In a new interview for Playboy’s November issue, Daniel Radcliffe revealed that of all eight Harry Potter movies, there’s one that makes him cringe: The Half-Blood Prince.

“In every movie up to the sixth one, you can see a big step forward in my acting,” Radcliffe told Playboy. “And then it stopped, or went backward maybe, in the sixth film. I really enjoyed my performance in the fifth — part of it was how much I worked with people like Gary Oldman and David Thewlis. On the sixth, I remember watching it and thinking, Wow, there’s been no growth. You’re watching a mistake you made every day for 11 months — that’s the way I saw it. I had the idea that Harry was like a soldier traumatized by war, and as a result of that, he shuts down emotionally. That’s not a bad idea, but it’s not the most interesting thing to watch for two and a half hours.”

Radcliffe, who was 12 years old when the first film was released, also weighed in on what it was like growing up on the Harry Potter set, saying that although the media attention and constant spotlight could be overwhelming, he wouldn’t have traded his actual time on the set for anything.

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“I’ve seen kids on set who are bored, and I’m like, ‘What are you doing? This is the best place on Earth,’” Radcliffe said. “I loved it from the word go. I loved being on set. I loved the hours. I loved the people. I loved the crazy, weird s–t I got to do every day. Acting was the focus for me, and I wasn’t going to do anything to jeopardize being an actor.”

Read the full interview with Radcliffe at Playboy. He appears next as Igor in Victor Frankenstein, out Nov. 25.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

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  • David Yates