JK Rowling To Expand HARRY POTTER Universe With Debut Screenplay on FANTASTIC BEASTS

jkr-fantastic-beastsIt’s been 2 years since the last Harry Potter film was out in theaters, and even longer since the final book for Harry Potter was released, but references to Harry Potter still abound even now.

Many people who are adults now grew up reading the books, so of course the love of Harry Potter and everything related to it would be present now, and will be so for years to come, even without this bit of news, that Warner Bros. is working with JK Rowling in making a new film based on the Harry Potter-related book, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

JK Rowling is actually going to be writing the screenplay for the film, which will be a first for her, and the story is going to focus on Magizoologist Newt Scamander, who “wrote” the Magical Beasts book in the Potterverse, and will thus take place 70 years prior to Harry Potter’s adventures at Hogwarts.

“It all started when Warner Bros. came to me with the suggestion of turning Fantastic Beasts into a film,” Rowling explained in a statement. “I thought it was a fun idea, but the idea of seeing Newt Scamander, the supposed author of Fantastic Beasts, realised by another writer was difficult. Having lived for so long in my fictional universe, I feel very protective of it and I already knew a lot about Newt. As hardcore Harry Potter fans will know, I liked him so much that I even married his grandson, Rolf, to one of my favourite characters from the Harry Potter series, Luna Lovegood.”

Rowling continued: “As I considered Warners’ proposal, an idea took shape that I couldn’t dislodge. Although it will be set in the worldwide community of witches and wizards where I was so happy for 17 years, Fantastic Beasts is neither a prequel nor a sequel to the Harry Potter series, but an extension of the wizarding world. The laws and customs of the hidden magical society will be familiar to anyone who has read the Harry Potter books or seen the films, but Newt’s story will start in New York, seventy years before Harry’s gets underway.”

How do you feel about expanding the Harry Potter world on film? What do you think about JK Rowling writing the screenplay for it?

via Empire.


Kate, William and Harry Cast Royal Spell on ‘Harry Potter’

The wizardly wonders of “Harry Potter” got an infusion of royal charm today when Prince William, Duchess Kate and Prince Harry visited the Warner Bros studio where the hit movies were produced.

Before they could get to their official duties, inaugurating the studio in Leavesden, about 20 miles outside London,  Prince William, 30, poked a little fun at his younger brother.

“Harry’s just excited to see a real-life talking owl in the Harry Potter studios,” he said of the 28-year-old prince.  “I haven’t told him yet that Harry Potter is fictional, so please keep the secret for a little longer.”

With that, the fun-loving trio was off, giggling and joking while visiting the Great Hall, learning to cast spells on Diagon Alley and getting a wand lesson and an invitation to “duel” with one another in the Gryffindor Common Room.

Getting a glimpse at the royals at ease were 500 children and their parents, all pulled from charities that have one of the royals as their patron, who joined the tour of the studio’s “The Making of Harry Potter Attraction,” according to the U.K.’s Mirror.

Read more about it here.

Millionth visitor attends Harry Potter Studio Tour

The insanely successful location at Warner Bros studio has just received it’s millionth visitor!

Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter opened on March 31 of this year, and today the beloved tour welcomed its millionth visitor.

Actor Mark Williams, who portrayed Mr. Weasley in the Harry Potter films, was on hand for the celebratory occasion. Williams also led a tour of the Studio Tour’s new Christmas decorations…

The Christmas makeover, which includes lots of holiday decorations in the Great Hall, can be seen at the Studio Tour through January 6. Since opening earlier this year, the Harry Potter Studio Tour has added various elements like a limited-time Dark Arts areaan iconic bridgeseen in the films, and now this holiday makeover.

Harry Potter Studio Tour

What a lucky kid!

Source: Hypable

$1000 Harry Potter collection to be released

And you thought the Wizard’s Collection was expensive.

EW reports that the studio is releasing Harry Potter: Page to Screen: The Complete Filmmaking Journey (never mind that I’m pretty sure can’t have two colons in the same title).  The eight-volume collection is designed to resemble a bookshelf at Hogwarts; “Six of the books focus on the workings of the creative departments behind the films — wardrobe, props, special effects, and the like — while the seventh is a commemorative keepsake offering an intimate look at the relationships that developed between the cast and crew over the decade it took to produce all eight films. But the best part by far is the eighth book: a scale replica of The Monster Book of Monsters (don’t worry, it doesn’t bite — I hope).”  I have no idea how that’s worth $1,000.

But maybe it’s worth $600?  The set is currently 40% off at Amazon, and you can click here to pre-order it.  The set is limited to 3,000 editions worldwide, and will be released on December 4th.  Hit the jump to check out the trailer.

Here’s a list of the extras:
• A cloth-covered case, styled to look like a shelf from a shop in Diagon Alley
• A cloth-bound edition of Harry Potter: Page to Screen 
• Seven additional volumes detailing theHarry Potter creative team’s ten years of extensive efforts:
* The Creature Shop Compendium: Flora and Fauna from the Harry Potter Films
* Environments Envisioned: Building Fantastic Sets and Scouting Dramatic Locations
* A Guide to the Graphic Arts Department: Posters, Prints, and Publications from the Harry Potter Films
* Movie Magic: Practical Props and Exciting Effects
* The Paintings of Hogwarts: Masterpieces from the School of Witchcraft and Wizardry Sets
* Ten Years Later: Life on Set with the Harry Potter Cast and Crew
* Wizard Wear and Muggle Attire: Costuming the World of Harry Potter

• A replica of The Monster Book of Monsters film prop
• A gilded portfolio of five frame-able prints of original Harry Potter concept art

Source: Collider


Win a Trip to London and Check Out the Harry Potter Exhibit!

This is probably about as close to getting an acceptance letter to Hogwarts, as Warner Bros., in collaboration with Entertainment Weekly, is giving away a chance for you to win a trip to London to visit the Warner Bros.’ Studio, which of course includes access to the Harry Potter Experience.

EW is excited to announce that Warner Bros. is giving away a prize sweeter than some Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes’ candy. To mark the upcoming Sept. 7 release of the 31-disc Harry Potter Wizard’s Collection set, the studio will be giving away a grand prize: A 3-day, 2-night trip for four to London to tour Warner Bros.’ studio, as well as  access to the “The Making of Harry Potter” exhibit. Two first prize winners will receive the Harry Potter Wizard’s Collection, containing all eight films on DVD/Blu-ray plus extras spread out over 31 discs.

I’d say that’s quite a wonderful Grand Prize… like winning the House Cup or something!  Just click on the image about to enter the sweepstakes.  You can enter once per day!

Check out the full article and the exclusive video of one of the behind-the-scenes extras that is part of the Wizard’s Collection set by clicking here.

YOU can go to Hogwarts!

What? You thought I was kidding? Warner Bros. Studios of London is giving tours of the Harry Potter film studios!

Tours have been running starting this year, as early as March, and you can book YOURS at http://www.wbstudiotour.co.uk/

Sarah Lyall, writing for the New York Times, presented us with a description of the tour.

“When they made the hourglasses that keep track of the house points,” he continued, referring to Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Slytherin and Ravenclaw, the four Hogwarts houses, “they used so many beads that they created a national bead shortage in England!” [Dan] beamed. (Dan is a tour guide, who was a Slytherin extra in the movies)

The tour, which is mostly self-guided, takes place in two vast Warner Bros. sound studios on the Leavesden Studios lot, about 20 miles northwest of London, where the Harry Potter movies were filmed. There are complete sets, like the Gryffindor boys’ dormitory, with its velvet-trimmed four-poster beds. There are the tiniest of props, like the flurry of hand-engraved envelopes announcing Harry’s acceptance to Hogwarts. Here is everything you wanted to know, and also everything you didn’t know you wanted to know.

My daughter Isobel, 12, and I had been worried about expectation inflation when we set out by car from West London, about a 40-minute trip. But our hearts lifted when in the distance we spotted something that looked suspiciously like the wizarding world’s version of public transportation, the magical three-decker Knight Bus (it was).

You can read the entire article here, and buy your tickets here!

(Just a disclaimer- the studio is in London. If you don’t live in the British Isles, you might want to reconsider going)

Leavesden Studio to Open Making of Harry Potter Tour

The month of March is going to be a good one this year. Not only is the first movie of The Hunger Games being released on March 23rd, but the Warner Bros. Studio Tour London- The Making of Harry Potter will be opening on March 31st! Leavesden Studios has been the home of the Harry Potter movie franchise since 2001 and is the home for many of the amazing scenes that are there.

If  you go on the tour, you will be able to see the incredible scale model of Hogwarts and some of its surrounding area that they used in the films when they needed to get full shots of the amazing castle. Not only will you be able to see Hogwarts, you will also be able to see multiple different sets including the Great Hall, Diagon Alley , Dumbledore’s Office, The Ministry of Magic, Harry’s cupboard under the stairs, #4 Privet Drive, The Gryffindor Common Room, the boys’ dormitory, the Potions Classroom, Professor Umbridge’s office, the Weasley kitchen and the Hogwarts Bridge!

This amazing walking tour will give any and all potter fans the incredibly amazing opportunity to journey behind the scenes and experience all the incredible magic that has gone into creating and filming the Harry Potter series. Not only will you be able to tour the different sets, but you will be able to see costumes and props that were used throughout all eight movies.
Potter fans all over are eagerly awaiting the opening of this incredible tour and cannot wait to experience the magical world that we have been apart of for the past 10 years.
To read the full article, go here.
-written in collaboration with Lexi