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Expat Harry Potter star Miriam Margolyes tells Australians to ‘get f**ked’

British expat Miriam Margolyes was warned by her partner about criticising Australia too harshly in her new ABC documentary – but she didn’t take the advice.

The 79-year-old Harry Potter star, who became a naturalised citizen seven years ago, travelled from coast to coast for her series Almost Australian, but the process left her feeling disenchanted with her adopted home country.

Margolyes made headlines on Monday for saying she was horrified by the ‘brutality’ and ‘greed’ of modern Australia – and has since declared in an interview with The New Daily that she won’t be making any apologies for her remarks.

Facing the wrath: British expat Miriam Margolyes was warned by her partner about criticising Australia too harshly in her new ABC documentary – but she didn’t take the advice

She said her longtime partner, Heather Sutherland, a retired Australian professor of Indonesian studies, had warned her that ‘Australians do not like criticism’.

‘And they don’t, so I knew that I was doing something quite risky by, you know, having an opinion,’ Margolyes said. ‘Because I think Australians are a bit tired of Brits mouthing off about Australia, and I don’t blame them.’

But despite this, she decided to throw caution to the wind and say what she really thought about Australia – regardless of the consequences.

‘I hope people will not be too annoyed about the things I have to say, but in the end, to be honest, f**k ’em if they are. That’s tough. I’m telling it like I see it,’ she said. 

'F**k 'em': Margolyes made headlines on Monday for saying she was horrified by the 'brutality' and 'greed' of modern Australia - and has since declared in an interview with The New Daily that she won't be making any apologies for her remarks

‘F**k ’em’: Margolyes made headlines on Monday for saying she was horrified by the ‘brutality’ and ‘greed’ of modern Australia – and has since declared in an interview with The New Daily that she won’t be making any apologies for her remarks

It comes after Margolyes, who is best known for playing Professor Sprout in the Harry Potter film series, sparked outraged by saying Australia was ‘harsher’ than she had first thought when she arrived in the 1980s.

‘We think we know what [Australia is] like, but we don’t. It’s quite complicated. It’s layered. Lots of things happen. I do think I was right that it’s harsher than it was. Maybe that’s true in the world,’ she told TV Tonight. 

‘There’s a harshness about it, which I didn’t expect.’  

Adopted Aussie: The BAFTA-winning actress became a naturalised citizen in January 2013 after years of dividing her time between London and Australia

Adopted Aussie: The BAFTA-winning actress became a naturalised citizen in January 2013 after years of dividing her time between London and Australia

She said the most confronting part of the documentary was having to visit Surfers Paradise, a highly developed stretch of coastline on Queensland’s Gold Coast popular with holidaymakers.

‘There is a brutality there and a greed in Australia, which I don’t like,’ she said.

‘You know, the developers. Those horrible structures along the coast, that people should be ashamed of living in. Surfers Paradise, it’s disgusting. I think that actually shocked me because I don’t go there. It’s not my world and I don’t want to go there.’

'Those horrible structures along the coast': She said the most confronting part of filming ABC documentary series Almost Australian was having to visit Surfers Paradise, a highly developed stretch of coastline on Queensland's Gold Coast popular with holidaymakers (pictured)

‘Those horrible structures along the coast’: She said the most confronting part of filming ABC documentary series Almost Australian was having to visit Surfers Paradise, a highly developed stretch of coastline on Queensland’s Gold Coast popular with holidaymakers (pictured)

The BAFTA-winning actress, who lives in the Southern Highlands of New South Wales, became a citizen in January 2013 after years of dividing her time between London and Australia.

‘I don’t like class distinction and there is far too much of that in England,’ she said after her citizenship ceremony.

‘There’s an energy here – an optimism, a vitality. I think England doesn’t have that anymore. There’s an irony and not accepting bulls**t [in Australia] and I love that, that straight-talking stuff.’

Famous role: Margolyes, who is best known for playing Professor Sprout in the Harry Potter film series, lives in the NSW Southern Highlands with her partner. Pictured with (L-R) Rupert Grint, Emma Watson and Daniel Radcliffe in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Famous role: Margolyes, who is best known for playing Professor Sprout in the Harry Potter film series, lives in the NSW Southern Highlands with her partner. Pictured with (L-R) Rupert Grint, Emma Watson and Daniel Radcliffe in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

It comes after Margolyes sparked outrage in Britain last month when she said on Channel 4 show The Last Leg that she had wanted Prime Minister Boris Johnson to die from coronavirus.

Presenter Adam Hills had asked her how she felt the UK government had handled the pandemic so far.

Speaking from her home via video link, she replied: ‘Appallingly, of course, appallingly. It’s a disgrace, it’s a scandal. I had difficulty not wanting Boris Johnson to die. I wanted him to die.

‘Then I thought that will reflect badly on me… so then I wanted him to get better.’ 

Shocking: It comes after Margolyes sparked outrage in Britain last month when she said on The Last Leg that she had wanted Prime Minister Boris Johnson to die from coronavirus

Shocking: It comes after Margolyes sparked outrage in Britain last month when she said on The Last Leg that she had wanted Prime Minister Boris Johnson to die from coronavirus

Johnson had been hospitalised with COVID-19 on April 5 and was admitted to intensive care the following day. He has since made a full recovery.

Britain’s television watchdog, Ofcom, has received more than 400 complaints since the outburst, and politicians have urged Channel 4 to apologise for allowing the remark to air unchallenged.

Good Morning Britain anchor Piers Morgan blasted Margolyes last week, describing her comments as shameful.

Ordeal: Johnson (pictured) had been hospitalised with COVID-19 on April 5 and was admitted to intensive care the following day. He has since made a full recovery

Ordeal: Johnson (pictured) had been hospitalised with COVID-19 on April 5 and was admitted to intensive care the following day. He has since made a full recovery 

‘Shame on you, Miriam Margolyes. Shame on you,’ Morgan said. 

‘If someone said on this show, “I wished he’d died”, I’d have ripped him, but no one said anything [on The Last Leg]. 

‘It’s not funny what Boris went through personally on that ICU.’

Almost Australian airs from Tuesday at 8.30pm on ABC and iview 

'Shame on you, Miriam Margolyes': Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan (pictured) blasted Margolyes last week, describing her comments as shameful

‘Shame on you, Miriam Margolyes’: Good Morning Britain host Piers Morgan (pictured) blasted Margolyes last week, describing her comments as shameful 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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