In the first two Harry Potter films, Hogwarts' reigning diva Hermione was all bark and no bite. But all that changes in installment No. 3, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (opening Friday). You see, the wannabe witch gets to slug school bully Draco Malfoy — and it's a rather impressive jab at that! The fisticuffs mark a major turning point for Hermione, but you don't have to tell that to actress Emma Watson.
"I loved it," says the character's 14-year-old portrayer. "I loved every single second of it. Girl power!
"I would have done [the punching scene] for a whole week," she continues. "But we got it in a couple of takes. I was like, 'I want to do it again!' It was fantastic. It is a great moment. At the premiere, everybody cheered." (TV Guide Online was present at last month's world premiere in New York and can confirm that the crowd welcomed the wallop.)
But being the poster child for young female empowerment hasn't changed this little Brit. Translation: She's in no danger of being branded Tara Reid's UK counterpart. "Between every single film, I always go back to school and see my friends," she says. "I do everything I used to: I play sports; I go to teenage parties; all my money is locked away in a bank until I'm 25. I just have good friends and family who keep my feet on the ground and keep it real."