Harry Melling is a British actor who is best known for his debut role of Dudley Dursley in the Harry Potter film series (2001-2011). Thereafter, he appeared in various films like The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018), The Old Guard (2020), and The Devil All the Time (2020). In 2020, he came into the limelight with Netflix’s The Queen’s Gambit in which he played the role of Harry Beltik. As an actor, Melling also has various popular plays under his belt including five times Tony Award-nominated play Hand to God (2016), and his playwright debut, Peddling (2014).
Harry Melling was born as Harry Edward Melling IMDb on Monday, December 13, 1989 (age 31 years; as of 2020), in London, England. He did his schooling at Hendon School, and Mill Hill School, London. At the age of ten, he was cast in the Harry Potter film series as Dudley Dursley. Later, during his teenage years, he began his journey as a theater artist by joining the National Youth Theater, London. Thereafter, he enrolled himself in an acting course at The London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA). Amazon Prime. In 2009, he left his course early to play the role of ‘Swiss Cheese’ in the play ‘Mother Courage and her Children.’
Height (approx.): 5′ 11″
Hair Color: Dark Ash Blonde
Eye Color: Lavender Grey
Family & Ethnicity
Parents & Siblings
Harry Melling’s father, Brian Melling, is a graphic designer, and his mother, Joanna Troughton, is an author of children’s books. His brother, Jack Melling, is a professional communicator.
Harry Melling’s maternal grandfather, Patrick Troughton, was a British actor who is popular for playing the role of the second incarnation of the Doctor in the long-running British science-fiction television series Doctor Who (1963). Harry Melling is the nephew of actors David Troughton and Michael Troughton, and he is the first cousin of cricketer Jim Troughton, and actor Sam Troughton.
Relationships, Wife & Children
Not much is known about his relationships.
As a Theater Artist
In 2009, Harry Melling played the role of Swiss Cheese in the play ‘Mother Courage and her Children’ at the Royal National Theater. In 2011, he appeared in the play The School for Scandal at Barbican Centre, a performing arts theater in London. Melling played the role of Sir Benjamin Backbite, a young gentleman who spends his time spreading gossips.
On April 10, 2014, Melling gained immense recognition for his playwriting debut, ‘Peddling,’ in which he portrayed the role of a young pedlar boy. The play was inspired by one of Melling’s childhood instances when a young boy knocked at the door of his family’s house in North London, trying to sell them household goods. The play premiered at Hightide Festival in New York, and later, in 2015, it was revived at the Arcola Theater, London.
His other theatrical works include The Angry Brigade (2014), Hand to God (2016), King Lear (2016), etc.
In 2010, Harry Melling made his television debut with the show Merlin in which he played the role of Gilli, a young sorcerer.
Later, he appeared in various television series like Garrow’s Law (2009-2011), The Musketeers (2014-2016), The War of the Worlds (2019), etc. In 2019, he played the role of Sysselman, a fussy man who is in charge of the port town of Trollesund, in the show ‘His Dark Materials.’
Since his debut in the film ‘Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone’ (2001), he appeared in the recurring role of Harry Potter’s spoiled cousin Dudley Dursley in five Harry Potter films.
Thereafter, he appeared in the films The Lost City of Z (2016) and The Current War (2017). In 2018, he came into the spotlight for playing the role of Harrison, a limbless public speaker in the film ‘The Ballad of Buster Scruggs.’
In 2020, he played the antagonist Steven Merrick, a pharmaceutical executive who wants to find the secret to immortal life, in the film ‘The Old Guard.’
Later, in the same year, Melling became popular for playing the role of Roy Laferty in the psychological thriller film ‘The Devil All the Time.’ Melling is renowned for the iconic breakout scene when the fanatical preacher Roy Laferty pours live spiders onto his face as part of his sermon.
In 2020, he made his digital debut with Netflix’s The Queen’s Gambit in which he played the role of Harry Beltik, one of the best chess players in Kentucky who is left in awe of Beth Harmon’s (protagonist played by Anya Taylor-Joy) talent.
- Like Harry Melling, Stanislav Yanevski, who played the character of Viktor Krum in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005), is also an alumnus of Mill Hill School, London. Harry Melling’s maternal grandfather, Patrick Troughton, was also a student at Mill Hill School during the 1930s.
- In 2019, Melling was nominated for International Golden Carp Film Award in the category of Best Ensemble Performance for the film The Ballad of Buster Scruggs (2018).
- To avoid being recast, Melling had to wear a fat suit to shoot for the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1 (2010) as he had lost a considerable amount of weight over the course of the Harry Potter films.
- In 2016, Harry Melling spent a week in puppetry school to star in Broadway’s hit theater play Hand to God. In the play, Melling played the role of Jason, a Bible belt teenager who is controlled by Tyrone, a foul-mouthed puppet. In an interview, while talking about his experience at the puppetry school, he said,
The real skill is to listen to what the puppet is saying to you as if it is completely detached from you. It was especially important for the character of Jason as he has to believe he’s being controlled by Tyrone.”