From books to TV to movies, our collective popular culture is something that connects us and brings us together. What could be cooler than recognizing something like a character or a song that millions of other people will also recognize at the drop of a hat? A lot of times we take things in our popular culture at face value and don’t think about where they come from. But, many of the famous characters, shows, and movies we all know and love aren’t entirely fictional, but were based on real people and experiences. We’ve put together a list of the assumed inspirations behind famous images, characters, and people from our popular culture.
The Man Behind the Professor
The Harry Potter series is wildly popular across the globe, and so many parts of J.K. Rowling’s magical universe have become a part of our pop culture. The series may be fantasy, but there is at least one element of truth in the story. Severus Snape, Hogwart’s own mysterious and difficult Potions teacher, is actually based on someone J.K. Rowling knew in person.
J.K Rowling revealed that she drew inspiration for the infamous Snape from her high school science teacher. Mr. John Nettleship was the head of the science department at the Chepstow comprehensive school when Rowling attended as a teen. Nettleship apparently gave Rowling a hard time in his classes, and she never forgot it. She made Snape just as hard on Harry in her books!