In Kill Your Darlings, Daniel Radcliffe takes a radical step from his days playing the world’s favourite wizard by portraying Allen Ginsberg in his early years at Columbia University. It is there he becomes infatuated with Lucien Carr (Dane DeHaan) and strikes up friendships with beat legends, William Burroughs (Ben Foster) and Jack Kerouac (Jack Huston).

Daniel Radcliffe in Kill Your DarlingsDane DeHaan [L] and Daniel Radcliffe [R] in Kill Your Darlings

The film follows Ginsberg’s dramatic time at the university, from his early relationship with Carr to the murder investigation that would then shape the lives of all the promising artists. It’s a stylish entry from director John Krokidas; full of cigarette smoking, whisky swilling and late night plotting.

Watch the trailer for Kill Your Darlings

The critics have stamped approval on the movie, and Rotten Tomatoes tot up the scores to a very respectable 78% following the film’s world premiere at the 2013 Sundance Film Festival. "Unlike Walter Salles's recent adaptation of On The Road, which embraced the Beat philosophy with a wide and credulous grin, Kill Your Darlings is inquisitive about the movement's worth, and the genius of its characters is never assumed," said The Daily Telegraph.

David Cross David Cross is Louis Ginsberg, Allen's father

Variety called it: "A mysterious Beat Generation footnote is fleshed out with skilled performances, darkly poetic visuals and a vivid rendering of 1940s academia in Kill Your Darlings," while Entertainment Weekly say, "Radcliffe - hair permed into Ginsbergy college curls, full of vitality - holds the emotional center as a young artist in art and in life."

It was shown at the 2013 Toronto International Film Festival and it will have limited theatrical North American release on October 18, 2013. The U.K will see it on November 8th following its October 17th London Film Festival appearance.

Ben FosterJennifer Jason Leigh
Ben Foster and Jennifer Jason Lee are William Burroughs and Naomi Ginsberg

For Radcliffe, this role is yet another step in the direction of mature drama. He’s acted on the West End and, like his fellow Harry Potter star, Emma Watson, is working on revolutionising his reputation from child star to adult performer.

“For me, Kill Your Darlings is a film about young love in whatever form it takes. It wasn’t any more challenging than if you’re doing a sexual awakening scene with a girl,” said Radliffe about filming gay sex scenes to The Daily Record.

Michael C Hall and Daniel RadcliffeMichael C Hall and Daniel Radcliffe

“At no point did any of us want to do anything that would distinguish it from how we would fall in love with somebody. To my knowledge, there is no difference in how heterosexual and homosexual people fall in love. A lot of people are quick to ask if it’s a gay love story—well, yes, they are gay characters, but it’s just a love story.”

The 23-year-old is now looking to take a break after working on The Cripple Of Inishmaan. He was rumored to be playing Freddy Mercury in an upcoming biopic, but dismissed those rumours quick-smart with a view to taking some time out.

Kill Your DarlingsJack Huston and Dane DeHaan in Kill Your Darlings

“I do need a break – doing Cripple was amazing but the last month was slightly exhausting,” he told The Daily Star. “I’ve got three weeks off in October and I’m going to bum around New York and see some shows. I need to get some proper down time, I do need time off but the truth is I’m a workaholic.”

Daniel Radcliffe as Allen GinsbergDaniel Radcliffe has been lauded for his turn as Allen Ginsberg