Emma Watson and Rupert Grint may have momentarily distracted the world by flashing their underwear and contracting swine flu (respectively), but at Thursday's New York premiere for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Daniel Radcliffe was on an impressive charm offensive that made it clear which of the three is still going to be making bank when he's fifty. We watched as he moved down the carpet, joking about his height, laughing at the sexual tension and drug-use allusions in the film, and gamely imagining who would win a battle between wizards and vampires ("Wizards! Vampires have to get near a wizard to kill him and we’d be able to keep our distance"). And he certainly got on our good side by telling us he wants to be back on Broadway in two or three years and is even taking tap lessons to get ready ("So far it's just a bit of shuffling... If I do a musical I want to be proper! Tap dance is so cool!"). But it was his completely adorable interaction with a terrified 11-year-old reporter from Scholastic News that won us over for good. Imagine half a dozen pushy TV reporters shoving their mikes in Radcliffe's face as he zeroes in on a little girl holding her microphone with both hands, voice shaking so much she can hardly form sentences.
Radcliffe (to other reporters): "One moment, one moment. I will come back to you. [Locks eyes with Scholastic News girl] Hello!"
Girl: "Hey. I’m Danielle from Scholastic News."
Radcliffe: "Hello, Danielle! Pleasure to meet you."
Danielle: "This is an HONOR to interview you."
Radcliffe: "Oh, thank you. You’re very sweet. Thank you."
Danielle: "I’ve seen the first and second movies and read the first and second book and they are SO good. Especially the movies. I loved them, the movies!"
Radcliffe: "Thank you very much. You’re very, very kind. They get even better than that, though, so when you get time or when your parents think you’re old enough, you must watch the rest. They’re very cool."
Danielle: "Um, and I have two questions. How are you most like Harry?"
Radcliffe: "I think in the way that we value our friends. Friendship is very important in both of our lives. I think I have Harry’s natural curiosity as well. He’s interested in a lot of things in this world, as am I."
Other reporter: "Daniel, how "
Radcliffe: "One moment, one moment."
Other reporter: "They told us to group together."
Radcliffe: "It will happen. One second, sorry." [re-focuses on Danielle]
Danielle: "How did Harry change from the first movie to the second? I mean, the sixth?"
Radcliffe: "To the sixth? Well, he grew marginally taller. The films have gotten a lot darker since that first film, so I think he has had to get a lot tougher since then. Thank you very much."
Danielle [holding breath, then nearly dropping mike]: "Oh. My. God. Oh. My. God. That was soooo cool!"
Update: Read Danielle's article!