Casting for the upcoming London play about old-ass Harry Potter characters, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, has been announced. And much to the chagrin of ~certain~ Potter fans, a black actress is playing Hermione.

Actress Noma Dumezweni, who’s currently starring in the play Linda, is taking on Emma Watson’s iconic role as Hermione in the U.K. production. While J.K. Rowling thoroughly approves the casting, we’re still doing this thing of being upset about non-white actors playing traditionally white characters. (Which leads to these great headlines: They Haven’t Cast a Black Hermione in the New ‘Harry Potter’ Play - They’ve Cast a Hermione.)

The Hollywood Reporter describes Dumezweni as Anglo-African, adding:

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Little is known of the plot beyond this brief synopsis: “While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son, Albus, must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

As usual, the news spurred a handful of fans to whine and investigate whether the casting is legit (although at this point it’s likely mostly a larger group of advocates reacting to a small number of idiots).

As for the rest of the cast, Jamie Parker (Guys and Dolls, Valkyrie) is the new Harry Potter, and actor Paul Thornley (Les Miserable) is playing Ron Weasley.

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Rowling said in a statement, “I’m so excited with the choice of casting for Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. I can’t wait to see Jamie, Noma and Paul bring the adult Harry, Hermione and Ron to life on stage next summer.” The author also tweeted that the description of Hermione in her books fits with the casting (and even if not, who the fuck cares).

The play opens on July 30, with previews starting on June 7, at London’s Palace Theater.


Contact the author at clover@jezebel.com.

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