Daniel Radcliffe attends “Horns” press conference at SDCC

Daniel Radcliffe appeared at SDCC today to discuss his upcoming film Horns, set to be released on October 31 and based on the novel by Joe Hill. MuggleNet was there, and we’ve got the full report for you!

Dan portrays Ig Perrish, who awakens one morning after the brutal murder of his girlfriend Merrin to find that he has horns growing from his head. Ig soon discovers that these horns give him supernatural abilities, and since Ig is suspected of committing Merrin’s murder, he sets out to find her true killer.

MuggleNet’s own Sierra Davenport attended this afternoon’s press conference, where she had the chance to ask a question of Dan, author Joe Hill, and director Alexandre Aja:

SD: The film is a fine balance between the darkness of Ig’s new demonic persona and also his attempt to prove his innocence. From each of your three perspectives, having had a different hand in the film, how did you try to balance between those two, or how did you want to upset that balance?

JH: I think the story is less about a murder mystery, less of a whodunit, and more of a thought problem. What would it be like to know the worst in the people you love? To be faced with their worst – their worst secrets, their ugliest secrets and temptations – what would that do to you? Could you hold on to your decency? Could you still love them? And in the course of the story, Ig suffers a lot from the things he learns about the people around him. He endures a lot of punishment. But I do think decency is resilient. Even though the film and the story take us to some pretty dark places, I do think there’s a suggestion there that you can love people even when you know their worst, and maybe not in spite of, but because of. Because of their flaws. So I think that’s sort of hopeful.

AA: Yeah, you were talking about the demonic new personality, but he is in fact not changing himself. He is physically transforming into the devil, but he’s the only character that stays himself through the whole movie, and that’s very interesting because it’s the world around him that turns into hell, and not himself. And that’s really about that trip through the fire that I think is really interesting for the character.

DR: I totally agree with everything that’s been said. For me, there is always something more interesting about a part that is multifaceted and has a dark side, and it’s more true to life, even in this very heightened world that we’re in in the film. He’s a true anti­hero, and he is absolutely good, and you should root for him, and you should be with him all the way, but that’s not to say he doesn’t do some questionable things, but even he questions them. It’s not without consequence. And as he says, he learns from that so that he can be, in some sense, redeemed by the end.

JH: I just want to throw out there that one thing that you see in a lot of film today is movies and stories that really only take you to one place, that do just one thing. Horror movies that are just scary and action films that are only about buildings exploding. It’s interesting to me that in the course of the novel Ig experiences a lot emotionally – grief, rage, despair, delight, madness – and the film took him to all those places and refused to stay in one box. And the other thing I’d say that’s kind of amazing is that Ig covers this huge emotional landscape in the course of the book, and Dan went to all those places in the course of his performance and made it look easy. I always think whenever you see an artist do something difficult and make it look effortless, you’re seeing the result of someone who’s worked very, very hard – harder than the people around him. So I count us as very lucky that Dan decided he wanted to take on the part. It’s a big reason why the film is successful.

You can listen to the entire press conference below:

A number of stills and new posters for Horns were also released. You can view them in the gallery below:

And be sure to read Sierra’s full report below!

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Daniel Radcliffe attended San Diego Comic Con this week to promote his new movie Horns, due out this coming October 31st. Alongside director Alexandre Aja and Horns novelist Joe Hill, Radcliffe offered quite a few tidbits about the new movie, touching on everything from the religious and darker themes of the story to possible Harry Potter references!

Early on, Radcliffe explained what fans can expect from such a dark and gritty character as Ignatius, the lead character he portrays in the film who stands accused of murdering his girlfriend as he inexplicably sprouts horns from his head that force his friends and family to reveal their darkest secrets. Radcliffe commented:

“For me, there is always something more interesting about a part that is multifaceted and has a dark side and it’s more true to life, even in this very heightened world that we’re in in the film. He’s a true anti­hero and he is absolutely good and you should root for him and you should be with him all the way, but that’s not to say he doesn’t do some questionable things, but even he questions them. It’s not without consequence. And as he says, he learns from that so that he can be, in some sense, redeemed by the end.”

Further explaining the depths of playing Ignatius, Radcliffe also offered this insight on how he felt about the religious undertones of the character and the film as a whole:

“I’m not a religious person, but I have always been fascinated by the mythology… in all religions, particularly, Christianity’s got some fantastic stuff in there. And actually, when [Alexandre and I] first met, we had a discussion… about my theater role obsession with the devil as a character in literature and music, obviously, as well. He is traditionally this very charismatic character, so I was very excited to play him.”

Sounds like Dan is going to an entirely new place to get in to character for this film! And speaking of getting in to character, who would Radcliffe cosplay as if he could attend Comic Con as a regular fan? His answers ­ two of them! ­ might surprise you. It certainly made us laugh:

“Well, a half an hour ago, I did exactly that as Spider­Man from head to toe. I also posed in the Sharknado 2 poster, which was pretty awesome. I’m excited for that. I loved it. That’s why I’m so excited for Sharknado 2. And I say that… unironically. I really, really enjoyed it. It was fantastic!”

Finally, Radcliffe addressed some of the recent press rumors that have been circulating as to whether or not his Horns costuming and the appearance of a certain slippery creature in the film were direct references to Potter. The answer as it turns out is…definitely not!

“It’s not, that’s the thing! Those were all in the book and you can correct me if I’m wrong, but getting me to wear yellow and red was in no way a Harry Potter reference. But it definitely has been read in to like that by some people, but I promise you, I’m not referencing my other work in other things. The snakes were awesome. I had a six foot long python wrapped around me for the last half of the film, which is the best prop any actor can ever have. And there’s no acting required when you’re wearing a snake!”

Whether the Gryffindor­esque wardrobe and multitude of snakes were Potter references or not, it certainly seems like Radcliffe had a great time making this film and has so far enjoyed his very first Comic Con experience. You can listen to the entire interview between Radcliffe, Aja, and Hill here, wherein they further discuss at length the dark themes of the film, their working relationships on set, and where Radcliffe offers a preview at his upcoming film Frankenstein and what he hopes to achieve in the coming years. And be sure to catch up on the latest Horns and other Daniel Radcliffe news on Radcliffe’s MuggleNet Cast Page!


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  • Real-Merrin

    , PLEASE I have a couple if questions that I would like answered about the panel, so that I might be assured and not be stressed out about it from here till this thing gets released in Halloween.

    Was god/religion mentioned at all in the panel and/or trailer/scenes shown? (And I don’t mean talking about the devil as an archetype/figure in religion/mythology) I mean in wether religion/god as a thing was brought up and if it was, was it on negative terms?

    The reason why I’m asking and I REALLY want to know is because I read the book and it treats religion/Christianity/god really badly ( IG pisses on a religion icon on merrin’s grave, he insults a priest, he says God hates us wants us to suffer/punishes women/Merrin for “leading on/being loose with their bodies)

    I asked people who saw the movie in TIFF and they say that more problematic stuff is not on the movie. But the talked to other people who say it IS in the movie

    So I don’t know whom to believe.

    So please can you answer my question on wether or not the problematic religious stuff was mentioned in the panel and/or trailer? Please?


    • Sierra

      Hi Real-Merrin!

      Having seen both the movie and read two-thirds of the book, here is my take!

      Yes, I agree that the book treats religion with many negative lights, especially from Ig’s perspective. In the film, I felt the religious issues were more of an undertone, however. They are certainly there in some very, very obvious ways, but as author Joe Hill and director Alex Aja mentioned in the answers published above, the movie focuses mostly on human relationships and what happens when you learn harsh truths about the people around you. My personal interpretation of the film is that the horns and the abilities they give Ig are religious in nature, but are more serving as vehicles for him to help him explore and cope with the relationships in his life. I don’t feel the film necessarily condemns religion as much as the book does. The opportunity for positive and negative interpretations are there.

      I hope that helps answer your question! While the three of them do not go in depth to the religious issues at the panel, they do address it to an extent, Dan in particular. You can hear his comments on it in the audio clip above!


      • Real-Merrin

        oh Thank goodness. *cries in Relief*

        So, just to be clear- There’s no speech given by Ig about How G-D sucks and the devil is the best and our friend and G-D is crap?

        (because I remember there was a behind the scenes wayyyyyyy back in late 2012-mid 2013? that showed such a scene being filmed and Ig giving such a speech to- i think it was himself or a snake?)

        one last thing- In the trailer Ig is seen raging at a priest. (I watched the trailer without sound in case it set me off)

        what was said in that scene?

        Thank you So much for quelling my initial fears. I feel a little better

  • Real-Merrin

    Like I heard the entire panel audio and there’s something about them saying they used Bible verses?! D:
    That has concerned because I’m getting a ” use bible verses to paint god/religion in bad light” from it and I hope I’m wrong

    • Sierra

      Hi Real-Merrin,

      The mention of the Bible verses in the audio clip was that they put a Bible verse on to each character’s license plate on their car and each verse (which we won’t know until the film is released and we are then able to look the verses up) is supposed to relate on some level to that character. In my interpretation of the audio, they did not seem to mean this was meant to be a negative take on religion, but more so an extra opportunity in the film to add in some religious allegory and extra depth to the understanding of who the characters are.


  • Serious reader

    Can Radcliffe go any lower? Horns is satanic. Good luck growing as a serious actor, Dan. I’ll not support the crapola. Done.

    • Dan-fan

      Blame Fucking Joe Hill- Not Radcliffe.

      If it makes you feel any better, Radcliffe Role as Harry Potter will endure milenia while this crappy movie will only be remembered as just be a crappy over CGI B-movie

    • Dan-fan

      Radcliffe 1. is already considered a serious actor, one crappy bad choice is not going to change that 2. Seems to have a loooong career ahead of him and I doubt, when people look back on his filmography, this one insignificant movie/role won’t mean much in comparison to harry potter or Cripple of Inishmaan or Kill your Darling.

      Heck I bet Frankenstein is going to do so much better than this movie.

    • John

      Amen to that, but I was done with Dan the second he chose to do Harry Potter. That was the most unchristian satanic film I’ve ever seen. I had so much more respect for him back when he did movies like David Copperfield.

  • Matt

    The audio is nor really working anymore.