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TODAY   |  April 04, 2014

Daniel Radcliffe: Irish accent ‘took some practice’

Actor Daniel Radcliffe joins TODAY to chat about returning to Broadway for a third time in “The Cripple of Inishmaan,” in which he does an Irish accent. He says the show will “make you laugh from your belly.”

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> with the talented actor daniel radcliffe is here and back on broadway for a third time starring in a play called "the cripple of inishman." dreaming of making it to hollywood in hopes for a better life . daniel, good morning. good to see you.

>> thank you for having me.

>> you like your starring background?

>> yeah. so fancy. my name on the door and everything. i don't actually have that in the theater. i'm going to do something about that.

>> we pull out all the stops for you. i feel like this play pulls off something difficult, which is, it's incredibly sad but also very funny.

>> absolutely. i think that's one of the -- who is the playwright, he's got a particular skill for an incredible dark comedy . and this is, as you say, one of the shows that will make you laugh really from your belly from the whole show, but it is also a very moving story. it's a powerful night of theater, hopefully. does more than one thing.

>> and if nothing else, we get to hear your irish accent .

>> absolutely. yeah. i'm very, very irish in this show.

>> was it hard to pull off?

>> it took some practice and took some -- i'm okay with accents. i'm lucky i don't have to do a scottish accent . but the irish, i actually, i took to quite well. and most of the cast is irish, as well. so you sort of soak it up. it's a really fun accent to work in. i feel like there's some lines that wouldn't be funny in an english accent that are inherently more funny in an irish.

>> this got rave reviews in london. not that you read your reviews.

>> not at the time. maybe much later sometimes. but at the time -- you're going to have to do the show the next night anyway. so if they're terrible, i can't imagine what doing the show would be like with that in your head.

>> is it different to bring it to a new york audience?

>> i think so. on the whole, new york audiences are very vocal. and we're a bit more reserved and -- whereas, new york , they're really vocal. i love that. it was amazing the reactions we would get. i'm hoping, you know, broadway takes to this show as well as it took to that one.

>> i'm thinking most actors i get to talk to started on the stage and went to movies. you were the opposite. you quite literally grew up in movies and then went to the stage. why was it important to you?

>> i think i've grown up watching a lot of theater. it was always something i was going to want to do. and i also think like i -- i learned a huge amount about myself as an actor from it. i've always done one thing. to sort of take yourself out of that comfort zone and put yourself in a different environment, you're going to have to, you know, learn and get better and grow in order to cope with it and survive. and i think it was a really kind of invaluable learning experience for me.

>> i was thinking about you growing up in the " harry potter " movies, now we've got "hunger games" or "divergent." you flourished. an incredibly interesting career after those movies. but they can be a blessing or a curse for people.

>> i think the perception around them is they can only be sort of a hindrance to people. but i think depending on how you use it and depending on what your own goals are for yourself. like if you just want to coast on the fame of the franchise for the rest of your life, you might well be able to do that or you might -- that might prove impossible. but i always wanted to do other things and i think so far, at least, potter's been an amazing spring board to that.

>> you had a fan that brushed your arm and fainted immediately.

>> that happened. and that's a story i'll be able to tell for the rest of my life.

>> it's fine.

>> well, give it a few seconds and see what happens.

>> oh, i'm overcome. daniel radcliffe , thank you so much. always good to see you. beginning april 12th , the opening is on april 20th .

>> thank you.