- “Albus Dumbledore was never proud or vain; he could find something to value in anyone, however apparently insignificant or wretched, and I believe that his early losses endowed him with great humanity and sympathy. I shall miss his friendship more than I can say, but my loss is as nothing compared to the wizarding world's. That he was the most inspiring and the best loved of all Hogwarts headmasters cannot be in question.”
- ―Dumbledore's obituary
Professor Albus Percival Wulfric Brian Dumbledore, O.M. (First Class), Grand Sorc., D. Wiz., X.J.(sorc.), S. of Mag.Q. (c. Summer, 1881 – 30 June, 1997) was the Transfiguration Professor, and later Headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Dumbledore is one of the major characters in the Harry Potter series. He was portrayed by the late Richard Harris until Michael Gambon took over after his death.
Albus Dumbledore is considered to be the most powerful wizard of all time, Dumbledore is benevolent and wise, a good wizard in the style of Merlin. He almost constantly gave off an aura of serenity and composure, rarely displaying intense emotions of anger or fear. He was known for typically speaking in a calm, collected voice, being reasonable and kind, but firm. Yet, despite his benign nature, it is said that Dumbledore was the only wizard Lord Voldemort ever truly feared.
Dumbledore can sometimes raise his voice when he is asking for silence whenever the students are disagreeing or panicking respectively, but he remains calm in situations when the troll is set loose in the castle. Despite being a old wizard, Dumbledore uses his skills to battle Voldemort or any of his Death Eaters.
Albus Dumbledore is a slender and tall elderly wizard with fair skin, long silvery white hair and beard and sometimes wears silver half moon spectacles. He wears dark crimson red robes complete with a pointy wizard's cap.
Starting with the Prisoner of Azkaban onward, Dumbledore now has a shorter hair and beard with silver beads tied onto it. He now wears light blue robes and a light blue fez cap.
Dumbledore first appears in Privet Drive where he catches the lights from the lampposts. Dumbledore soon meets Professor McGonagall and Dumbledore explains the situation to McGonagall about Harry's parents killed by Voldemort, before Rubeus Hagrid shortly arrives on his flying motorcycle with the infant Harry Potter. They leave the baby on the doorstep of 4 Privet Drive, home of Harry's only relatives, The Dursleys. Dumbledore places the letter on the bundle, wishing Harry good luck.
Dumbledore is only mentioned for several minutes of the beginning. He did make a cameo in a Famous Witches and Wizards card, until he disappears when Harry took a second look.
Dumbledore fully appears when the first years enter the Great Hall. Dumbledore tells the students that the Forest is strictly forbidden and the third floor corridor is out of bounds to everyone who doesn't want to die a painful death. During the Sorting Ceremony, Dumbledore watches as the Sorting Hat sorts Harry Potter in Gryffindor. After he is sorted, Dumbledore slightly waves his goblet at Harry, as a sign of respect and good luck. After the Sorting Ceremony, Dumbledore begins the feast by magic.
At the Halloween feast, Professor Quirrell barges in the Great Hall, screaming that the Troll is in the dungeons. This sends everyone in panic until Dumbledore raises his voice for silence, he calmly advises that everyone must not panic, he asks the prefects to lead everyone back to their dormitories, and the teachers to follow him to the Dungeons. Although, when he did get to the Dungeons, The Troll had already gotten into the castle, so it is unknown that he asked for the teachers to look for the troll, or he had heard that Harry and Ron saved Hermione from the troll.
Dumbledore watches the Quidditch Match with Gryffindor vs Slytherin. He is unaware that Quirrell had used his jinx on Harry's broom, Dumbledore watches in horror as it happens, until Hermione unintentionally stops Quirrell by setting Snape's robe on fire, thus returning Harry's broom to its normal flying standard. When Harry caught the snitch, Dumbledore applauds.
Later on in the film, when Harry discovers the Mirror or Erised, Dumbledore finds him and explains all about the mirror, and the reasons how Harry never got to know his family. Dumbledore also explains that the mirror gives us neither knowledge nor truth, revealing that men had gone mad with the mirror and advises Harry against looking for it, reminding him "It does not dwell on dreams Harry, and forget to live".
Dumbledore did move the Mirror to the Forbidden Third Floor Corridor, hides the Philosopher's Stone inside the mirror with his magic and left for a meeting with the Ministry of Magic. When Dumbledore found out that Harry and his friends Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger had entered the corridor to stop Snape from stealing the Philosopher's Stone, and how Quirrell died from Harry's touch when the villain tried to steal the stone from him, Dumbledore returns in time to rescue Harry and nurse him back to his health in the Hospital Wing. Dumbledore explains to Harry that the stone had been destroyed after having an agreement with Nicholas Flammel, and the reason why Quirrell couldn't bear to touch him and later died when he did touch him, is because Harry's Mother planted a love-based sacrifice in Harry's skin from her death.
At the House Cup Ceremony just as Slytherin is about to win the cup, Dumbledore adds the house points to Gryffindor for Harry, Ron and Hermione's heroic events down in the third-floor corridor, and also adds more house points to Gryffindor for Neville Longbottom's heroic effort of standing up to his friends. Knowing the calculations are correct, Dumbledore changes the banners from Slytherin to Gryffindor with his magic, before announcing Gryffindor has won the house cup.
During the start of the school year, Dumbledore is presumably informed about the Whomping Willow incident of Harry and Ron, and he leaves with McGonagall to stop Snape from criticizing the boys. Snape request to Dumbledore that the boys should be expelled, but Dumbledore refuses, handing down the job to McGonagall who is Deputy Headmistress of Hogwarts. McGonagall allows the boys to stay in school and gives them detention, seeing how sorry they are.
At Halloween, After Filch saw his cat Mrs. Norris petrified on the torch clamp and is believed that Harry killed her, Filch attacks Harry, but Dumbledore stops him, informing that Mrs. Norris had been petrified. He dismisses all the students, except Harry, Ron and Hermione, back to the dormitories.
During much of the year, several students have been petrified, for example, Collin Creevey was founded petrified by Dumbledore and McGonagall. Dumbledore is now convinced that Hogwarts is no longer safe and the Chambers of Secrets has been opened. After Harry goes to Dumbledore's office, Harry sees only the Sorting Hat and Dumbledore's pet phoenix Fawkes. Dumbledore appears, explaining how Fawkes is an magnificent creature who can carry large loads.
When Harry went into Tom Riddle's Diary, he watched the younger Dumbledore witnessing Riddle reporting an accused Hagrid to him, thus leading to his expulsion. Later on, Dumbledore is informed by Cornelius Fudge and Lucius Malfoy about the suspicion of Hagrid, opening the Chamber of Secrets. They visit Hagrid and take him to Azkaban.
Much later in the film, Dumbledore is informed by Harry who went down the Chamber of Secrets, how he saved Ginny from Tom Riddle's wrath and stabbing his diary, slaying the Basilisk and lifted to safety by Fawkes with Ginny, Ron, and the memory-erased Lockhart. Dumbledore congratulates Harry and Ron for being services to the school, and writes a letter to Azkaban to release Hagrid before he is visited by Lucius Malfoy and Dobby. After the conversation, Dumbledore lets Harry borrow the diary of Tom Riddle to confront Lucius over placing it in Ginny's cauldron and to free Dobby with one of his socks.
With all the students and ghosts are recovered fully, Dumbledore announces to the student as a special treat, that all of the exams are cancelled.
Dumbledore (in a different attire and has shorter beard) announces the school that the Dementors will be guarding the school while Sirius Black is at large, Remus Lupin is to be the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher and Hagrid to be the Care of Magical Creatures teacher.
In October, he is informed about the Fat lady's now empty portrait been slashed. Dumbledore arrives with Filch to the ruined portrait in the Grand Staircase tower, he orders Filch to round up the ghosts and tell them to search every painting in the castle for the Fat Lady, until Filch spots the Fat Lady in a landscape painting. The Fat Lady informs Dumbledore that the attacker was Sirius Black who has entered the castle. Dumbledore orders Filch to lock the gates, and the rest of the Gryffindor to the Great Hall to sleep for the night. After the gates are secured shut, Dumbledore and the teachers couldn't find Sirius anywhere in the castle.
During the Quidditch match with Gryffindor against Hufflepuff, Harry is almost killed when a Dementor intervenes, but Dumbledore saves him with the Arresto Momentum charm, and use the Patronus charm on the Dementors to drive them away.
He is later seen again, when Dumbledore, along with Cornelius Fudge and Walden Macnair arrive at Hagrid's hut to watch Macnair behead Buckbeak that attacked Draco Malfoy earlier in the school year. After Harry, Ron and Hermione have recovered in the Hospital Wing, Dumbledore advises Harry and Hermione to save two innocent lives. Using Hermione's time turner, Harry and Hermione rescue Buckbeak from being executed, Dumbledore, Fudge, Macnair and Hagrid don't know that, but Dumbledore dismisses Macnair from his executing services.
He is last seen in the climax, where Harry and Hermione return to the Castle after saving Sirius and Buckbeak, Dumbledore congratulates them briefly before he leaves to his office.
Dumbledore announces to the school of the Annual Triwizard tournament that will take part in Hogwarts. He announces that the Goblet of Fire will be held in the Great Hall. Apparently since the Ministry had decided that no under-age wizards or witches should place their names in the goblet, Dumbledore places a magic age-line around the Goblet of fire (this taught Fred and George the hard way). On the night of the names being fired out from the Goblet, Dumbledore unexpectedly receives another contestant in the name of Harry Potter. He later questions Harry if he placed his name in the Goblet or asked anyone to do it for him, and believes Harry when he is honest with him. However, he is unable to withdraw Harry from the tournament since the Goblet has a magic-binding contract stating that Harry must compete.
Dumbledore is seen as the announcer of the games, announcing the start and the final results of each task. Meanwhile, before the third task, Harry comes into his office to report to him about the dead body of Barty Crouch Sr., he finds an Pensieve and discovers that Dumbledore was attending the trial of Igor Karkaroff who confessed to the Ministry of Magic names of other Death Eaters, after Voldemort's defeat. He named Severus Snape as one, but Dumbledore defended him, and he then named Barty Crouch Jr. Dumbledore appears as Harry exits the Pensieve, calmly telling him that curiosity isn't a sin; Dumbledore explains more of Barty Crouch Jr., he was disowned by his father and was taken to Azkaban.
In the final task, Dumbledore uses his wand as a microphone to announce the following event. However, Dumbledore was unaware that Harry and Cedric were in the mercy of Pettigrew and Voldemort during the event. After Harry returned with the Portkey and Cedric's body, he is informed by a devastated Harry that Voldemort has returned, but Moody takes Harry to his office to interrogate further about the event. Dumbledore, along with McGonagall and Snape intervenes and force Moody to drink Veritaserum, where it is revealed that he isn't Moody, and Dumbledore finds the real Moody imprisoned in a magical trunk. The false Moody's Polyjuice Potion wears off and he is revealed as Barty Crouch Jr., working for Voldemort. Crouch Jr. is sent back to Azkaban, from which he had escaped.
The next morning, Dumbledore holds a memorial service for Cedric Diggory, despite the Ministry of Magic's disbelief of Voldemort's return. Later, Dumbledore visits Harry in his dormitory, and apologizes to him for the dangers he had to go through. Harry reveals that he saw his parents in the graveyard; Dumbledore names this effect as "Priori Incantatem", and acknowledges that even though Harry's parents appeared through Voldemort's wand, no spell can awaken the dead. Dumbledore reminds Harry that he is not alone.
Dumbledore arrived at the Ministry of Magic three hours early, unaware of the time change of Harry's trial. Cornelius Fudge denies Harry's answer to his question, regarding what actually took place on the night in question, leading to further arguments. Mrs Figg gives testimony as a witness of the event. Dumbledore tells Fudge that Voldemort could be behind this, but Fudge refuses to believe that Voldemort is back. In the end Harry is cleared of all charges, because Dumbledore reminds them that, expelling him from the school of using a charm to defend them against the Dementors is justifiable and that it is not forbidden to use magic in a matter of life or death if one is underage. However, after the trial, Dumbledore is seemingly ignoring Harry.
He is later seen in the Great Hall, announcing the new Defence Against the Dark Arts Teacher Dolores Umbridge, and the new Care of Magical Creatures teacher Wilhelmina Grubbly-Plank will take Hagrid's place whilst he is on a temporary leave. He is unaware that Umbridge is observing the school, and later stops Umbridge from banishing Professor Trelawney from the grounds, despite telling her that she has the right to fire teachers. Dumbledore again distances himself from Harry, knowing that Harry's mind is connected to Voldemort and can see visions of Voldemort when he gets a big emotionally charge such as happiness or anger.
After Harry had a vision of seeing Arthur being brutally attacked by Nagini, Dumbledore (with his back turned on Harry) advises Snape to give him Occlumency lessons in order to block his mind from Voldemort's influence.
After Harry's organisation "Dumbledore's Army" is exposed by Umbridge, Fudge and some of the Slytherin students, Dumbledore refuses to be imprisoned in Azkaban and escapes with Fawkes, resulting Umbridge to take over as headmistress. Dumbledore went into hiding from the remainder of the second act of the film.
After Bellatrix killed Sirius Black and with Harry cornering her in fury, Voldemort attempts to manipulate him, but Dumbledore arrives in time via Floo Network to save Harry by charming him out of the way. As Bellatrix escapes, Dumbledore duels with Voldemort, overpowering him and Voldemort attempts to possess Harry. As Dumbledore watches and attempts to reassure Harry, he manages to overcome his powers due to Harry's love for his friends and Sirius and claims that Voldemort is the weak one as Voldemort will never feel true love or friendship. With the Ministry officials finally caught a glimpse of him and Fudge is forced to admit that the Dark Lord is indeed back in power and resigns as minister in disgrace. With Umbridge fired from Hogwarts, Lucius Malfoy is then sent to Azkaban and Dumbledore reinstated as headmaster, he apologizes to Harry for keeping his distance from him, and they discuss the prophecy that Harry had found in the Department of Mysteries, and Harry discovers that in the end, only one can live, and that he and Voldemort are destined to fight each other.
Other Film Appearances
Video game appearances
LEGO Creator: Harry Potter
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
LEGO Creator: Harry Potter
LEGO Harry Potter: Characters of the Magical World
The Making of Harry Potter
Differences from the source material
- In Prisoner of Azkaban, Dumbledore does not say Harry's name at all.