Comic-Con: Film Beats Theater 'Every Time' for Daniel Radcliffe

The actor who found global fame playing Harry Potter, has dabbled in theater in recent years, but he says film is still his first love.
Daniel Radcliffe in "Horns"

Despite the accolades he's received for his work on the stage, Daniel Radcliffe's heart is squarely in the film world, the actor told the Hall H Comic Con crowd Friday.

"Film is where I grew up," he said when asked by a fan which acting medium he preferred, adding he had been on film sets since he was 9 due to being cast in Harry Potter. "There is no greater place of comfort. … All the things my teachers hated about me were now assets.

"Theater is a place where I learned to act better," he continued, saying it's a medium that requires a different set of disciplines. "But gun to my heard, [I'd chose] film every time."

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The actor, the embodiment of the Harry Potter phenomenon, was making his first appearance at the Con in conjunction with the release of the U.S. trailer for Horns, the Alexandre Aja-directed adaptation of the novel by Joe Hill, the son of author Stephen King.

It was, predictably, a lovefest for Radcliffe, with the 7000-strong Hall H crowd singing "Happy Birthday" to the star. (The actor turned 25 two days ago.)

The Q&A that followed the showing of a scene and the trailer from Horns was centered squarely on "the boy who lived." His fans revealed themselves to be smart, shy and sensitive. Many in the room thanked him for Potter.

"I never tire of hearing that," said Radcliffe, noting that he is appreciative of touching so many lives.

In Horns, Radcliffe plays a young man in the Pacific Northwest who wakes up with a set of growing devil-like horns on his head and imbued with a power that compels people to reveal their darkest secrets. One of the ways the actor prepared himself for the role was by listening to music such as Metallica, Megadeath, Radiohead and The Shivers. He also managed to get a song by the The Shivers group into the movie.

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He said he didn't have a hard time grasping an American accent since he grew up infused with American culture, and when he played with action figures as a boy, he gave them American accents. 

Judging from the footage shown,  Horns seems like a movie that is juggling many themes, from romance to scares to laughs. That was the intent of the book and the intent of the movie, according to Hill.

Hill described the movie as a bit of a throwback to movies from the 1970's that dared to cover more than one genre, adding that is how life is.

"I think that the human experience is richer than one emotional note," said Hill. "And for horror to be effective, to care about the characters, it is good to see them in comic moments, in tragic moments."

The Horns presentation was preceded by a look at Everly, an action movie (think Die Hard in a room) starring Salma Hayek and directed by Joe Lynch.

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Hayek said of all her characters she's ever played, "Everly is the most bad-assest of all." Her character is a woman kidnapped for slavery who ends up fighting a parade of bad guys streaming into the apartment in which she was held

Hayek hoped that the movie would attract both sexes, but especially women who may be in situations they feel trapped in or can't get out of.

"I hope they see this movie and (take inspiration from it)," she said. "But please don't go shooting anyone. It's a metaphor."