Harry Potter star Robbie Coltrane has defended author JK Rowling’s right to free speech after she was again accused of transphobia.
Coltrane, who played gamekeeper Hagrid in the film franchise, criticised the author’s detractors for their treatment of her in an interview with Radio Times.
Rowling has suffered abuse and threats on social media for raising concerns about transgender issues.
The actor said: “I don’t think what she said was offensive really”.
He added: “I don’t know why but there’s a whole Twitter generation of people who hang around waiting to be offended.”
an insidious, authoritarian and misogynistic trend
Coltrane was not alone in defending the Harry Potter author. A group of writers, actors, and artists – including playwright Sir Tom Stoppard, Booker prize-winner Ian McEwan and actor Griff Rhys Jones – have also shown their support for the embattled Rowling.
‘Onslaught of abuse’
In a letter to The Times, the 58 signatories complained that “JK Rowling has been subjected to an onslaught of abuse that highlights an insidious, authoritarian and misogynistic trend in social media.”
It concluded: “We wish JK Rowling well and stand in solidarity with her.”
It was also signed by Stonewall co-founder Simon Fanshawe and children’s authors Gillian Philip and Rachel Rooney, who have both been targeted by activists for speaking out on transgenderism.