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“Would he do it?”: X-Men Star Michael Fassbender Unknowingly Inspired Daniel Radcliffe to Leave Harry Potter Fame Behind to Become Real Actor

michael fassbender as magneto and daniel radcliffe as harry potter

The path of an actor can be difficult, especially if they have become identified with a single role. Star actor Daniel Radcliffe had to deal with the pressure of going from child star to respected actor after his breakout role as the beloved wizard Harry Potter.

Radcliffe, though, was inspired by an unlikelier source: actor Michael Fassbender, who is perhaps best known for playing Magneto in the X-Men films.

How a Guiding Principle Shaped Daniel Radcliffe’s Choices

Daniel Radcliffe
Daniel Radcliffe

To escape the shadow cast by his most famous role, Daniel Radcliffe set out to demonstrate his versatility and range as an actor. At first, he was eager to demonstrate his versatility by playing various roles, but later, he shifted his attention to the stories that truly interested him.

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During this transition, Radcliffe found inspiration in the career choices of Michael Fassbender, who became an unintentional mentor. After leaving the Harry Potter franchise, Daniel Radcliffe understood the importance of building a resume that showcased his talents in various genres.

Radcliffe revealed the “Fassbender test,” a set of guidelines he and director James Watkins came up with, in an interview with The Guardian.

“If you’re ever being asked to do anything, you just ask yourself a question: ‘Would Michael Fassbender do it?’”

In Radcliffe’s mind, Fassbender exemplified the ideal actor who willingly pursued roles that stretch and expand his abilities. Radcliffe used the test as a guide for determining whether a particular role or project was in line with his acting goals.

Michael Fassbender
Michael Fassbender

As a result, it became a tool for elevating conceptual weight and artistic rigor over financial gain. For Radcliffe, the Fassbender test was a useful tool but also an important lesson for other aspiring actors.

Radcliffe’s inquiry was meant to get his contemporaries thinking about the projects they were working on in terms of their artistic value and how they might contribute to their development.  Daniel Radcliffe had a difficult time distancing himself from Harry Potter.

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He had the insight to know that the best way to steer his career was not through appeasing the expectations of his fans but through being true to himself. Radcliffe told Entertainment Tonight that he needs to focus on his own development as an actor rather than pandering to his audience’s wants and needs.

As time passed, Radcliffe stopped caring so much about proving his adaptability and started picking roles for which he felt a strong artistic connection. He was pleased with how his career accommodated his desire to play various characters.

Radcliffe’s decision-making process was driven by his love of acting and his desire to take on roles that would stretch him as an artist rather than by a desire to move away from his Harry Potter persona.

Radcliffe’s Evolution: From Fan Expectations to Personal Growth

Daniel Radcliffe
Daniel Radcliffe

Following his graduation from Hogwarts, Daniel Radcliffe’s career has been a mixed bag. Some works may have been well-received by fans and critics, while others may have floundered. Nonetheless, Radcliffe is unapologetic for his actions and considers everything he goes through a valuable learning experience.

Recently, he has succeeded with the feature film Weird: The Al Yankovic Story, which critics and moviegoers praised. The film is a great example of Radcliffe’s versatility as an actor, demonstrating his willingness to try new things in his roles.

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Although Radcliffe is optimistic, she knows that not every undertaking will be met with the same level of success. During an appearance on The Talk, Radcliffe said he was happy with his career and didn’t regret passing on any roles.

He follows his gut and thinks that every experience, whether positive or negative, has helped him develop as an actor. As Radcliffe continues to shape his career, he inspires aspiring actors to chart their own courses, reminding them to follow their hearts and be true to their artistic goals.

Taking cues from Michael Fassbender’s unintentional mentorship and applying the Fassbender test, Daniel Radcliffe has created a distinct and varied career, escaping the shadow of Harry Potter.

Source: BAFTA Guru

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Written by Mabel Andrady

Mabel, aka MJ, is a FandomWire Sr. Writer, pop-culture fanatic, and an MA in Health Demography holder. When she's not indulging in her guilty pleasure of penning everything Hollywood, Marvel & DC, she writes academic essays on COVID-19 and HIV/AIDS. With 2500+ articles published online, she brings a unique twist to entertainment writing. A jack-of-all-trades, MJ enjoys movies, writes/acts in plays, writes music, and dreams of being a successful actress. She offers a fresh perspective, making her writing a must-read for those seeking knowledge and entertainment.