Though acting for over a decade, Lily James really exploded onto the scene recently, charming audiences with her performances in Yesterday and Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again. We’ve examined some of her most interesting roles to find out just where her characters would wind up if they attended Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
For those who need a refresher, Hogwarts is the magic school in the Harry Potter franchise. Its students are housed in four different branches based on their personalities: Gryffindor, Slytherin, Ravenclaw or Hufflepuff. Let's see how these Lily James characters fare!
10 Cinderella (Cinderella): Hufflepuff
Is there any Disney princess who works harder or shows more kindness than Cinderella? With those two traits alone, she’s definitely a Hufflepuff.
Of course, Cinderella also has loyalty in an inordinately large amount. Despite the way she’s treated by her stepmother and stepsisters, Cinderella stays with them. Perhaps it’s because they’re her only connection to her father. Either way, her loyalty to the family, working for them, and attempting to stay out of the way prove her the ultimate Hufflepuff. It’s a good thing she finds her way to a happy ending.
9 Debora (Baby Driver): Gryffindor
Debora doesn’t initially seem like she’s up for a big adventure. She just wants the open road and a good soundtrack. Her near encyclopedic knowledge of music almost sorts her into Ravenclaw. However, the way she responds in a time of crisis during the big turn in Baby Driver reveals she’s more of a Gryffindor.
Despite her fear and confusion, Debora keeps her cool when Baby steps into the diner with three people who are clearly up to no good. Other than a shaking hand as she pours coffee, she doesn’t waver when Buddy pulls a gun on her either. She’s even able to act as bait for a speeding car, and she helps Baby bring Buddy to an end. As the police close in on Baby, Debora is willing to spend the rest of her life running with him to help him get away. She has the bravery of a lion.
8 Juliet (The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society): Ravenclaw
The only Ravenclaw amongst Lily James’ selected roles, Juliet certainly stands out. She is a writer who travels to meet the titular Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.
In the movie, Juliet feels like she’s supposed to settle down in England and become a wife. The trouble is she doesn’t want to. Instead, she decides to travel to Canada to learn more about a society a reader wrote letters to her about. She wants to know everything about it. Juliet also enjoys her time with the society, giving her the chance to learn new perspectives about literature and life. As much as Juliet loves learning and searching for the truth, she couldn’t be sorted into any other Hogwarts house.
7 Elizabeth Bennett (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies): Gryffindor
The novel Pride and Prejudice and Zombies was inspired by Jane Austen’s literary classic. It imagined a world where the Bennett sisters had to contend with more than just society expecting them to marry; it also expected them to slay zombies. The movie created a visual feast for fans of the genre mashup.
Gryffindor is all Elizabeth Bennett could be; she bucks tradition. Elizabeth doesn’t want to marry well just because her mother tells her to. She allows her prejudice toward the wealthy to often dictate her reactions to them. In spite of that, Elizabeth has a good heart. With this version of her story, she would never leave someone behind when she had the means to save them. Elizabeth Bennett is always ready to save the day.
6 Deb (Little Woods): Gryffindor
This one might not look like a Gryffindor at first glance. In Little Woods, Deb is a down on her luck single mom. She lives in a trailer—that doesn’t even belong to her—in the middle of a parking lot. She went from exotic dancer to waitress in a small town where no one ever seems to get ahead. Despite all of that, she and her sister Ollie take big risks to better themselves. Deb hides Ollie’s stash of pills in her trailer so that Ollie can make enough money to save their childhood home. Deb also crosses the border to Canada illegally to get medical help. Everything she does, Deb does with her son in mind. She doesn’t want him stuck, so she takes those big risks to make their life better.
5 Sara (Burnt): Hufflepuff
Though Burnt's Sara doesn’t spend much time on screen, she’s relatively easy for the Sorting Hat to place. In her single scene, it’s clear she’s a Hufflepuff.
Sara is the girlfriend of Daniel, one of the cooks recruited for Adam’s kitchen staff. Her one scene includes her waking up in the middle of the night to Adam in their kitchen, wondering if he’s okay. She also admits that he scares her, before agreeing with her boyfriend that it’s okay for him to stay with them. This is because working at Adam's kitchen is a great career move for Daniel. Both Sara's loyalty to Daniel, and her willingness to give a strange chef his second chance, make her a Hufflepuff.
4 Mieke (The Exception): Gryffindor
When the audience first meets Mieke in The Exception, she appears to be a Hufflepuff. She does what she’s told without questioning anything, just like a loyal employee would. A reveal early in the film, however, provides her truly brave nature.
Mieke isn’t just a maid in the house of former German royalty during World War II. She’s also an agent of the English government, planted there by Winston Churchill himself. Mieke isn’t the best at hiding her feelings, but she is prepared to do whatever she has to, as she seeks justice for those who lost their lives to the Gestapo. She values morality above all else, which is why she comes to care for the man she works for, and the soldier who won’t just follow orders. Mieke is absolutely a Gryffindor.
3 Lady Rose (Downton Abbey): Slytherin
Though Lily James spends more time on the big screen these days, she got her start on the small screen. Her earlier roles were in British television shows. One of those was Downton Abbey, where she played Lady Rose.
Though Lady Rose is bubbly and sweet, the nature of her upbringing made sure she became a Slytherin. Unlike a lot of highborn women, Lady Rose didn’t have the ambition to marry wealthy; she simply wanted to be free of her mother. That desire led to her learning to scheme. She lied, snuck around, and regularly tried to find ways to get back at her mother. Lady Rose was also able to discern blackmail schemes from those around her— and find ways to turn the tables, becoming one crafty Slytherin.
2 Ellie (Yesterday): Hufflepuff
Ellie spends the early part of Yesterday as the best friend. She does whatever she can to make her buddies happy. Ellie chauffeurs those who can't drive, attends dinner parties, and even acts as a music manager when she’s not teaching her students. She finally reaches a point where she realizes her loyalty can’t only be to her friends. Ellie also has to put herself first, saying no to something her best friend might really want in order to make sure she doesn’t put herself in a position that would only make her more unhappy.
1 Donna (Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again): Gryffindor
Could the Sorting Hat put Donna Sheridan anywhere other than Gryffindor? Yes, Donna’s incredibly hardworking in the first film, but she didn’t become that way overnight. This sequel shows the bravery it took to get her to the point of opening her own hotel. Donna is largely a dreamer. She strikes out on her own, looking for adventure. That adventure leads her to a whole new life on a tiny island in Greece with a baby. Donna raises the baby and starts a business, mostly on her own, while singing in a local restaurant. That all takes some serious guts.