Harry Potter: A Look Back

Harry Potter: It All Ends

Please see the video below for the touching ending to the 10 years of incredible work done by the
Harry Potter cast and crew.

Harry Potter: It All Ends

Emotional Goodbyes

J.K. Rowling, Dan Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint Give Emotional Goodbye to 'Potter' Series

J.K. Rowling, Dan Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint Give Emotional Goodbye to 'Potter' Series

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Another Press Mention of Possible Book Seven in 07

Today there was another mention of a possible Book Seven release date coming in 2007. Bloomsbury, the UK publishers of the Harry Potter books, issued an early statement about the outlook of the company ahead of their annual stockholder meeting today, and wire reports are again including mentions of Book Seven coming out next year. Reuters reports:

"Harry Potter fans will have to wait until next year for the latest instalment of the boy wizard's antics to come out in hardback. The paperback version of "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" has gone to number one since its launch, the company said."

Please Note: This is most likely the reporters comment and not a direct quote from Bloomsbury. It is most certainly NOT an official announcement that the book is coming out next year either. While '07 is our best bet for Book Seven so far, nothing has changed as Jo specficially said earlier this week she is still writing the book. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince was released in paperback in the UK last week; the US paperback edition from Scholastic comes out next month on July 25.


OotP Tie-In Products to "Skew a Little Older"

OotP Book Cover ArtIn a recent article for Retailing Today, Warners Brothers spoke about their plans for the tie-in products with the release of the upcoming Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. They said they are moving away from some of the earlier types of traditional toys and will be making some changes in merchandising with this new film.

"Over at Warner Bros., Batman is in between films but that's not the case for Harry Potter. The fifth film in the series--"Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix"--is due out in 2007 and will feature a revamped licensing program.

"We signed the same partners for the first two movies and did the same for the third and fourth so we're starting anew again," said Karen McTier, evp of domestic licensing and worldwide marketing for Warner Consumer Products. "Harry is getting older so we're going to skew a little older with this program. Instead of traditional toys we're going to focus on collectable toys and we'll skew older in apparel, as well."

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix will be released next year on July 13, 2007.


Kids Think Harry Potter Will Die

Harry PotterLots of kids have become convinced Harry Potter won't survive his final adventure after author JK Rowling said she was killing off two characters.

JK made the announcement on a TV show on Monday, and it's sparked discussion on the Newsround message boards.

The most popular choice is the ultimate baddie Lord Voldemort, but Harry is close behind him in second.

On the boards, regular user Remus Lupin said: "If Harry does die it'll be taking down Voldemort with him!"

But Harry and the Dark Lord weren't the only choices. Hyperactiveginnyfan said: "Maybe the Weasley twins or Fleur and Bill. I hope Ron and Hermione and Harry don't die, else JK won't be able to do a special charity book in a few years!"

And Suzie Q said: "Pettigrew HAS to die sometime! He owes Harry his life!"

On Channel Four's Richard and Judy Show, JK said "One character got a reprieve, but I have to say that two die that I didn't intend to die."

Some people have pointed out that this means we still don't know how many characters will die, just that JK changed her mind about the fates of three people.


Wednesday, June 28, 2006

The Odds on Harry Deaths, According to Webmasters

USA Today asked me and Emerson of MuggleNet yesterday our odds on specific characters dying in book seven. We were asked on separate phone calls, not that you can tell from the results, which are nearly identical. Voldemort? 100 percent chance of death. Hermione and Ron, at most 12 percent. Enjoy!


Tuesday, June 27, 2006

SyFy Genre Award Noms for Dan, Emma, and GoF

Dan and Emma in GoFThe SyFy Genre Award nominations were announced today, and Goblet of Fire received several nominations. Dan Radcliffe (Harry) was nominated as "Best Actor," while Emma Watson (Hermione) was recognized in the "Best Actress" category. Both Emma and Dan were nominated in the "Best Young Actor" category as well. Finally, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was included in the nominations for "Best Movie." Voting is open to the public and will begin on July 10, with voting ongoing for the following 30 days. Thanks to everyone who let us know!


Monday, June 26, 2006

Hi-Res WMV and iPod Videos of Jo on "Richard and Judy"

Huge thanks to Roonwit and Chris for getting us these high-quality videos of J.K. Rowling on "The Richard and Judy Show" today. We've got videos ready for you in WMV and MP4 format.

J.K. Rowling on Richard and Judy, part 1 (WMV, 118 MB)
J.K. Rowling on Richard and Judy, part 1 (mp4, iPod friendly, 78 MB)

J.K. Rowling on Richard and Judy, part 2 (WMV, 54 MB)
J.K. Rowling on Richard and Judy, part 2 (mp4, iPod friendly, 36 MB)

Watch this post for more!


Audio from JKR Interview on the "Richard & Judy" Show

Thanks to TLC reader Roonwit, we now have the audio version for download of Jo's brand new interview on the Richard and Judy show. Jo does discuss Book Seven, character deaths and much more. There are two parts to this; video coming soon.

Part one (mp3)
Part two (mp3)

Thanks very much to Roonwit!Given the news today from Jo about the two characters death and more, we now have a poll going for you to vote on who you think will die, and you can vote here in our forum.


Rowling Says 2 Characters Die in Final Potter Book

J.K. RowlingLONDON (Reuters) - Children's author J.K. Rowling has revealed that at least two characters will die in the seventh and final installment of her bestselling Harry Potter series, but was careful not to say who.

Children and adults are expected to rush and buy the final Harry Potter novel in their tens of millions when it is complete, and if the publication of the sixth book is anything to go by, secrecy surrounding the plot will be tight.

Rowling has already said that the final chapter of the seventh book was written long ago.

"The final chapter is hidden away, although it's now changed very slightly," she said in an interview broadcast on Monday on Britain's Channel 4. "One character got a reprieve, but I have to say two die that I didn't intend to die."

When asked to be more specific, she added: "No, I'm not going to commit myself, because I don't want the hate mail or anything else."

She did explain that she understood an author's desire to kill off the main character of a successful series.

"I've never been tempted to kill him (Harry) off before the end of book seven, because I always planned seven books and that's where I want to go.

"I can completely understand, however, the mentality of an author who thinks 'Well, I'm going to kill them off because that means there can be no non-author-written sequels ... so it will end with me, and after I'm dead and gone they won't be able to bring back the character'."

Rowling, 40, wrote the first Harry Potter adventure when she was an unemployed single mother, but has gone on to become one of the richest authors in history with a personal fortune estimated at more than $1 billion.

The Harry Potter series has sold an estimated 300 million copies worldwide.


Sunday, June 25, 2006

JKR Talks Book Seven and the End of a Saga

J.K. RowlingAt the birthday party today for the Queen, author J.K. Rowling was asked about her thoughts and progress on Book Seven. She did not give any details nor clues about the book, but only said to Reuters:

"I am feeling sad as it is the last one. But so far, so good."

Pressed on when the book would be ready for publication, she would only say: "I'm doing well I think. You can never really tell till you get near the end. I am not quite there yet."

Some 2,000 children attended this event, and reports say that Jo signed many autographs and met with the lucky attendees. They also were treated to a reading from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince as well.

Unabashed by the frenzy of young fans stretching out eagerly for a signature, she said: "This is the bit I like. I like meeting them."

It must have ranked as one of the weirdest places she has ever been mobbed by pint-sized fans.

"I must say it is quite surreal to be here in Buckingham Palace," she said, disappearing behind a sea of little hands waving autograph books and Harry Potter paperbacks.

Update: The Times has
this report now where Jo also says "Harry Potter would have been 'a bit fazed' by the event," she said. "But he's quite cool, and I think he would have been impressed."


Photos of Jo and Video from Queen's Party

The Trio, Neville, and HedwigEarlier today, author J.K. Rowling attended the special party for the Queen today at Buckingham Palace. Reuters is now reporting that Jo was met by many of her fans at the party.

As children's authors mingled with the guests, the biggest reception was given to JK Rowling, mobbed by children desperate for an autograph from the author of the Harry Potter wizard sagas.

"I think it is a wonderful idea to celebrate the Queen's 80th birthday by celebrating children's literature. I really do think it is a golden age at the moment," she told reporters at the most surreal garden party ever staged at the palace.

Thanks to Page from DanRadcliffe.co.uk and Jenna from DanRadcliffe.com, we now have some great photos of JKR at the Queen's party, as well as some of actors Rupert Grint (Ron) and Matt Lewis (Neville)
here in our galleries. The video of the special Harry Potter Scene can be seen here (Please, right click and save as.) Jenna, from DanRadcliffe.com also has the video here as well. Thanks to Page and Jenna!

Update: Emma, from
SnitchSeeker.com sent us the transcript she made of the video which you can read below. Thanks Emma!

Update #2: More photos online from the AP,
here. Some similar photos are up at the BBC site as well.


Party at the Palace Today; JKR, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, Matt Lewis Attend

Actors Rupert Grint (Ron), Emma Watson (Hermione), and Matt Lewis (Neville) were in attendance as the Children's Party at the Palace, celebrating the Queen's 80th birthday, took place today at Buckingham Palace. Author J.K. Rowling arrived earlier at the party and read from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince. CBBC Newsround reports that "JK Rowling was among one of the first celebrities to make her way into the garden." The BBC aired the entire play that was to include a special Harry Potter scene, and we can report that Rupert, Emma, and Matt were sitting in the row in front of the Queen, watching the play. You can watch the BBC report on the festivities via this link (then on the right side where it says "See some of the Characters").

As we told you previously, the Harry Potter scene that aired was filmed on the Gryffindor Common room set. The scene included the Trio and Neville, along with a mention of PEEVES by Harry, who apparently said something along the lines that he knows it's the Queen's birthday because Peeves was using it as an excuse "to drop blue and red eggs on people at breakfast." Unfortunately there was no footage of Jo's reading at the party on the BBC broadcast. You can see some wire photos from Getty
online here which include Jo, as well as Rupert and Matt by the Queen. Stay tuned, we will have more up when we get it!


New Interview with a Young Sirius Black

Matt from HarryPotterFanZone, let us know about a new interview they have with James Walter, the actor who plays a young Sirius Black in the upcoming Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix movie. The interview focuses on how James Walter landed the part, working with new director David Yates, and info on the pensieve scene. Quotage:

HPFZ: Have you begun filming as Young Sirius Black yet? If so, how do you think you did?
JW: "Our scene is being filmed in July as the production is in the middle of a one month hiatus currently so we can finish our exams but we did have a screen test in costume with some other actors which gave us a great insight into what the procedure will be like. I'm really looking forward to it."

HPFZ: Can you describe David Yates' filming style? For example, Chris, Alfonso and Mike all applied a unique spin to the films. Does David?
JW: "Definitely. I've noticed through certain prefaces I've been allowed to watch that he's a really personal director. He's very calm with the actors and during the audition process he made us feel really welcomed. He's subtle, easy to approach and still makes sure he fulfills his vision. Mike has a distinct style which worked extremely well for the Goblet of Fire which dealt with fantastic action scenes during the Triwizard tournament but David is the perfect choice for this film in particular which is a lot more about emotion and for the first time, the real frustration we begin to see in Harry. He's the perfect choice and I can't wait to begin the adventure."

Filming for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is currently on hiatus and will resume next month.


Saturday, June 24, 2006

Sophie Dahl Talks Potter and JKR

In celebration of the Queen's 80th birthday, there will be a large children's party in London tomorrow, highlighting many of the famous figures in children's literature. Along with such authors as Philip Pullman, Eric Hill, and Raymond Briggs, J.K. Rowling will be among those reading from their novels. Jo will be reading from Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince at 5:30pm. There is also to be a special play following this reading, called "The Queen's Handbag," which is an adaptation of Roald Dahl's The BFG. The granddaughter of author Roald Dahl, Sophie Dahl, will be one of the stars of the play. In a new interview with the Times, Ms. Dahl speaks about her famous grandfather, the Harry Potter books, and J.K.R.

"Well, what's interesting about the Potter phenomenon is that my grandfather's books came before," says Dahl. Are you saying she ripped him off, I ask, thrilled at the prospect of a stand-up fight between the two women at Sunday's garden party?

"Well no," she says carefully, "but JK Rowling has been very generous in acknowledging how she was influenced by him, and you can see it in Potter. My grandfather was probably funnier than her, and she is probably more epic, but it's clear how like him she is in other ways. She's interested in good and evil and, like him, isn't at all afraid of the dark side of life."

The BBC has also put together this page where you can hear excerpts from some of the other classic children's books being featured at the party, as well as downloads to help you host your own party at home. Highlights and more from the Children's Party at the Palace will be aired tomorrow on the BBC at approximately 6pm.


Hedwig Causes Disturbance at the Palace

As we have been telling you, tomorrow there will be a special party at Buckingham Palace in honor of the Queen's 80th birthday, where author J.K. Rowling will be reading from Half-Blood Prince. As part of the festivities, there is to be a play that includes both a taped appearance from several actors from the Harry Potter films, as well as a live appearance by Ook, aka Hedwig, Harry's Owl from the movies. UK tabloid The Sun is reporting tonight that apparently Hedwig caused quite a stir today at the castle among the Muggles during rehearsals for her part in the play.

"Ook took flight during rehearsals in the gardens for a play to mark the Queen's 80th birthday. As he soared over the palace walls he set off an alarm and armed cops swooped within seconds to protect Her Majesty.

Ook flew into nearby Hyde Park, where the Wireless O2 music festival was being held. The din meant Ook -- who plays Harry's pet Hedwig in the Potter films -- couldn't hear his trainer's whistle. A source said: "He started a real commotion. The police arrived in seconds after he flew off. He made himself scarce and his handlers and trainers went to Hyde Park to look for him."

Ook returned last night safe. The source said: "We had a spare, but we're delighted to find Ook. He's precious."

Children's Party at the Palace is being broadcast on the BBC tomorrow starting at approximately 6pm (following the World Cup game) and TLC will have video up as soon as we can of the highlights, so stay tuned!


Friday, June 23, 2006

Emma Watson at Wireless Festival in London

Emma WatsonWith filming for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix currently on hiatus, many of the actors are taking advantage of their break and having some fun. Actress Emma Watson (Hermione) attended a concert today in London, and you can see photos of her at the Wireless Festival here in our galleries.


Thursday, June 22, 2006

Jo Rowling, Doctor of Laws

J.K. RowlingJ.K. Rowling will receive a Doctor of Laws honorary degree on July 6 from the University of Aberdeen for her contributions to multiple sclerosis research. She said, of the honor:

"I am extremely honoured to be receiving this honorary degree from such a distinguished Scottish university, with such a dynamic international reputation.

I am also particularly pleased to support the work that the university's institute of medical sciences is doing on MS research.

As the patron of the MS Society Scotland, and someone with personal experience of the devastating effects of MS, it is a great privilege to be able to help the institute continue its pioneering work into the causes and effects of multiple sclerosis.

She will receive the degree in a ceremony at the university's Marischal College. Other honorees are American space pilot Brian Binnie and chairman of Baxters Food Group, Audrey Baxter.


Jason Isaacs talks Lucius and Phoenix

Jason Isaacs as Lucius MalfoyActor Jason Isaacs has given a new interview where he discusses his role as Lucius Malfoy, and filming for the upcoming Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. With filming currently on hiatus and due to resume next month, Jason says of his scene involving the battle at the Ministry:

"My bit is in September and October. It's a big blue-screen battle for a lot of it so that will be a laugh," he says. He adds, "We always have to sign these incredible confidentiality clauses where we offer up our children's eyeballs if we ever break them. I've never quite understood since they're the most popular books on the planet, but anyway, I think I'm involved in the big battle."

Isaacs admits, "I torture myself by always trying to be interesting and human on screen, but every now and again it's great to be in 'Harry Potter' and just rip it up and be as singularly evil and unpleasant as possible."

Jason is currently filming a new movie in Canada for the BBC, and can also be seen in his new television series called "
Brotherhood," which debuts on Showtime July 9. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix will be released next year on July 13, 2007.


Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Video and Screencaps of HP Scene from BBC One Queen's Party Ad

The Trio, Neville, and HedwigWe now have the video of the portion of the new BBC commercial for the Queen's birthday party which features the Trio and Neville. You can see it here (Windows media). We also have an Ipod friendly version, here. Please, don't forget to Right Click and Save As. The screencaps of this video clip are available here in our gallery. Thanks again to Roonwit!


Happy Order of the Phoenix Day!

OotP Book Cover ArtThree years ago, we had just fastened our hands around the behemoth Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, the book where Harry gets mean, gets kissed and gets a destiny. And yesterday we got this first look at the kids during the Order of the Phoenix filming period, while we wait for the last look at Hogwarts in book seven. Happy anniversary, Potter peeps.


Order of the Phoenix to be Simultaneously Released in IMAX

OotP Book Cover ArtWarner Brothers has announced that Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix will be released in IMAX the same day the film is released in general theaters next year on July 13. According to this press release, OotP is WB's thirteenth film to be released in the IMAX format.

"The Harry Potter series has been a huge success in IMAX theatres, and we are delighted to combine this next exciting installment with The IMAX Experience to offer Harry Potter fans another magical adventure for 2007," said Dan Fellman, President of Domestic Distribution at Warner Bros. Pictures. "The IMAX theatre network is a proven source of incremental revenue that we believe will grow exponentially as more IMAX theatres continue to open around the world."

"We're delighted to be working with Warner Bros. Pictures on our 2007 film slate this early in the year," said IMAX Co-Chairmen and Co-CEOs Richard L. Gelfond and Bradley J. Wechsler. "The last two Harry Potter films we released to IMAX theatres grossed a combined $34 million, demonstrating the strong worldwide appeal of Harry Potter and The IMAX Experience. This new title gives us a powerful kick-start to next year's film slate."

Filming for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix is currently on hiatus and will resume next month.


OotP Promo Image Shown in NYC

OotP Promo ImageAint It Cool News.com has a new promotional image for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix that was displayed at the recent New York Licensing Show. The poster shows Harry brandishing his lit wand, with Hogwarts castle in the background. Caution to parents, beware of language at this link.


Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Disney Pits SS Against COS in 'Click it to Pick it'

Sorcerer Stone Soundtrack Cover ArtDisney's current "Click it to Pick it" contest, in which the movie that receives the most votes on their website is aired on television, is between the first and second Harry Potter movies. They will announce the winner on Sunday night at 8 PM EST. Thanks, Sarah!


Harry Reappears in 'Get Fuzzy'

Get Fuzzy Comic

Today's "Get Fuzzy" comic strip again centers around Harry Potter, following up on yesterday's shocking discovery that the books are a work of fiction.


First Look at Trio, Neville in Scene for Queen's Birthday Party

The Trio, Neville, and HedwigWe have our first look at Dan Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and Matt Lewis as they appear in character for a specially filmed scene for the upcoming birthday party for the Queen this weekend. You can see a still photo here in our galleries, taken from a new BBC commercial for the party, which will be broadcast live on the BBC this Sunday, June 25. Also, the Radio Times website now has a complete cast list of performers taking part in this special play. The video clip with the Trio and Neville will air during this play. This clip was taped recently, filmed on the set of the Gryffindor common room for Order of the Phoenix. Stay tuned, as we hope to have the video of the BBC commercial that shows a bit more of the Harry Potter actors here soon! Thanks very much to Roonwit!


Bloomsbury Looks for Vilest Villain

Bloomsbury, publishers of the U.K. Harry Potter books, has launched a search for the literary villains readers most love to hate. As part of a campaign to promote Mark Walden's novel, H.I.V.E. ("Higher Institute of Villanous Education"), Bloomsbury has created a website where readers can vote for their favorite literary villain. You-Know-Who is, of course, on the list --as is Draco Malfoy. The - erm - "winner" will be announced on September 4, to coincide with the publication of H.I.V.E.


Monday, June 19, 2006

Fiona Shaw Onstage in London

Fiona ShawActress Fiona Shaw (Aunt Petunia) will be appearing on the London stage for a limited run in "Woman and Scarecrow," by Irish playwright Marina Carr. Whatsonstage.com gives this description of the play:

A Woman - gaunt and ill, haggard after giving birth eight times - faces death. What was life? What was love? What else could have been? Full of mordant, bitter humour, this is a passionate threnody from one of Ireland's leading playwrights.

Preview performances of "Woman and Scarecrow" at the Royal Court Theatre begin on June 16; the show opens on June 21 and runs through July 5.


Saturday, June 17, 2006

Harry's Mark in the Sky Over New York City

Harry's MarkThis picture was taken at 7:30 pm on Friday night, June 16, over the New York City area. It was taken with a cellphone camera by Asaf, who was visiting his parent's house in Whitestone, NY, which is in the borough of Queens.

He says it struck him as the oddest looking cloud he had ever seen, and although he's not a big Harry Potter fan (he doesn't dislike Harry either), because of his job as a designer at Random House, who publishes the Harry Potter audio books, he thought it would be fun for Potter fans to see, and sent it in for us to share with all the Wizard News readers.

A scientific mind might postulate that the phenomenon is an airplane contrail that possibly got partially skewed by the wind, and it just coincidentally looks like Harry Potter's scar in the sky. But avid readers of J.K. Rowling don't believe in coincidences, and if everything in her books is a clue to something that happens later in that book or in a future episode, then perhaps the appearance of Harry's mark in the sky is a signal that something big is about to happen. But what?

Remember what Mad-eye Moody always says, "Constant vigilance!"


Williams' HP Work Showcased on New CD

Music of John Williams CD Cover ArtMusic From the Movies reports that among other blockbuster movies John Williams has scored, selections from the Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone soundtrack will be featured on his latest CD, "Film Music Masterworks," which can be purchased online at Footlights.com.


Matchstick Hogwarts

Matchstick HogwartsMatchstick Marvels has created yet another astonishing model, constructed solely from matchsticks: the Hogwarts castle. The model, which comprises over a half-million matchsticks and took a whopping three years to build, will be displayed at a Spanish museum in December.

Thanks to Patrick for the tip!


Thursday, June 15, 2006

'GoF' Sirius & Moody Visual Effect Stills

Sirius FireSpecial effects company BUF -- which has a portfolio comprised of works from the Batman Begins movie and U2's Vertigo music video -- has just posted some screen stills, showcasing how they animated certain characters from the Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire film. Behind-the-scenes images are now available for you to view at the following:

Sirius speaking through the fire
Mad-Eye Moody's revealing transformation

Thanks to
UHP for the tip!


Rowling on Forbes Celebrity 100 List

J.K.R.Once again Harry Potter author JK Rowling, who is currently working on the last book in the series, has been added to Forbes magazine Celebrity 100 List. This time around Ms. Rowling enters the list at number 19, previously she had been ranked at the 22nd, 15th and 6th spots.

According to the

One of the few billionaires on our list, J.K. Rowling is preparing to close the book on her Harry Potter series. The next installment, the seventh in the series, is rumored to be her last, although she'll continue to write and will likely explore other parts of the Potter milieu. Worldwide sales of the Potter books have topped 300 million copies worldwide. The Goblet of Fire was last year's highest-grossing film, with a worldwide box office take of $892 million.

The top 10 celebrities on the list are Tom Cruise, The Rolling Stones, Oprah Winfrey, U2, Tiger Woods, Steven Spielberg, Howard Stern, 50 Cent, the cast of The Sopranos and Dan Brown.


Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Ralph Fiennes Interviewed in The Observer

Ralph FiennesIn a new interview in the New York Observer, actor Ralph Fiennes (Lord Voldemort) discusses award nominations, stage vs. screen performance and more -- this despite the fact that he calls interviews "too exhausting to hate." Mr. Fiennes will continue his Tony-nominated performance in the title role of the "Faith Healer" until the play closes in August. He will then take a holiday before reporting for duty on the set of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, about which he says: "'It's a great lot of fun,' he said, and broke into a sunny smile. 'I think I'm going to get to do a great duel against Michael Gambon, who plays Dumbledore,' After that, he plans to start raising money, because, guess what? That's right: Next, he'll direct."Note to parents -- this interview contains strong language.


'Potter' Fantasy Banknotes Now Available

Harry Potter Bank Note
For all those fans who collect Harry Potter items, you will be happy to know that you can now purchase some fantasy banknotes featuring many of the actors from the movies.

Thanks to UHP for the tip!


Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Goblet of Fire Wins Golden Trailer Award

Golden Trailer AwardsThe trailer for Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was named winner in the "Best Animation/Family" category at the seventh annual Golden Trailer Awards. These awards honor movie trailers which they feel are " works of art in their own right, expertly blending elements of cinema and advertising." Congratulations to WB and The Ant Farm.


Georgia Woman Appeals Potter Book Ban Ruling

Last month we told you of a woman who lost her attempt to have the Gwinnett County school board in Georgia ban the Harry Potter books. The school board rejected this claim, allowing the books to remain on the shelves, and now Laura Mallory has filed a written appeal of this decision. Previously, this mother of four had filed complaints against all of the Potter books, saying they had "evil themes, witchcraft, demonic activity, murder, evil blood sacrifice, spells and teaching children all of this." As to what will happen next with this appeal , the Gwinnett Daily Post reports that:"Superintendent J. Alvin Wilbanks will now have 10 days to submit a copy of the appeal, the transcript of evidence and proceedings from the public hearing, and all other related materials to the Georgia Board of Education. Once the appeal is filed with the state, the legal services division of the Georgia Department of Education will determine the next step in the Harry Potter saga." Thanks Andy!


Potter Stars Cast in Queen's Play

Dan, Emma, and RupertHarry Potter stars Dan Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint will be among the celebs taking part in a Royal birthday celebration for children.

The trio have landed roles in a kids' play to mark the Queen's 80th birthday, held at Buckingham Palace on 25 June.

The Potter clip has already been filmed and will be shown at the palace on a video screen. Dan won't actually be at the palace as he'll be on holiday.

Two thousand children have been given tickets for the star-studded event.

Kelly Osbourne and Jonathan Ross have also been cast in the play, which will be a mixture of live acting and video clips.

The production, called The Queen's Handbag, is part of the Children's Party at the Palace. It will be broadcast on BBC One and the CBBC Channel on the day.

Postman Pat

The idea behind the party is to celebrate the success of British children's literature and to encourage kids to read more. The play's storyline is top secret, but organisers say there will be a specially-written scene including Harry and his friends.

Other big names from kids' literature - including Winnie the Pooh, Mary Poppins and Postman Pat - will also be making an appearance.


Although the Queen had her real 80th birthday on 21 April, she also gets an official birthday, on 17 June.

The Queen gets another birthday because it's thought the weather is more likely to be better in June, making outdoor parties that bit more fun.


Sunday, June 11, 2006

'Potter' Stars at the Tony Awards

Richard Griffiths with his Tony AwardTonight stars that have appeared on Broadway in the last year were honored by their peers at the 60th Annual Tony Awards. From the Harry Potter movies, Ralph Fiennes, Richard Griffiths, Frances de la Tour, Zoë Wanamaker and the voice of the books Jim Dale were all nominated for awards.

To start the night off, Frances de la Tour, won as 'Best Performance by a Featured Actress in a Play' for her work in The History Boys, beating out Zoë Wanamaker for her role in Awake and Sing!

Jim Dale, the voice behind the U.S. audio versions of the Harry Potter books lost out to Christian Hoff from Jersey Boys for 'Best Performance by a Featured Actor in a Musical'.

Ralph Fiennes lost to Richard Griffiths who won 'Best Performance by a Leading Actor in a Play' for his work in The History Boys.

You can view some images of the stars

Congratulations to all.


Saturday, June 10, 2006

Some Say Rowling Is Not The 'Greatest Living British Writer'

J.K. RowlingOn Wednesday we updated all with the news that JK Rowling, author of the ever popular Harry Potter books, had been chosen as the Greatest Living British Writer in a poll by the UK's Book Magazine. It would seem that two members of the press have a problem with this and discuss their reasons as to why Ms. Rowling should not be considered for the title. According to Daniel Woolstencroft from Blogcritics:

For Rowling to be given this accolade above such talented and accomplished writers as Iain Banks, Philip Pullman, and Salman Rushdie is nothing short of outrageous. For her share of the votes to be three times that of Pratchett is downright appalling.

Rowling's prose is deeply unimaginative, when compared to the vast majority of the other authors on this list. Her content is unoriginal, even if she is dismissive of her peers and cites other sources as the inspiration for her work. And she's not exactly the most prolific author in the world.

Times online writer Anna Burnside states:

So it came as something of a surprise to discover that readers of The Book Magazine have voted JK Rowling as the greatest living writer in Britain. How can this be? She is no more the greatest living writer in Britain that George Galloway is the greatest living statesman, or Jack Vettriano is the greatest living artist. She is not even the greatest living writer of children's books. She had one good idea that became a formula that she has now worked into the ground.

Thanks to Stuart you can read another scathing piece

Editor's Note: Now this editor asks the question - Can we be wrong? My answer to that question of course would be a resounding NO. Ms. Rowling has entertained millions of readers across the globe, yet when given this title by her fans her writings are called 'unimaginative' and the results of the poll 'depressing.'

Why is it when a writer is chosen by her fans for such a title, we are deemed as not knowing what we are talking about? We, her fans, do not know a good book when we read it, yet we wait breathlessly for the next saga in the series. We mourn and cheer for our favorite characters, we may disagree with a certain storyline, but we will pick up the next book and enjoy it for what it is. Are we to be denied the enjoyment of Rowling's imagination just because some 'writers' deem our choice as wrong?

Why is it that every time Ms. Rowling's achieves an honor there are some who come out of the woodwork to spew the reasons why she shouldn't be given all of these accolades? I cannot really say, but some would guess that sour grapes are a reason, and while they all seem to say that they do not begrudge Ms. Rowling her success, I would have to disagree.

In the end, the opinion of the above mentioned authors are just that, their opinions, and everyone is entitled to their own, even this editor.


Friday, June 09, 2006

Fiennes, de la Tour, Dale Theater Clips Available Online

The official website for the Tony Awards has a gallery of video clips of past and present nomineees. The clips include scenes from nominated performances and shows as well as backstage interviews. Of interest to Potter fans will be the interviews with Jim Dale (narrator, U.S. audiobooks) and Frances de la Tour (Madame Maxime), and the clips from The History Boys (with Ms. de la Tour), The Threepenny Opera (Mr. Dale), Faith Healer with Ralph Fiennes (Voldemort) and Awake and Sing! with Zoe Wanamaker (Madam Hooch).

The Tony Awards ceremony will be broadcast on CBS this Sunday, June 11 at 8:00 p.m. (EDT) on CBS.

Thanks, Felice!


Thursday, June 08, 2006

Alan Rickman to Star in New Film and Direct in Edinburgh

Alan RickmanDuring the hiatus from Order of the Phoenix filming, Alan Rickman will be keeping busy. He is attached to star in the film The Villa Golitsyn with Kristin Scott Thomas, which begins shooting in France this summer and is slated for a 2007 release. He will also bring "My Name is Rachel Corrie," which he directed and co-wrote, to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. The play will be performed at the Pleasance Courtyard Theatre on Aug 3-13,15-20 and 22-28. Tickets for the Fringe Festival go on sale July 12.

Thanks, Andy!


Devon Murray & Stan Ianevski Visit Japan

Stan and DevonHarry Potter actors Devon Murray (Seamus Finnegan) and Stan Ianevski (Viktor Krum) are currently visiting Japan on vacation and we have some photos of their trip.

Thanks to John for the
photos and the following information:

1. Devon & Stan visit the Red Monkey shop in Shibuya - Red Monkey Watches are known as celebrity watches. They both picked their favorite ones.

2. In Fukushima, they visited a girl’s school and experienced tea ceremony.

3. At the school, they played "KOTO," a Japanese harp.

4. They talked about their filming experiences and personal story.

5. After coming back to Tokyo, they met some sumo wrestlers.

6. In Sasebo, Kyushu (Southern island), they visited a famous hamburger shop "LOGKIT" and met The Burger MAMA-san.

7. Visited a famous local cookie factory in Sasebo and wore the worker’s costume.

8. Devon & Stan on the glass top of a high bridge (43m from the sea level) in Sasebo.

9. They posed at YY Boueki shop in Sasebo with the Japanese promoter, Mune.

On June 9th, Devon & Stan will make an appearance at the Hotel Monterey La Sceur, in Osaka, Japan from 2 pm through 5 pm. There is a fee for autographs and photos, and on the June 11th, both will make an appearance at RERA Outlet Mall in Chitose, Hokkaido from 11 am through 6 pm.

You can get more information
here (in Japanese) and for event and appearance information, you can call 090-9140-9104.


Rowling Named Best British Author

J.K. RowlingHarry Potter author JK Rowling has been voted the best British author that is still alive.

She got three times as many votes as the second-placed writer, Discworld creator Terry Pratchett.

The three authors that came next in the survey from The Book Magazine have all won the most important book award in the UK, the Booker Prize.

Another kids' favourite Philip Pullman - who wrote His Dark Materials - also made the top 10, at number six.

JK Rowling is currently hard at work on the seventh and final book in the Harry Potter series.


Tuesday, June 06, 2006

New Michael Gambon Interview: Driving, Dumbledore and More

Michael Gambon recently appeared on the British television show Top Gear, and sat down with presenter Jeremy Clarkson for a chatty and very funny interview in which he discussed cars, interviews, theater and film. You can see this interview in WMV and iPod-friendly format here, thanks to our reader Sarah, who sent it in:

MP4 (iPod Friendly)

Here's the Dumbledore bit -- but please bear in mind that this was said in a tongue-in-cheek manner:

Jeremy Clarkson: " . . . but of course since then, now Harry Potter has come along."
Michael Gambdon: "Yeah, I'm Dumbledore. Richard Harris did two films, and he died. I am now on my third."

JC: "Do you understand the first thing that's been said in Harry Potter?"
MG: "Well, I read the script and learn the lines and I try to understand. I have to understand it, don't I, sort of . . . Quite often I don't know what's going on."

Thanks Sarah!


Monday, June 05, 2006

EW: Harry Potter Number Two Fictional Character

There is a new list out from Entertainment Weekly magazine, this time of the top fictional characters. Harry Potter came in at number two on their list of top franchise characters, with Wolverine from X-Men taking the top spot:

Few other teenagers could boast of vanquishing evil wizards and box office records even before puberty began to take root. The most recent film, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, has raked in $290 million, bringing the series' total box office to more than $1 billion. The sixth chapter, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix - directed by series newcomer David Yates (The Girl in the Cafe) - will hit theaters next summer.

Note: yes we know that they have the number wrong, it's the fifth film, not the sixth. Thanks to everyone who emailed!


Friday, June 02, 2006

New HPEF Convention: Prophecy 2007

HPEF, the same group who brought Potter fans Nimbus 2003, The Witching Hour, and the upcoming Lumos 2006 convention, have announced their new event: Prophecy 2007. Being held in Toronto, Ontario Canada, Prophecy 2007: From Hero to Legend will occur August 2-5 next year. Hotel and registration information will be coming soon. Members from HP Education Fanon will be at Lumos to answer questions and more, so stay tuned! Thanks Doris!