Emma Watson has never enjoyed stardom, said Ariel Leve in The Sunday Times (U.K.). At age 9, she was cast as Hermione Granger in the first Harry Potter movie, and soon felt like her identity was under attack. “I started off at the beginning of the series adamantly protecting my sense of self,” she says. “I sat in interviews going, ‘No, I’m not anything like [Hermione], I’m different because of this and this and this’—at 9.” She sighs. “People would say, ‘You are really Hermione, aren’t you?’ and it went on and on till it got to a point where I said, Fine, it’s easier for me to say we’re one person because that keeps everyone happy.” Now 22, Watson still doesn’t like media attention, and finds it bizarre that something as minor as her recent decision to cut her hair short can set off a global furor. “I could not have anticipated the level of scrutiny that haircut got. ‘Why did she do it? What was the motivation behind it?’ That is news?” She laughs at how people think she’s shrewder than she is. “People said that was a really smart career move. It’s like, I just really liked it. It was just a haircut.”
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