There is an upsetting amount of Neville Longbottom's backstory that is left out of the movies. So much so, that even Matthew Lewis, the actor who plays the part of Neville, feels that his character kind of got gypped. Neville, although he seems to be a secondary character, is actually part of the glue that ties many of the story's characters and plots together. So understandably, it can be easy to dismiss Neville as a background character if you have only seen the movies.
Neville's history begins before he is even born and how he turns out after the legendary Battle of Hogwarts may even be more surprising. Here are ten facts about Neville Longbottom that the movies leave out.
10 Neville Had a Terrible Childhood
In the books and the movies, Neville is portrayed as a wizard with a less than adequate skills set. In fact, even as a baby, his family considered the fact that he could be a Squib (a non-magical person born into a wizarding family). This is quickly proven wrong after his uncle accidentally drops him out of a window and Neville miraculously bounces back.
Then consider the fact that his parents are tortured and he is forced to live with his grandmother. Augusta Longbottom is not the caring, nurturing parental figure that Neville needs during his already tormenting childhood. And to add insult to injury, when he makes his way to Hogwarts, he is constantly at the butt of his peers' jokes and is ridiculed by his teaches for is inept abilities. Which gives more meaning to that famous line in his second year when Neville says, "why is it always me?"
9 Neville Wasn't Actually Bad At Magic
In both the films and the books, audiences are given the impression that Neville is a disaster when it comes to spells and potions. Readers know that the only subject he excels at seems to be Herbology, a subject that requires minimum wand use. However, the reason for this is because Neville is actually using his father's old wand. And since the wand chooses the wizard, it seems that his father's wand is just simply not compatible with Neville and explains why Neville's talent seems to get better in later films. In Deathly Hallows, Neville is finally able to get his own wand after his breaks during the Battle of the Department of Mysteries.
8 His Parents Are Alive
Neville gets to give a brief summary of his parents history in the Order of the Phoenix, but as readers well know, their story is severely cut short. In the films, it might be easy to assume that Neville's parents died at the hands of Bellatrix Lestrange's torture. In fact, even Harry, Ron, and Hermione surmise this during their first four years with Neville at Hogwarts.
During their fifth year, when the group is visiting Ron's father at St. Mungo's Hospital for Magical Maladies and Injuries, they run into Neville in the Janus Thickey Ward where he is visiting his parents. Neville seems embarrassed and ashamed at first, as his mother wanders over to him to give him a piece of wrapping paper as she clearly has the mindset of a child. It's a heart-wrenching moment but had to be cut to the film for time purposes. Matthew Lewis has spoken on his disappointment from this scene in particular not appearing in the films.
7 Neville Was Put Under The Imperious Curse
During the Goblet of Fire, Mad-Eye Moody becomes the Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher. This is when Neville and his classmates learn about the Unforgivable Curses. In the books, there is a scene where Neville actually endures the Imperious Curse.
Perhaps they keep this out of the films to contain a family-friendly rating. Moody puts him under the spell to let the class see what the curse is like. Moody has Neville perform "quite astonishing gymnastics" tricks which he is not able to do otherwise. This is a particularly cruel event in Neville's life considering this is how his parents end up in their current condition.
6 He Asked Hermione To The Yule Ball
Hermione is a friend to Neville from the first time the ride the Hogwarts Express. You may remember her in the first film, when she is helping search the train for Neville's toad, Trevor. However, Hermione continues this act of kindness throughout the years at Hogwarts together. So naturally, Neville develops somewhat of a crush on Hermione and asks her to the Yule Ball. She declines since she has already accepted the invitation from Viktor Krum.
Fun fact: Lewis apparently had a real-life crush on Emma Watson around the time that they filmed the Yule Ball scene.
5 He Is Tortured... A Lot
The first time that we see Neville involved in some kind of "torture" is when Hermione hits him with the Petrificus Totalus body-binding spell. Although her intentions are good, it's still a traumatizing moment for him. Neville also suffers a series of cruel spells and jinxes from Draco Malfoy throughout his years at Hogwarts before he is subject to real torture by Death Eaters. During the Battle of the Department of Mysteries, the Death Eater Dolohov breaks not only Neville's wand but also breaks his nose. Then during his seventh year, under a Death Eater-run Hogwarts, Neville undergoes several beatings and torture for refusing to listen to their ruling and for, surprisingly, his snarky remarks.
4 His Hogwarts Resistance Caused Trouble For His Grandmother
In the films, when Harry and his friends return to Hogwarts for the final battle, Neville appears and fills them in one everything that has been happening at Hogwarts. He has restarted Dumbledore's Army and has a group of student soldiers ready to help him take down Voldemort.
What they fail to mention here is that after constantly defying the Death Eater, they decide that Neville is not worth the trouble and they make a move to kill him. Neville escapes into the Room of Requirement where he rendezvous with the D.A. In attempts to find him, they actually also go after Neville's grandmother in hopes it would intimidate him enough to return. Thankfully she evades capture and is able to go on the run.
3 Voldemort Set Him On Fire
In the final book, Voldemort's grand commentary involves him telling the Hogwarts student that there will be no more Sorting Ceremony. He brings out the Sorting Hat and tells everyone that they will all be in Slytherin. Voldemort then magically places the hat on Neville's head and puts him in the Body-Binding spell. Then he says, "Neville here is now going to demonstrate what happens to anyone foolish enough to continue to oppose me." And he sets the Sorting Hat on fire. Yeah, that's a real thing that happens in the books. At that moment, an army of students and Grawp the giant comes to face Voldemort and Neville is able to escape his solo torture chamber. This is the moment that the Sword of Gryffindor presents itself to him.
2 He Could Have Been The Chosen One
This is a well-known fact by now, but it is so fascinating and disappointing that it isn't in the films. Voldemort could have chosen either Harry or Neville to be the "Chosen One" is such a pivotal turning point in the series. In the books, Dumbledore tells Harry that the prophecy is referring to one of two possible people: him or Neville Longbottom. Voldemort ultimately chooses Harry as his equal. This is simply because they are both not from pure-blood wizarding families, while Neville's surname belongs to the Sacred Twenty-Eight. Out of all the storylines about Neville to include in the movies, this should have been a top contender.
1 Neville After Hogwarts
Despite what the films have audiences, believe, Neville does not live life happily ever after with Luna Lovegood. Instead, he briefly joins the Ministry of Magic as an Auror before settling down as a Herbology teacher at Hogwarts.
He ends up marrying his fellow Hogwarts classmate, Hannah Abbott. Neville also becomes the godfather of Albus Potter, Harry and Ginny's son.