Back in 2009, the set of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows was hit by a terrible accident. During rehearsals, Daniel Radcliffe’s long-time Harry Potter stunt double, David Holmes, sustained a spinal injury that left him paralysed.
Nearly 15 years on, that story is getting a unique telling in a documentary that will reunite actor and stuntman.
The HBO doc, The Boy Who Lived, will bring Radcliffe and Holmes together for an emotional reunion, showcasing the latter’s stunt work and interviewing both about life before and since the accident.
It’s a coming-of-age tale of sorts, too, telling the story of how Holmes went from a gifted young gymnastic to working as Radcliffe’s stunt double from The Philosopher’s Stone onwards.
The pair remain firm friends, with Radcliffe helping Holmes launch his podcast Cunning Stunts back in 2020. The Boy Who Lived will show how the actor and Holmes’s fellow stunt people rallied around him in the wake of his accident.
‘Being a stuntman was my calling in life, and doubling Harry was the best job in the world,’ Holmes wrote on Instagram.
‘This film tells the story of not just my achievements in front of camera, but also the challenges I face every day, and my overall attitude to life after suffering a broken neck,’ said the stuntman of a documentary four years in the making.
‘In the turbulent world we find ourselves living in right now, I would like to quote Harry: “We are only as strong as we are united, as weak as we are divided.”’
Expect lots of interviews, plenty of nostalgia and a few tears when it hits the small screen in November.
David Holmes: The Boy Who Lived is on HBO Max in the US on Nov 15, and Sky Documentaries in the UK from Nov 18.
Read our Harry Potter and the Cursed Child review.
From the archives: Daniel Radcliffe on Kill Your Darlings.