Isn’t that always the way in art… that when we look back at our older work (whether it’s a painting or sketch, a piece of writing, or an acting performance) we see what we could have done better if only we’d known then what we know now? Such is the case for Harry Potter actor, Matthew Lewis, who played Neville Longbottom in all eight films. He cringes when he watches his childhood role, but his reasoning is quite interesting.
In an interview with Insider, Lewis reported that he finds watching himself act as Longbottom to be “painful” because he identifies with the awkward character a little too closely for comfort.
Apparently, playing characters that are much like himself makes Lewis uncomfortable. “I find it quite difficult when too much of me starts to come through in a character,” he said. “At times it’s painful how much of me there is in Neville. I’m like ‘that’s not Neville; that’s you.'”
Lewis now stars as the lead love interest in the PBS series and period drama, All Creatures Great and Small, based off of James Herriot’s novel of the same name.