‘Of Course I Fell Down The Stairs’: Emma Watson Tells The Story Behind Her Extreme Discomfort During One Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire Scene

Out of all the memories the Harry Potter cast have shared over the years, there’s a fair share of moments where shooting the eight-film saga got to be a bit much for all involved. Actor Emma Watson’s contribution to that particular subject was a day of extreme discomfort that saw a scene from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire turn from a symbolic moment in our hero’s teenage journey into a literal fall down the stairs.

Emma Watson sits in a pink dress with a look of disgust in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

How Emma Watson’s Fall Down The Stairs Came To Be

During Max’s Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts reunion special, the Beauty and the Beast performer who put herself on the map as Hermione Granger shared this unfortunate happening. As she described the scene where Hermione first steps out in her pink gown for the Yule Ball, Watson painted the following picture of distress:

Mike Newell coached me to walk down the stairs in the dress. ‘Your arms are swinging too much. You’re walking too quickly. You need to walk slower.’ Like, he’s giving me a million different directions about how to walk down the stairs. And, of course, I fell down the stairs.

With so many instructions being given during the production of this Harry Potter moment, Emma Watson’s lack of surprise falling down the stairs is understood. Those iconic stone walkways already looked difficult to walk down while wearing those flowing Hogwarts school robes; and introducing such a fine gown into the mix probably felt like a recipe for disaster from the jump.

Two factors seem to mitigate this unfortunate happening during its mention among the many memorable Harry Potter reunion moments. Thankfully, the first is that Emma Watson doesn’t mention any serious injuries from her tumble. Secondly, it’s because of that lack of injury that probably helped her still see why this piece of Goblet of Fire was so important in the first place.

Daniel Radcliffe sits uncomfortably between a fighting Emma Watson and Rupert Grint at the Yule Ball in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

Why This Harry Potter Scene Was Such An Important Deal In The First Place

On the surface, Hermione’s first, and potentially only moment of glam in the Harry Potter movies came at a crucial time in the plot to J.K. Rowling’s best selling epic. With Book 4 seeing the trio of Hogwarts’ iconic students heading into adolescence, the Yule Ball was a watershed moment for the way they related to each other.

Emma Watson recalled that importance in her own recollection of the scene. But more importantly, she further explained just why that stair-based scene was so uncomfortable in the first place:

I think for the first time Harry and Ron, particularly Ron, see Hermione as a young woman, not just this kind of sidekick they each have. I knew it was a big deal, and I was miserable. I just knew it was the, like, ‘duckling becomes the swan’ moment. I knew there was just, like, all this pressure suddenly.

Ultimately, we know that Hermione and Ron eventually fall in love and end up together. But even with that knowledge, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire’s twists and turns to that story make up some of the pivotal moments that help make it all happen. Though judging by how rude Ron was to his friend and future love of his life at the Yule Ball, you’d be forgiven if you forgot that’s how things played out.

That’s part of the fun of the Harry Potter movies, which make up a cinematic saga that was as uncertain and exciting in its time as some of the biggest filmmaking triumphs. If you’re feeling nostalgic after reading this tale, you’ll need access to Peacock to watch Goblet of Fire and its connecting installments at this time. Meanwhile, Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts is available for rental, or streaming through a Max subscription.

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