Harry Potter is portrayed by Daniel Radcliffe in four films based on the book series, the most recent of which is Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, which was released in the US on November 18th, 2005. Further installments in the movie series are expected; however, Radcliffe's appearance in these has not yet been confirmed.
Harry Potter is famous in the wizarding world for his encounter with the evil Lord Voldemort, the primary villain in the series, when he was just a year old, an encounter which lost Voldemort, one of the most powerful sorcerers of all time, his body and powers.
Harry's mother, Lily, was killed while attempting to protect Harry from Voldemort, and her dying act placed Harry under a spell of protection. Voldemort attempted to kill Harry with the Avada Kedavra curse, which he had used to kill Harry's parents, but the spell rebounded due to his mother's protection, striking Voldemort instead. Voldemort, who had spent several years using powerful dark magic in an ongoing attempt to achieve immortality, was able to survive the spell, but as a near-powerless disembodied spirit, only a pale shadow of his former self. Beaten and powerless, Voldemort went into hiding, and Harry became a celebrity in the wizarding world as "The Boy Who Lived", especially famous for the lightning-shaped scar Voldemort's curse left on his forehead.
This protection helped Harry again, ten years later in Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, when Lord Voldemort returned searching for the Philosopher's Stone. Using Hogwarts instructor Professor Quirrell as a vessel, Voldemort returned to Hogwarts to find the stone. Voldemort attempted to kill Harry again, but Lily Potter's protection lingered in his veins, and Voldemort was unable to touch Harry. He was forced to flee again, leaving Quirrell to die.
Harry was raised by Petunia and Vernon Dursley, who neglected him in favour of their own son Dudley and in their attempt to remove all traces of his magical self to make him "normal", kept him fully isolated from the wizarding world. Harry did not even know that he was a wizard until his eleventh birthday, when Rubeus Hagrid, Hogwarts gamekeeper and friend of Dumbledore, explained it to him and also told him about the fame he had in the magical world.
Surprisingly perhaps, Harry has not let his fame go to his head, and he has remained humble, despite the fact that people like Gilderoy Lockhart and Colin Creevey keep reminding him how famous he is. In fact, Harry is annoyed by his fame, as it has caused many people to either fawn all over him or hate him for it.
Harry's greatest desire is to be normal, and for all whom he cares about to be safe and happy. His heroic aspects are bravery, curiosity, and compassion. Harry often puts himself at risk for other people, and often tries to convince others not to put themselves in danger. For example, in the first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone, he does not want Ron and Hermione to attempt to locate the Philosopher's Stone with him. This occurs in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix when Ginny, Neville, and Luna wish to join Harry, Ron, and Hermione on a rescue mission.
However, Harry is depicted with many flaws. He can be angered easily when his parents or others whom he cares about are offended, or when people do not believe him. Like Ron, he is not very diligent with his studies. In Order of the Phoenix, Harry appears more disturbed and troubled, and is extremely temperamental, as he has to endure the entire wizarding world believing him to be an attention-seeking liar, along with the normal difficulties in being a teenager. Sometimes, Harry even gets angry at Ron and Hermione, especially when they argue with each other.
Harry has a very strong loyalty streak and expects loyalty in return. This streak has often prevented Harry from looking at things objectively and will occasionally prevent him from heeding constructive criticism from friends such as Hermione.
Harry tends to feel very passionately about who is trustworthy and who is not. For example, Harry is reluctant to trust Severus Snape, the Potions Master, despite Hogwarts Headmaster Albus Dumbledore's faith in Snape. Since Harry has been raised by the Dursleys, and has experienced nightmarish events, including the deaths of classmate Cedric Diggory in Goblet of Fire and father-figure Sirius Black in Order of the Phoenix, Harry seems to feel rather misunderstood. Harry's feelings of isolation increase, when, at the end of Order of the Phoenix, he learns that he alone must battle Voldemort to the death.
Ginny Weasley was the first person to take a romantic interest in Harry, having a crush on him in Chamber of Secrets, though she was too tongue-tied to even speak to him. In Goblet of Fire, Harry develops a crush on Cho Chang, and in his fifth year, he kisses her under the mistletoe. She and Harry split up at the end of the year, due to Harry's naïveté, Cho's jealousy, and Marietta Edgecombe's betrayal of Dumbledore's Army.
Harry greatly resembles his father, but he is frequently told that he has his mother's eyes. Some have speculated that Harry having eyes similar to his mother's will play a significant role in the last book.
In Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Harry and Ginny Weasley kissed after the Gryffindor quidditch team won the Quidditch Cup, and they began seeing each other, until after Albus Dumbledore's death near the end of the school year, when Harry was forced to break up from Ginny so Lord Voldemort couldn't use her as his girlfriend to get to him, as he had in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.
Family tree of Harry Potter