Emma Charlotte Duerre Watson (born 15 April 1990) is an English actress who rose to fame playing the role of Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter film series.
Emma Watson was born in Paris, France to Jacqueline Luesby and Chris Watson, English lawyers who lived in France at the time (Watson's grandmother is French). Watson has a younger brother named Alex. She lived in Paris until the age of five, then moved with her mother and brother to Oxford, England.
Watson attended The Dragon School, a private preparatory school, until June 2003, when she moved to Headington School, a private all-girls school in Oxford. In June 2006, Watson took GCSE examinations in 10 subjects, achieving eight A* and two A grades. She is studying for her Advanced Subsidiary (AS) levels in English Literature, Geography and Art History.
Watson is an avid sports player and her musical interests (as of Spring 2005) include singing, hip hop, blues, and classic rock, including Eminem, Eric Clapton, U2, Nelly Furtado, Joss Stone, Amy Winehouse, and Norah Jones. She claims to be a big fan of the Shrek films, toast, and the girl group Destiny's Child.
Watson has said that her celebrity status is partly responsible for her not having a boyfriend, stating: "Guys are either intimidated by me, or they have defences up, or they like to take the piss out of me." Watson was ranked number 98 in the FHM 100 Sexiest Women in the World 2007 list.
Prior to her role in the Harry Potter films, Watson's acting experience was limited, consisting only of minor roles in school plays, including Arthur: The Young Years and The Happy Prince. Other school activities included the Daisy Pratt Poetry Competition, in which, at the age of seven, she won first place for her year.
Watson was eleven years old when Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone—titled Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone in the United States—was released. She has since appeared in all subsequent Potter films: Chamber of Secrets (2002), Prisoner of Azkaban (2004), Goblet of Fire (2005), and Order of the Phoenix (2007). Despite reports alleging that Watson refused to sign a contract to appear in the final two Potter installments, her commitment to the final two films was confirmed in late March 2007 by Warner Brothers. At the time she said "I could never let Hermione go--she is my hero! I love her too much and love what playing her has meant to me. I am excited and honoured to be finishing what I started and playing her in all seven of the films." (Daniel Radcliffe's involvement in the last two films had been confirmed earlier that month.)
At age fifteen, Watson became the youngest person to appear on the cover of Teen Vogue magazine until the appearance of American actress Willa Holland. She also served on a panel, along with Pierce Brosnan, Kenneth Branagh and Samantha Morton, to select the 2004 teen-aged filmmakers' "First Light" for the Film Award ceremony in Leicester Square in London. She also played Hermione in The Queen's Handbag, a special mini-episode of Harry Potter in celebration of Queen Elizabeth II's 80th birthday.
On 9 July 2007, Watson and fellow Harry Potter castmates Daniel Radcliffe and Rupert Grint left imprints of their hands, feet and wands in front of Grauman's Chinese Theater in Hollywood.
On 19 July 2007, Watson announced her involvement in her first non-Harry Potter project, The Tale of Despereaux, an animated film to be released in 2008. She will voice the character of Princess Pea.