Emma Watson Says Even Those Close to Her Struggle to See the Real Her

In many ways, Emma Watson has become synonymous with Hermione Granger. The actor spent a decade of her life portraying the bright witch, thus people often associate her with the character. This association has only been strengthened by the similarities that Watson shares with Hermione. Both are well-read, eloquent, and highly intelligent and thus people often see them as one and the same. Even those close to Watson can struggle to separate the two.

Hermione actor Emma Watson poses on the red carpet at the BAFTAs
Emma Watson | Tolga Akmen/AFP via Getty Images

Emma Watson and Hermione Granger have become conflated

Watson felt an affinity for Hermione from the moment she was introduced to her in the books. In fact, when The Bling Ring actor was auditioning for the Harry Potter movies, she always knew that she’d be considered for Hermione. Watson admits that she felt connected to Hermione’s intelligence, bravery, and strength. She understands how important the witch is to millions of people because Hermione was (and is) very important to her.

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“I played a symbol,” Watson said of Hermione in a conversation with British Vogue. “I know this, because she’s a symbol for me.” But the Harry Potter alum wants it made known that she, herself, is not a symbol. Nor is she Hermione Granger, though many people think of her as such. “I’m not,” Watson shared of her famous character. “And I’m also not what, weirdly, my name has come to mean.”

The movie star admits that sometimes people struggle to see the real her

Continuing on, Watson shared that sometimes people see the idea of her rather than who she truly is. This is even true of those she feels close to. “Even people that are really close to me sometimes can’t let it go,” Watson admitted. “Or see just me. And then sometimes I have to go, ‘No, no – I need exactly what you need. I’m just as human as you are. I’m just as insecure as you are. I struggle just as much as you struggle.’”

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Watson has shared that it’s been very challenging navigating her own fame at times. She admits that the idea of who she is can be very at odds with whom she actually is. “There’s been moments when everything just got so big, where I almost had vertigo on my own life,” she confessed. “And it’s got so big I felt disconnected.”

What helps Watson reconnect to herself?

So how does Watson manage to ground herself when she does become overwhelmed by the disconnection? It helps her to remind herself of all the things she is outside of being a famous celebrity. The actor has developed a type of mantra that helps her feel more connected and at peace.

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“I am a sister,” Watson shares “I belong to a family… There’s a whole existence and identity that I have, actually, that’s really important and weighted and solid that has nothing to do with any of that.” Watson even admits that she’s asked her parents to validate her in these moments of imbalance. “‘Am I still your daughter?’” Watson once posed to her parents. “You know? It has felt so weird sometimes.”

Navigating Watson’s immense and intense level of fame certainly seems to have its fair share of challenges. However, the actor seems to have handled it with quite a bit of grace.

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