What Harry Potter fan doesn’t wish they had a family just like the Weasleys? They’re big, they’re boisterous, they’re super ginger, and they take Harry Potter in like he’s one of their own.

And while Harry adores the Weasleys from the outset, in the end he officially joins the lovable brood for good after the bright and beautiful Ginny Weasley steals the young wizard’s heart. Played by English actress Bonnie Wright in the Harry Potter films, Ginny grows from a vulnerable young lass into a fierce and formidable witch, becoming a valuable asset for the powers of good. Take that, Voldemort!

Wright’s no longer the young, impish ginger that she was when she first appeared in Harry Potter all those years ago; she’s now a multi-faceted young woman with an impressive résumé. So what has she been up to now that she’s graduated from Hogwarts? Has she been involved in anything as landmark as Harry Potter? And what are her plans for the future? Here’s everything we know about the girl who played Ginny Weasley in Harry Potter.

She was a ‘very curious’ kid

Bonnie Wright

Wright’s real-life upbringing wasn’t exactly parallel to Ginny Weasley’s. For one, she grew up in urban London, whereas the Weasley clan lived in the Burrow. And while Ginny Weasley has a bunch of brothers, Wright only has one in real life. But despite the difference of their families’ sizes, Wright can still relate to the Weasley brood. “I think I came from a family much like them; not massively materialistic, just a comfortable, warm home,” she shared in Interview magazine. Plus, she noted that her family has no shortage of humor, which is another big similarity between the two clans.

As far as Wright’s childhood interests go, she felt pulled toward storytelling in its many forms right out of the gate — long before she became an actress. “[The] desire to tell a story was something I loved as a kid. Recounting things, or putting on little performances,” she mused in an interview with The S Life Mag. “I was a very curious child.” So, it only makes sense that Wright found her home in the entertainment industry, where she’s able to put that creativity to work every day.

Her real-life Ron told her to audition

Bonnie Wright, as a child with her brother

How did Wright land her dream role, which every lady ginger in London would have died for? Turns out it’s all thanks to her older brother — her real-life Ron — who was the first person to encourage her to audition. “He’d already become a fan of the books and obviously he saw me as his younger sister, his Ginny,” she recalled at a panel at Dallas Fan Days in 2015. “And we heard they were doing these auditions and they were going to make these books into films. He was like, ‘Oh, you should go and audition for the role of Ginny.'” Kudos to him for the push!

After that, her destiny was set: 9-year-old Wright and her family managed to secure her an audition, even though they were not involved at all with the film industry. And while the role of Ginny Weasley was small in the first film, she got it, ran with it, and made it her own. And we all know what happened next!

Spending a decade on set

Bonnie Wright with her Harry Potter co-star

By the time that the last Harry Potter film wrapped and the credits rolled, Wright was ten years older than when she started. Can you imagine spending a full decade on set? That’s a long time.

Those years were utterly formative for Wright, who had matured immensely while filming. “I’m so respectful and understand those 10 years on Harry Potter were the foundation of my life,” she mused in an interview with The Telegraph. “It was seminal to my growing up.” We can only imagine!

And although she literally came of age in front of the whole world (which was likely difficult for her), learning about filmmaking on the Harry Potter sets gave Wright a game-changing education. “Looking back, what I loved about those films is that everyone, from the cinematographer to the set designer, were at the top of their field,” she shared in an interview with The Guardian. “To watch people for whom the craft of film-making was so important — that stayed with me.” Sounds pretty darn magical.

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