SPELLBINDING director David Yates wasn't the only Sintelliner to play a major part in bringing Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix to the screen - choreography wizard Paul Harris did too!

Paul (47), a former champion ballroom dancer, was thrilled to work with his old pal on the movie's spine-tingling wand fight sequence.

It was the fourth time he has teamed up with David, having previously offered the award-winning filmmaker a helping hand on The Tichborne Claimant, The Sins and The Way We Live Now.

Paul said: "I was delighted when David asked me to work on Harry Potter. At first I thought I would just be doing some movement coaching, but I ended up choreographing most of the scenes."

He added: "David had a very clear vision. He wanted the scene to have grace and style and a root in artistic movement, but also to be unique to Harry Potter."

Paul, a real-life Billy Elliot, grew up in Haydock - just a few miles down the road from David Yates - and started dancing competitively at the age of eight.

He won the British Open Championship at the famous Blackpool Dance Festival in 1975, aged 15, and went on to become the world number one Latin American-style dancer.

But, after reaching the pinnacle in his field, he retired from competitive dancing in 1983 to study acting, before combining the two skills as a choreographer.

Since making the career switch he has worked on numerous award-winning shows, including the BBC adaptation of Bleak House and the memorable laser sequence in movie blockbuster Entrapment.

Paul added: "I've worked with some great actors - Catherine Zeta-Jones, Gary Oldman, Brittany Murphy and Scarlett Johanssen to name just a few.

"But the best director I've ever come across is David Yates. He has a steely determination, fantastic integrity and a real clarity of vision."

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is in cinemas today (Thursday, July 12).