Skip to main content

The Harry Potter series is one of the most popular fantasy worlds of all time. An entire generation of children grew up with the story of the boy wizard and his friends, immersing themselves in the books, and later, the films.

Characters such as Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger helped to provide solace to many fans and to help insecure children know that they weren’t alone. Other featured characters, such as the villainous Draco Malfoy, might not have served as inspirations to young fans, but they definitely served to make the Harry Potter universe a more believable place.

Still, there was a time when Tom Felton, the actor behind Malfoy, was much more interested in playing the hero than the villain.

How did Tom Felton get into acting?

Tom Felton
Tom Felton | Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

Felton was born in England in 1987. He developed his performing skills early, joining four school choirs and impressing many with his angelic voice.

As a child, Felton started working as an actor, appearing in various television commercials. In the late nineties, Felton got his first big break when he appeared in The Borrowers. He also started a promising career as a voice actor, lending his voice to the animated series Bugs

Felton was able to travel the world as a young actor. In 1999, he traveled to Malaysia for his role in the film Anna and the King.

By the time he was a teenager, Felton had established quite a name for himself as a young talent capable of playing almost any role. Still, it wasn’t until the early 2000s when Felton would land the role that would earn him a place in film history.

The role of Draco Malfoy was not Tom Felton’s first pick

In 2001, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was released to theaters, and pop culture would never be the same again. The movie, based on the book of the same name, featured a cast of accomplished older stars as well as a roster of up and coming child actors.

Tom Felton was a member of the cast, playing the villainous, spoiled wizard-in-training, Draco Malfoy. While Felton was perfectly able to embody the nasty young man, he later revealed that the role of Malfoy was far from his first choice.

In fact, Felton auditioned for the role of Harry Potter as well as Ron Weasley before showrunners decided that he would be the ideal fit for the character of Draco Malfoy. The rest was history, and Felton went on to portray Malfoy in the entire Harry Potter series. Even though the character of Malfoy was reprehensible, fans loved Felton, and he became a firm favorite on the fan circuit. 

Is Tom Felton still acting?


‘Harry Potter’ Character Salazar Slytherin Gets a Major Shoutout From Scientists

In the years since the Harry Potter series wound to a close, Felton has continued to stay busy, acting in a wide variety of film projects. He has appeared in movies such as Rise of the Planet of the Apes, Message from the King, Feed, Stratton, and Against the Sun. Felton has also enjoyed a robust career in television, and even reprised the character of Draco Malfoy in several Harry Potter video games.

In addition to his work as an actor, Felton has continued to pursue his passion for singing, writing and performing songs and even releasing several EPs and singles. For fans, even though Draco Malfoy is definitely a bad guy, Felton is firmly in the good-guy camp. Fortunately, he was cast in the perfect role, all those years ago.