Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3) Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban question

Who do you think was better the old Dumbledore or the new one?
Andrea Andrea (last edited Sep 22, 2011 05:01PM ) Jul 25, 2011 08:42AM
During the making of the series Harry Potter they had to find a new person to play the part of Dumbledore. Because from the 2nd to the 3rd movie they had different Dumbledore. Because the old one died between the movies. To be honest i like the new one. He seems like more of the Dumbledore from the book. The other seemed a bit to old. But both were good! The first seemed right for a children's movie Dumbledore, but the new one seemed right for the more serious movies for Dumbledore.

Are you kidding me!? Michael Gambon destroyed Dumbledore's character for me. In my opinion, he created a Dumbledore that wasn't nearly as calm and wise as the original. It felt like he was over-acting it for me, and it bothered me immensely. He was never Dumbledore in my eyes. I understand that when making a movie actors must portray their characters as they see fit, but that doesn't stop me from disliking it. I felt Richard Harris did a much better job, even though I'm not sure he could have pulled off the moments when Dumbledore needed to be powerful.

Rita Sijelmass I don't agree Leah, you can't pin everything on the director; at the end, the actor makes the character (and that is why they are cast, if the directo ...more
Sep 21, 2015 04:07PM
Anna I agree, but to the fair to Michael Gambon, it was probably the director who decided on this change for Dumbledore - or at least allowed it, which mak ...more
Jan 02, 2016 08:27AM

Dumbledore was never gotten right. The new Dumbledore was too energetic and engimatic, the old too slow and creaky. My mind has the perfect picture of Dumbledore and it is indescribable

I definitely preferred Michael Gambon. He had more energy and also, I felt, a bit more personality. Also, as somebody mentioned earlier, I can't have ever imagined Richard Harris doing some of the things Dumbledore does in later books, particularly the cave seen in Half Blood Prince.

No one could have replaced Richard Harris as Dumbledore. I nearly cried when I heard that he had passed away because I thought he was the most perfect person for that role. Michael Gambon had huge shoes to fill, and although he filled them well enough, he never became Dumbledore to me.

Gambon didn't even try to portray Dumbledore. He said he didn't read the books so it means he doesn't have the slightest idea the characteristics of Dumbledore.

Dumbledore is soft, wise and caring. Richard Harris will always be Dumbledore for me. Aside from he portrayed him well, he has this "Twinkle in his eyes" which how Dumbledore was described. It is pretty much synonymous to Dumbledore for me.

I did not see a hint of Dumbledore in Gambon. Not one bit.

And I beg to differ, Harris can play well the Dumbledore in the latter books. Dumbledore is wise and sure of what to do but never aggressive nor impulsive.

Both of them are great, but I feel like Michael had to warm up to the part, you know? In the Goblet of Fire book, Dumbledore is like, "Harry, did you put your name in the Goblet?" Very calmly, then Michael Gambon goes, "HARRY, DUD YOU PUT YOUR NAME IN THE GOBLET?" While having him by the neck! After that, though, he was fine, if not a bit rough.

deleted member Nov 29, 2011 06:53PM   1 vote
To be honest? I didn't know they were different people. haha

I thought they both were great. I felt Richard Harris was better for the first two movies, they were more kid friendly, and I thought he fit that role perfectly. For 3-7 I thought Michael Gambon was better just because I felt like for those movies there was a shift from children to young adult and older. If that makes any sense at all, :)

The new one.

I to be honest was a little astonished to hear the death of the old Dumbeldore I nearly stopped watching Harry Potter

Richard Harris was a good dumbledore for the first books, but I think that Michael Gambon was good for the last ones. Richard Harris, I think, was too nice to play that dumbledore.

richard harris was more like what i imagined dumbledore to be like. he was a kind sweet old man. but it is a little hard to picture him doing things like the cave scene. they were both pretty good.

Hi nicholas

I actually liked both because I thought that changing actors really showed the evolution of Dumbeldore's character. Richard Harris gave us an example of the wise and kindly Dumbledore we all originally imagined. I think it is very interesting how they had to switch him out in book four which is when coincidentally we start to see his character as flawed the same way everyone else is. So I think the two Dumbledores are both important to telling the story.

richard harris all the way.

The first one was great but also the second was great aswell. Their both actors and they both played very great Dumbledore's!

Richard Harris was what I pictured Dumbledore as when I read the books and he was such a great actor he could have pulled of the more intense parts easily. Michael Gambon came off as a mean and uncaring Dumbledore which ruined the character for me in the later movies.

I always said Richard Harris was by far the better Dumbledore, Gambon portrayed him as too stern, too cold, the way he yelled Harry Potter at the beginning of Goblet Of Fire ticked me off because in the book it said with worry but in the film he just sounded pi**ed off. But! Having said all that, in the last couple of films I think he was absolutely amazing, I can't fault him in any way & I can't imagine Richard Herris pulling off the sheer strength needed for the likes of the battle in the ministry in Order & the Horcrux cave scene in Half-Blood.

I liked Richard Harris better. he was more calm than the new Dumbledore.

deleted member Aug 04, 2011 03:22PM   0 votes
I think that the new Dumbledore is better personally. Just becauese he was easier to understand... I don't know. I guess the old Dumbledore looked more what I pictured him, but he was just hard to understand when he talked.

I like both actors for differing reasons, Richard Harris was good as Dumbledore, I agree with Patricia, that the new Dumbledore had to be a different one whereby affecting us differently. Michael Gambon is quite a talented actor in his own right. Richard Harris was the nice grandfatherly type.

deleted member Jul 25, 2011 12:14PM   0 votes
(? old and new dumbledore?)

I prefer the kind, eccentric Dumbledore Harris portrays.

But alas (earwax), I can't imagine him pulling off some of the more intense scenes in the later movies, especially that wizard duel with Voldemort.

yet I haven't seen movies 6-7 yet.

I think a combination of the two would have been the perfect Dumbledore. Richard Harris had the more wise old man and the slight silliness Dumbledore did, but Michael Gambon has more of the powerful wizard and leader aura.

Somerandom (last edited Mar 31, 2015 07:17AM ) Mar 31, 2015 07:16AM   0 votes
Both were good, but I gotta go with Richard Harris. He was wise and old, but still had a sense of humor and a twinkle in his eye. As for not pulling off the cave scene, pah. If he had his health, he could have pulled that off without breaking a sweat.

I don't think you're even supposed to think he can be a really powerful wizard. He's so aloof and frail looking, then he goes all bamf on you, so don't know what hit you. Harris is my perfect Dumbledore.

I will say though, out of all his HP movies, I liked Gambon's performance in HBP the best, even if I think the tower scene wasn't perfect.

Richard Harris was by far the best. He had a kind of twinkly gravitas befitting a wizard. Although I like Gambon as an actor, I don't think he had the charisma for the role.

John (last edited Aug 02, 2011 04:47PM ) Aug 02, 2011 10:57AM   0 votes
Agreed with all Richard Harris devotees. In the books, Dumbledore was unfailingly polite, whimsical and charming. Gambon was not these things. Harris was. Plus, Gambon said he disliked Dumbledore's character, which is sad.

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Thought Richard Harris was superb. Michael Gambon is a great actor but I am stuck with the image of "The Singing Detective" whenever I see him.

Definitely Micheal Gambon. I never thought Richard Harris can pull off Dumbledore's character. Maybe he did well in the first two movies but he never could've pulled off half the acts in the rest of the movie. And he always seemed...slow. I think both actors have a bit of Dumbledore's character in the them. For example, Micheal seems to lack the sense of humour and the craziness Dumbledore is known for, he struck me as more serious. But that side of Dumbledore is definitely more needed than the humour. So what Im saying is if put together in some way Micheal and Richard would both make a perfect Dumbledore, but overall, I would deffinitely pick Micheal as he could pull off scenes that Richard could never have pulled off.

when i was younger i always liked richard harris more, but now my opinion has changed. only michael gambon could pull off the scene in the cave in HBP, i really can't picture richard harris whipping out his wand and conjuring up fire.

however, i also felt both portrayals failed to bring out certain idiosyncrasies of book-dumbledore, i.e. his unceasing politeness and good humor.

Actually I preferred Michael Gambon. Richard Harris seemed a bit too frail for Dumbledore, who, in spite of his age, always seemed to be very energetic in the books. But that's just my opinion.

I think that the first Dumbledore was better because his voice just sounded more Dumbledore-ish. Also, the second Dumbledore didn't balance Dumbledore's being mad at Harry very well because he made it actually like he hated Harry sometimes, which the old Dumbledore balanced way better. I feel like the essence of Dumbledore was expressed way better and more eloquently by the first.

I feel like Gambon looked the part but Harris had the feeling of Dumbledore spot on. A combination of the two would be perfect.

Both Dumbledore's are so nice and I don't know that the old one was just in two movies and the new one is in all of them so fo course my vote is going to be the new one because I don't know the old one well enogh as the new one. But that's just my opinion.

Unfortunately, I can't get over Michael Gambon's extremely OOC moments, especially in the Goblet of Fire. It was obvious that he had no concept of the character's personality. I read a quote in an interview where he said something like "I don't play the characters, I play different parts of myself."

Well sorry, but no one wants to see you. Please be an actor.

Ironically, if you watch off-screen footage of him, he acts more like Dumbledore in real life than he does in the movies! It's a shame because if he'd read the books or even tried to grasp the character, he might have chosen the correct part of himself to play.

Richard Harris was better, and he had that twinkly-eye thing going on. Soft-spoken, gentle, polite, but firm and forceful when needed.

Richard Harris was the perfect Dumbledore and Gambon just seemed too energetic and angry.

As if Michael Gambon was better! He didn't even read the books! Richard Harris was the perfect Dumbledore; he was calm, gentle and wise, he was just brilliant! Michael Gambon was way to aggressive, thought that could have been a result of the directing and producing of the third movie onwards. Chris Colombus directed the first two movies brilliantly and Richard Harris was fantastic.

I agree there. he was really great. The only time he disappointed me was in HBP. I thought the acting took a dive.

Laura (last edited Oct 13, 2011 03:48AM ) Oct 13, 2011 03:47AM   0 votes
I think I would have prefered Richard Harris to have carried on playing Dumbledore - and not just because he had the twinkle in his eye!

Michael Gambon's quite often came across as uncharacteristically angry, rough and out of control some times. The bit that really annoyed me was when Harry's name was pulled from the pot - and he grabbed him and shook him.. since when did Dumbledore ever react like that - and then you get the scene where he quoted some ridiculous line when they were all sleeping in the hall which seemed silly and out of place. Was this the director though or the actors decision to play it out like that?

I always got the impression that the character was a bit "all knowing" and took everything calmly and carefully - and it wasnt until the fight scenes that you saw just how powerful and quick he could be. I'm sure Richard Harris could have pulled that off.

richard harris...best dumbledore

deleted member Jul 28, 2011 12:59PM   0 votes
Michael Gambon is a fantastic actor, and plays Dumbledore well. Aside from a couple of moments when he came across as uncharacteristically angry or rough, I have no complaints about him. However, Richard Harris's Dumbledore stepped right off the page and onto the screen.

Richard Harris really is the best Dumbledore. He nailed it when he acted as him. It's just pretty sad that he passed away .. T_T. although i have to admit, i kinda love Michael Gambon's voice as Dumbledore.

Oh, I think they were both fine. Yes, Richard Harris was slightly better (so sad with HBP), but whatever.

Richard Harris seemed to have that twinkle in his eyes like in the books that Michael Gambon didn't.

everything about the first dumbledore was nicer, including his beard.

Dawn (last edited Nov 27, 2011 03:48PM ) Nov 27, 2011 03:44PM   0 votes
I liked the old Dumbledore better, but both are great. And Dumbledore is just awesome all around! :D

As of this comment, I've only seen the first four movies. I have to say that I liked Richard Harris better. When I saw him in the movies, he was EXACTLY like the Dumbledore I had pictured in my head when I read the books. He had that calmness, that sence of humor, and that twinkle in his eyes. He even looked like a wise headmaster.

Then I saw the third and fourth movies. Micheal Gambon was terrible as Dumbledore! He didn't look wise at all. He looked like a rediculously-dressed version of Gandalf with his beard tied! He wasn't kind and calm! He didn't have that twinkle in his eyes! He didn't have a sense of humor! He was completely unlike Dumbledore! There were so many scenes in the third and fourth movies where I cringed at his acting, because I could picture Richard Harris in those scenes doing so much better!

For me, Richard Harris literally WAS Dumbledore. No one will ever replace him in that role.

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