“Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets” saved one of its biggest improvised scenes for the very end. After Hermione returns, she sits down at the Gryffindor table, just in time for Dumbledore’s end-of-term announcements. The celebrations are interrupted when Hogwarts gamekeeper, Hagrid (Robbie Coltrane), returns to the school following his brief stint in Azkaban.
In a touching scene, Harry welcomes him back and utters one of the franchise’s most heavily quoted lines, saying, “There’s no Hogwarts without you Hagrid,” before he gives the half-giant a big hug. Seeing the moment, Dumbledore rises and begins to clap, and he is quickly joined by Professor McGonagall (Maggie Smith), Harry, and the rest of the Great Hall. However, according to Collider, the school clapping scene happened completely by accident. Only Richard Harris was supposed to clap, but everyone ended up joining in, and it was kept in.
Other actors were seemingly inspired by this wave of improvisation and decided to put their own marks on the scene as well. Jamie Waylett, who plays Crabbe, also chose to join in with the clapping, despite the rest of the Slytherin table not doing so. The actor told The Leaky Cauldron that this was a personal acting choice during a 2007 interview. However, Draco Malfoy actor Tom Felton was not privy to this spontaneous decision and so he pulled Waylett back down onto the bench because he didn’t want the scene to be ruined. This moment also ended up making the final cut, and once again showcases Malfoy’s controlling tendencies and mistreatment of his friends.