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Tilda Swinton takes her boarding school issues out on Hogwarts

Photo: Matthias Nareyek/Getty Images

Tilda Swinton is not a fan of Harry Potter, and it’s not just because she probably knows how wrong the books are about conjuring spells. (Just ask Swinton about apparating. We bet she knows how to do it.) No, Swinton dislikes the world of Potter because it makes kids dream of leaving their parents behind and going off to boarding schools, which she deems pretty terrible. “I think they are a very cruel setting in which to grow up and I don’t feel children benefit from that type of education,” Swinton reportedly said in an interview with The Scots Magazine. “Children need their parents. That’s why I dislike films like Harry Potter, which tend to romanticize such places.” (Her comments have been picked up by Yahoo Movies UK and The Daily Mail.)

It’s worth noting that Swinton has a vested interest in turning youngsters and their folks off the notion of that type of educational experience. She’s the cofounder of the Drumduan Upper School on Scotland’s Moray Coast. Though the name makes it sound like something J.K. Rowling could have invented, it’s actually an institution that, per The Guardian, believes in “no exams, no tests, no hierarchies, no sitting at desks whenever possible” and, presumably, no points for Gryffindor. Swinton herself attended the same schmancy school Princess Diana did, then known as the West Heath Girls’ School.

We’d just like to encourage Swinton to take a second look at Hogwarts. Trust us, it only starts out all twinkly and wondrous; it becomes a hellhole as the series goes on.


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