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

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Emma Watson Short-Listed to Play Teen Shark Attack Victim

Emma WatsonWhen surfer girl Bethany Hamilton was attacked by a shark off the North Shore of Kauai, Hawaii,bit in 2003, she lost an arm, but not her drive. A movie of the story of her life is set to star shooting this fall, and Harry Potter's Emma Watson is being mentioned as playing Bethany.


Happy Birthday, Jo Rowling and Harry Potter!

Harry (because he lives through the series - you heard it here first, folks :P) is 26 today, and his creator, Jo Rowling, is 41. As is custom here on Leaky, we've brought you some special artwork to celebrate, this time from fandom artist PrettyAnnaMoon, who has given us the following gorgeous image of the Weasley family celebrating such a day. Enjoy, everyone; thanks, Anna; Jo, we'll all see you soon!


Alan Rickman on Being a 'Baddie'

Alan RickmanScotland on Sunday has posted an interview with the Snape actor. In it he discusses being a "baddie" in movies such as Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, Die Hard - plus several more. With a note of sarcasm, Rickman says, "Oh, God, it's years since I played the villain ... I haven't played a baddie for ages." The article talks not only about how playing the role of villain has made him quite desirable among women, but also about upcoming parts in plays and films.


Saturday, July 29, 2006

JKR, King and Irving are NYC's Hottest Ticket

John Irving, Jo Rowling, and Stephen KingTickets for "An Evening With Harry, Carrie and Garp," the charity reading from JK Rowling, Stephen King and John Irving at Radio City Music Hall next week, are in high demand, with some seats selling for well over their face value. The event comprises two evenings of readings by the authors, "surprise guests" and question-and-answer sessions with sudience members. It is expected to raise over $2.5 million (USD) for the Haven Foundation and Doctors Without Borders.

Harry Potter fans naturally hope to receive a glimmer of Book 7 news from the readings on August 1 and 2, or from Jo's
Press Conference the morning of August 1.

Team Leaky will, of course, be at all these events in New York City next week and will keep you updated with all the news!


Friday, July 28, 2006

'Driving Lessons' to Premiere in London

Rupert GrintThe London premiere of Rupert Grint's and Julie Walters latest movie Driving Lessons, will take place on September 4th, at the Vue Cinema in Leicester Square. Tickets are currently not available, but for those fans living in London you should keep checking the cinema site.

The movie will also be previewed at this years Edinburgh International Film Festival, which takes place from August 14th through the 27th. Audiences in the U.S. will get a chance to see the movie in certain cities starting on October 13, 2006.


Thursday, July 27, 2006

Phoenix Filming Resumes in Oxfordshire

OotP Book Cover ArtThe Oxford Mail reports that film crews for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix were in the vicinity of Blenheim Palace preparing for shooting there this week. Although Warner Bros. has not discussed details of the filming, the Mail reveals that "a location near the park's lake will feature in the much-anticipated [film]."

Daniel Radcliffe was reported to be on the scene along with other members of the cast (identities not confirmed) and crew. "A spokesman said: 'I'm afraid I can't give out too may details at this stage, as the film is not released until July 2007 and we don't want to spoil it for audiences.'

Other Oxfordshire locations, including
Christ Church and the Bodleian Library in Oxford, have been featured in previous Harry Potter films.


Potter Actors, Director to be Showcased at Venice Film Festival

The 63rd Annual Venice Film Festival will feature three films in which Harry Potter personnel are involved. In consideration for the Golden Lion prize are "Children of Men," directed by Alfonso Cuarón (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban) and Brian de Palma's "The Black Dahlia," featuring actress Fiona Shaw (Aunt Petunia).

"The Magic Flute," directed by Kenneth Branagh (Gilderoy Lockhart), will also be screened at the Festival, but is not in consideration for the top prize, as it is from a director "already established in past editions of the Festival."

The Venice Film Festival will take place from August 30 - September 9, 2006.


Stars from 'Potter' to Appear on London's West End

Dan RadcliffeYesterday we learned that Harry Potter stars Daniel Radcliffe and Richard Griffiths (Vernon Dursley) are scheduled to appear in a production of Equus on London’s West End next spring. Rehearsals will start in January and the play will be directed by Thea Sharrock.

Dan had this to say on his new role:

I'm really excited to be part of this production. I'm thrilled to be working with Richard Griffiths again. This is obviously a huge departure for me as an actor, but Equus is such an amazing play that this really was an opportunity not to be missed.

Rehearsal starts in January and I'm very much looking forward to working with Thea Sharrock who is an incredibly talented Director and only hope I do the role justice!

Dan will play the lead character, Alan Strang, while Mr. Griffiths, fresh from his award winning role in The History Boys on Broadway will portray psychiatrist, Martin Dysart.

Previous actors to portray these characters on the stage included Peter Firth and Tom Hulce as Alan and Anthony Hopkins, Anthony Perkins and Richard Burton as psychiatrist Martin Dysart. The play received a Tony Award in 1975 for best play.

Additionally, the play will be in rehearsals for six weeks in London starting in January and will probably open in March.

No ticket information is currently available but as soon as we know any information we will be sure to let all you know.


Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Potter Merchandise License Moves to NECA

Warner Bros. Consumer Products will transfer Harry Potter master toy merchandising rights, which include gift and specialty product rights, to National Entertainment Collectibles Association, beginning in 2007. Those rights are currently held by Mattel, who will continue to produce the Harry Potter version of its Scene It? game after its contract expires, but will no longer produce other Potter-themed merchandise.

The new NECA merchandise, which will include "collectible action figures, plush, mugs, wall décor and other to-be-announced categories," is intended to reach retail outlets in time for the July 2007 release of Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix.


Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Reader Report Quantifies Potter's Impact on Kids, Parents, Reading

American publishers of the Harry Potter books, Scholastic, has published results of a study today that shows that the Harry Potter series has a positive impact on kids' reading and their school work, particularly among boys.

“While the overwhelming success of Harry Potter is undeniable, this study quantifies for the first time the impact children and parents believe the series has had on helping kids to read and learn and indicates that the right book can even lure older kids to stay engaged with reading” stated Dr. Hal Quinley from Yankelovich. “The Harry Potter series is exactly the kind of book that helps parents and kids stay connected and enjoy reading together.”

The Kids and Family Reading Report, released by Yankelovich, a consumer trends and tracking company, has quantified for the first time the impact Harry Potter has had on kids' reading attitudes and behaviors, according to a release. More than 50 percent of Harry Potter readers ages 5-17 say that they didn't read for fun before HP, and 65 percent say they have been doing better in school since starting to read the series. Furthermore, 89 percent of parents say that reading HP has helped their child enjoy reading, and 76 percent say reading HP has helped their child do better in school.

The study also shows that more boys than girls have read Harry Potter, and a larger number of boys than girls didn't read for fun before HP. While 63 percent of boys say it was important to read HP to fit in with their friends, only 44 percent of girls said the same.

Nearly 60 percent of kids aged 9-11 have read the books, and 70 percent say they are interested in reading or re-reading them, while 63 percent of kids ages 12-14 have read the books and 69 percent are interested in reading or re-reading them.

When the Harry Potter books are finished, said half of the survey's respondents, kids will be on the lookout for a new series. One in three will re-read. Aboout 27 percent will look for JKR's next book.

“Only once in a lifetime does a children’s literary phenomenon like Harry Potter come along,” stated Lisa Holton, President, Scholastic Book Fairs and Trade Publishing. “Harry Potter has become part of our culture, and what it has done so magically is to prove that even in the digital age, well-written books are and will remain a great source of enjoyment and enrichment for adult and young readers.”


Monday, July 24, 2006

USA Today Talks HBP Paperback, Book Seven

USA Today has a new article about the release of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in paperback, which comes out tomorrow. In addition to the anticipation by booksellers of brisk sales of the book ("It is going to be crazy," says one seller), the paper also mentions the Scholastic sponsored "Harry Potter Book Experts Tour." This tour features our own Melissa Anelli, along with Emerson from MuggleNet and Scholastic/Arthur A Levine Book editor Cheryl Klein, who are taping podcasts at their stops; the first of the podcasts will be available on Wednesday on the Scholastic website via this link. Their next podcast will be Tuesday at the Barnes & Noble in Summerlin, not far from the site of Lumos.

At the end of the article there is a new quote from Bloomsbury about the status on Book Seven. Quotage:"Here's the cryptic word from UK publisher Bloomsbury: "We won't know when we are publishing the seventh book until the manuscript is delivered," Lucy Holden says."


Yates says Centaurs in Phoenix "are Wonderful"

OotP Promo PosterThere is some additional information online tonight about the videotaped message from David Yates and Dan Radcliffe promoting Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix that was played at Comic-Con over the weekend. In addition to the photo and reports from earlier, Movie Web now has some additional quotes from this video, where David Yates mentions the Centaurs.

"David pointed out in this film, "Harry is in a battle for his life and soul. There's a wonderful battle scene at the end for his life; it's absolutely amazing."

Daniel talked about working on this film, "It's fantastic; it's such a blast being on set." David gave out some info about Professor Umbridge, played by Imelda Staunton. "She's a cross between Doris Day and Freddy Krueger," he said. They're also going to add some new creatures for this fifth version of the Harry Potter series; "We're also bringing in these half-men/half-horse characters to the mix, that are wonderful."

Also, thanks to MuggleNet, you can now see some photos of the Harry Potter film props that were on display at Comic-Con. Thanks Raquel!


Saturday, July 08, 2006

Hogwarts Express Transports Muggles

The Hogwarts Express steam engine was called into service for Muggle transportation yesterday in Scotland. The train took over the summer steam service between Fort William and Mallaig because the regular engine for that route had broken down. The locomotive will also be used today as part of a nine-day "Pottermania" tour, chartered by an American tour company. The tour group, which consists of 190 fans from the U.S., Canada, Brazil and Chile, has already toured Glencoe, the setting for many of the scenes from Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. After today's ride on the Hogwarts Express, the group is set to visit Alnwick Castle (Hogwarts) in Northumberland tomorrow, where they will play Quidditch -- without brooms.


Director M.Night Shyamalan in Sight to Direct HBP?

HBP US Book CoverComing Soon has posted a new interview with film director M. Night Shyamalan, where he comments on whether he has been approached to direct either Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, or the yet as un-named film version of Book Seven. He says he was asked about directing Sorcerer's Stone, and still is uncertain if he would undertake such a big project as directing a Harry Potter film. Quotage:

"You know, that Harry Potter dance has gone on a long time," he told us. "The problem is that it is a living breathing thing now, all by itself. When it comes over to my camp, it needs to be kind of handed over, adoption papers and everything. That's a tricky move.

"I haven't met with J.K. [Rowling]," he continued. "The first one was offered to me, but that conflicted with 'Unbreakable,' which was unfortunate. I would definitely, but I think probably before that I would adapt a book. I've gotten close a few times to adapting books."

M.Night Shyamalan is best known for directing such hit films as The Sixth Sense, Signs, and The Village. His latest film Lady in the Water is due to be released July 21.


Friday, July 07, 2006

Alan Rickman to Join Celebrity READ Campaign

Alan RickmanAlan Rickman (Professor Snape) will appear on a poster for the American Library Association's "Celebrity READ" program. The READ campaign to encourage children to read was initiated in 1985 with a poster of Bill Cosby holding his favorite book, Treasure Island. That poster was succeeded by hundreds of others, featuring film, music and sports stars who promote reading by posing with a book of their own choosing. Mr. Rickman's poster will be released in August. We have no word as to which book he has chosen, but we will keep you posted.


Better Photo of Harry and OotP Promo Poster

OotP Promo PosterA few weeks ago we told you about a photo seen at the New York Licensing Show promoting the upcoming Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix film. A much better photo of this OotP promotion has surfaced on a blog for the upcoming Comic-Con in San Diego. You can see this new photo here. Readers will remember as well that TLC first told you last month about a special video featuring Phoenix producer David Heyman, along with Dan Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint that would be played at Comic-Con. While we do not know if they will show this same OotP promo poster again in San Diego, we do not believe they will be debuting any footage from the upcoming film in this special video message. If you are going to be attending Comic-Con, please send in any reports, videos or photos! Comic-Con International runs July 20-23 in San Diego, California.


New Photos of David Thewlis

David ThewlisActor David Thewlis was a guest at the Prince's Trust Summer Ball last night in London, and we now have some new photos of him from this event in our galleries. The Prince's Trust Summer Ball in Berkeley Square is a charity gala where proceeds go to help " young people who have struggled at school, have been in care, are long-term unemployed or have been in trouble with the law." David will be seen again in the role of Remus Lupin in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, which resumes filming in a few weeks.


Thursday, July 06, 2006

Official Scholastic Harry Potter Tour/Podcast Dates

The separate bookstore sites have been advertising them, but here they are in one place: This July, I for Leaky, Emerson for MuggleNet and Cheryl Klein, editor at Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic books, will visit bookstores in three states to talk about the Harry Potter series and what's left for our hero. The live events will also become a podcast, and more information about that is forthcoming. But for now here are the dates so you can consider coming; we'd love to see you!

July 20, 7 p.m. - Anderson's 123 West Jefferson, Naperville, IL

July 25, 7 p.m. - Barnes & Noble 8915 W. Charleston (within walking distance from the Lumos site)Las Vegas, NV

July 30, 1 p.m. - Barnes & Noble189 Grove DriveLos Angeles, CA

We hope to see you there! More info and links soon.


Scholastic Begins Twenty Day Countdown to HBP Paperback

Scholastic, the US publishers of the Harry Potter books, has now launched their twenty day countdown to the release of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince in paperback. Each day until July 25, there will be a new question about the books; the first one here. Then, the last question will be a special Scholastic audio podcast, which will feature our own Melissa Anelli, Emerson Spartz from MuggleNet, and Scholastic Harry Potter book editor Cheryl Klein. It will be followed by a podcast from Las Vegas, held at the Barnes & Noble in Summerlin on July 25 at 7pm, so be sure to stop by and enjoy the show! More info about this podcast is forthcoming soon.

While at the Scholastic site, check out their entire Half-Blood Prince
section, which include new downloads and other fun activities, as well as the video of Jo reading from HBP last July at the release.


Director David Yates Nominated for Emmy Award

David YatesNew Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix director David Yates has been nominated for an Emmy Award for his work on "The Girl in the Cafe." David was nominated as "Best Director " for his work on the film, which is currently airing here in the States on HBO. You can see recent photos of David, and read a new interview with him at this link. The film also received several other technical award nominations, as well as a nod for "Outstanding Made for Television Movie." The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences will present the Emmy Awards on Sunday, August 27 in Los Angeles, CA and will be broadcast on NBC at 8pm ET. Congratulations David!


JKR "Thrilled" with Honor from Aberdeen University

J.K. RowlingHarry Potter author JK Rowling was honored today by Aberdeen University for her work with multiple sclerosis research. Ms. Rowling received a Doctor of Laws from the University and when asked what the degree meant to her, JK said: "I am thrilled... it is very exciting."

Prof. Neva Haites, head of the university's College of Life Sciences and Medicine told the graduating class:

JK Rowling is best known because of a book that she wrote in a cafe in Edinburgh which has made her a household name.

Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone and the subsequent Harry Potter books have now been read by millions worldwide. However, what is less well known is Ms Rowling's significant contribution to many charitable causes.

She (Rowling) is an example of a Scottish leader who has used her reputation and wealth to support the battle for improving human health and for fighting human disease.

For this and her many contributions to society, I have the honour to recommend JK Rowling to you for the degree.

You can view some pictures of the event


Wednesday, July 05, 2006

New Phoenix Photos; Filming to Resume with Dursleys Filming

OotP Promo ImageWhen filming resumes on Order of the Phoenix - on a hiatus for exam season - later this month, it will include filming of the scenes at 4 Privet Drive, sources have told Leaky.

Meanwhile, our friends at MuggleNet have received some new photos from the location preparation for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. The six photos include images of Hagrid's hut, Privet Drive and the Hogwarts Express.


Tuesday, July 04, 2006

New Privet Drive Set Photos from OotP

OotP Promo ImageThanks to HarryPotterDeluxe.com we now have a few new set photos from the upcoming Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix movie. According to a translation of the post, these were taken recently at Leavesden Studios in London, and appear to be of Privet Drive. While we can not confirm what these facades are intended for, these most likely will be used in filming scenes involving the Dementor Attack and more on Privet Drive. Readers will remember too, that actor Richard Griffiths (Uncle Vernon) said recently he is taking a break from his current play on Broadway to "honor a film commitment" starting July 18-23. Thanks to HarryPotterDeluxe and all who let us know!


Monday, July 03, 2006

Wyrd Sisters to Appeal Court Ruling

On Saturday we reported that a Canadian court ordered The Wyrd Sisters band to pay back WB's legal fees incurred while fighting the band's original court case. Today, the band says they are appealing the court's decision and will continue to push their $40 million dollar lawsuit against Warner Bros.A spokesperson from WB says they are "extremely hopeful that we will continue to prevail in this case."


Harry and Jo featured on Cartoon Clicks

Every Monday, CNN.com's Politics section features a humorous comic in response to big events of the past week. Harry and Jo were the introduction to this week's Cartoon Clicks, and you can see the funny sketch right here. Thanks to Lynne for the tip!


Saturday, July 01, 2006

Georgia Board of Education to Review Potter Case

As we have reported, the Georgia woman who failed in her attempt to have the Harry Potter books removed from public school shelves has filed an appeal. Now, the Georgia State Board of Education has decided to hold a public hearing on October 3, 2006 to review the matter. The initial complaint filed by Laura Mallory contends the books "promote and glorify withcraft." But the Gwinnet County Board of Education voted unanimously to keep the books in public school libraries there, saying that they "promote critical thinking skills and imagination."


Canadian Wyrd Sisters Ordered to Pay WB $140,000

Winnipeg, Canada-based folk band Wyrd Sisters has been ordered to pay Warner Bros. $140,000 in legal costs stemming from the group's 2005 lawsuit aimed at preventing the release of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire because the movie contained a pretend band of similar name.

HPANA has learned through a confidential source involved with the case that Jarvis Cocker (the real-life musician who was the lead singer of Potter's "Weird Sisters") desired to release an entire album of songs with different collaborators, including Franz Ferdinand, Jack White and Iggy Pop. (The band Franz Ferdinand was once rumored to be the movie-version Weird Sisters.)

Cocker also planned music videos and singles, all of which had to be pulled due to the lawsuit. The whole debacle created so much tension that Cocker was escorted down the red carpet premiere in London to avoid reporters' questions on the subject.

(On a semi-related note, this great interview with Daniel Radcliffe may have been missed in the hooplah surrounding Goblet of Fire's release in November 2005. It's all about Dan's musical tastes and mentions both Cocker and Franz Ferdinand.)