision of Lucius as a footsoldier is a striking visual.
5 Sirius Black
Sirius Black's story inspires a significant amount of fan art, as he was so important in the lives of both the Marauders and Harry Potter's Trio. Gary Oldman played an excellent Sirius Black in the movies, but DeviantArt user byLau reinterpreted the character here to show a different side of Sirius.
This artist's interpretation seems significantly younger than Oldman's portrayal.
Sirius was greatly affected and probably aged by his time in Azkaban, but this also shows how young Sirius was in the story. He only lived to 36 years old, so he likely would have looked fairly young through the extent of his life. This artwork is likely meant to be post-Azkaban Sirius, as his hair is wilder and his face more sunken than it might have been in his youth. With the wildness of his looks, he also bears a closer resemblance to his cousin Bellatrix Lestrange.
In the books, the young Sirius Black is described as possessing the aristocratic beauty and striking looks of the Black family and an elegant air, though this was somewhat changed by the time he escaped from prison. His clothes here show both the refinement of his noble family and the casual and unkempt attitude he seemed to adopt after he left Azkaban.
4 Harry and Ginny
Out of all the characters who got shortchanged by the movies, Ginny was the most unfortunate victim of the adaptation from the books. Although she was a strong, outspoken character and an important friend of Harry's in the books, she was barely even seen in the films before she was introduced for her romantic subplot. Most of her interesting characteristics were discarded for the films, making her a quiet and bland background character for most of the series.
DeviantArt user Salzburger89 redesigned Harry and Ginny in their post-Hogwarts days to better reflect their personalities. Ginny is in athletic attire, as she is playing Quidditch for the Holyhead Harpies. The artist discarded the usual Quidditch robes for more efficient athletic wear, as the robes seemed like they would get in the way too much and would not be as aerodynamic as this uniform.
In this redesign, Harry is in Auror training, dressed in standard Muggle clothing, which could be an asset if the Auror needs to move between the wizarding and Muggle worlds to investigate crimes or pursue dark wizards wherever they may be.
However, the best feature of the artwork is how well the artist managed to capture the strong, confident attitude of both characters, something the films sadly lacked.
The Harry Potter series introduced a variety of magical creatures of the wizarding world, but nothing as fear-inducing as the Dementors. The Dementors are described as wraith-like creatures wrapped in black cloth with cold, decaying bodies. They have no eyes, only empty eye sockets, and gaping mouths made for sucking the soul out of a person. Many fan artists have put their own spin on the wraith-like figures, adapting their horrifying features to create the best version of the iconic monsters.
DeviantArt user Vassy17 created this interpretation of the Dementors, playing up the skeletal features of the dark creatures. The Dementor's hood and cloak are more sheer in this adaptation, revealing the eerie figure underneath. The body almost entirely resembles a skeleton, showing a skull-like face, an apparent ribcage, and its long and bony arms and hands.
Adding to the terror of its features, the proportions of the figure also present an uncomfortable picture. It seems to be unnaturally tall with an unusually long neck and arms that seem to stretch to the length of over half of its body. Whereas the Dementors of the film were mostly obscured except for a few intense glimpses at their faces, the revealed skeletal body here only adds to the terror the Dementors create.
2 Remus Lupin
Remus Lupin was a complicated character who required a complicated portrayal, served well by David Thewlis in the film series. Based on his description in the books, Remus' appearance was worn beyond his age by the stress of living as a werewolf. His face was aged with premature lines and his hair turned grey throughout his thirties. Despite his lycanthropy aging him, it's important to note that Remus was only around 33 years old when he first appears in the series.
Tumblr user dasstark reimagined Remus Lupin with this in mind, as he appears much younger here than he did in the movies, more as a man of 33 might look. Although he seems younger, he still appears thinned and tired.
The artist made the scars on his face much more dramatic than they were shown to be in the movies, making his appearance more striking.
Whether or not the depiction fits better with the description of Remus Lupin's apparent age, this is an intriguing variation that creates a stark and sad reminder of how short a time all of the Marauders lived. At the Battle of Hogwarts, Lupin was 38 years old, and he survived longer than any of the other Marauders.
With monstrous characters, the creativity of bringing them to life is often tempered by the constraints of makeup and prostheses. While the Voldemort of the movies was certainly a frightening figure, he could still have been even more so. Voldemort is described as possessing bone-white skull-like and reptilian features, long fingers like a spider's legs, cat-like slit pupils, snake-like slits for nostrils, and having no hair or lips.
Tumblr user aeyon created this interpretation of Voldemort to add and emphasize all of these terrifying features. In this artwork, he truly looks like a reptile with scaly skin, long and pronounced slits at the nose, thin lips that blend with his skin, and long and narrow eyes with slit pupils. His face is extremely gaunt, giving him skull-like features. His hand that sticks out to clutch his wand looks long and thin, almost skeletal. It looks as if everything that made Voldemort human is completely gone, replaced by something else.
These drastically reptilian and skeletal features would have made Ralph Fiennes' stirring performance that much more horrifying. This design obviously would be much more difficult to execute on an actor, especially with only practical effects. Fortunately, artful redesigns like this show us how Voldemort might have looked with no constraints of practicality.
What's your favorite piece of Harry Potter fan art? Let us know in the comments!