1 of 2
YouTube
In an appearance on “The Jonathan Ross Show” Saturday, Ralph Fiennes opened up about why he almost passed up the role of the iconic "Harry Potter" villain Lord Voldemort.

SALT LAKE CITY — To fans of the "Harry Potter" series, he’s known as “You Know Who.”

To Ralph Fiennes, however, the infamous villain may as well have been called “You Don’t Know Who” when Fiennes first heard he was offered a role in the "Harry Potter" films.

What happened: In an appearance on “The Jonathan Ross Show” Saturday, Fiennes opened up about why he almost passed up the role of the iconic "Harry Potter" villain Lord Voldemort.

"The truth is I was actually ignorant about the films and the books," Fiennes said, according to Digital Spy, who transcribed the interview.

Fiennes said he was approached by the production team who asked him to play Voldemort in the films.

"Out of ignorance I just sort of thought, this isn’t for me,” Fiennes said. “Quite stupidly I resisted, I was hesitant.”

Fiennes said what changed his mind about the role was his sister.

“I think the clincher was that my sister Martha — who has three children who were then probably about 12, 10 and 8 — she said, 'What do you mean? You’ve got to do it!' So then I rewound my thinking."

Fiennes isn’t the first person to hesitate before taking a role in the "Harry Potter" films.

1 comment on this story
  • Alfonso Cuarón, director of “Roma” and “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban,” told Vanity Fair last year that when he was asked to direct the "Harry Potter" film, he initially made fun of it to friend Guillermo del Toro.
  • “I hadn’t read the books or seen the films,” Cuarón said.
  • When del Toro found out that Cuarón was offered the film and was reluctant to take it on, he delivered an f-bomb riddled rant to the director and told him to go read all of the books and then get back to him.

Had Fiennes not taken the role, we may not have been gifted this moment in the "Harry Potter" film saga: