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

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

'Harry Potter' Cast On An Emotional Roller Coaster: Films End, Park Opens

Last week was one of the most emotionally tumultuous times for the British cast and crew who have been working for more than a decade on the Harry Potter films. Over the course of just a few days, they experienced a dramatic culmination and an exuberant beginning.

Director David Yates shot the final frames of the eight-part series June 12, and four days later, a group of cast members and production folks boarded a flight to Florida for the grand opening of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter attraction at Universal's Islands of Adventure in Orlando.

The series of movies, based on the massively popular seven novels by J.K. Rowling, began filming in 2000, and the moviemakers have just called it a wrap. The movie adaptation of the seventh and final book, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, will hit theaters in two parts, the first opening in November.

When shooting came to an end, "a few tears were shed," says producer David Heyman, who has been associated with the films since obtaining the rights to the books in 1999 and pitching the movies to Warner Bros.

"A few of us gave speeches —Daniel Radcliffe (who plays Harry), David Yates and myself," Heyman says. "It was very moving. We all talked about how it's like being part of a family. It was very intimate and lovely."

Then, about 20 key players flew to Orlando to take in the 200-acre Potter theme park. Sadness turned into awe and even elation.

"It was like a family outing coming out here," Heyman says.

Radcliffe has called the theme park "awe-inspiring." And Rupert Grint, who plays Harry's best buddy, Ron Weasley, says: "It's been quite an emotional few days. We wrapped the film on Saturday, and so to come here and see this place is amazing."

Though they had been surrounded by elaborate sets constructed with painstaking attention to detail, actors and filmmakers alike were impressed by the effort in Orlando to get Potter's magical universe just right.

"It's a completely immersive experience," Heyman says. "In a way, it feels like the film has come to life."

Visitors can walk through Hogsmeade Village, sample Bertie Bott's candy at Honeydukes, get matched up with their very own wand at Ollivander's, take a dragon challenge and a hippogriff ride, explore Hogwarts Castle and even lurk about in Professor Dumbledore's imposing office.

"There's a four-minute-long ride where you can fly by the seat of your pants," Heyman says.


Monday, June 21, 2010

Dan Radcliffe Recalls Major Deathly Hallows Scene While Touring Hogwarts

UPDATE: MTV has posted a much longer version of the interview starting at this link. Dan talks about playing Harry Potter in another form.. among other things!
MTV took a tour of Hogwarts Castle at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park at Universal Orlando with Dan Radcliffe, and during the interview Dan had this interesting bit to say about a big scene during Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows:

Radcliffe himself was flooded with memories while standing there. The room most reminded him of the end of "Chamber of Secrets," in the scene with Richard Harris' Dumbledore and Jason Isaac's Lucius Malfoy. But he also said that the office plays a part in a scene audiences have yet to see. "One of the key scenes in the series happens in this room, where towards the end of ['Deathly Hallows'], Harry learns something about Snape's past in relation to him, and that takes place in this room. In fact, actually, it takes place pretty much here," he said, motioning to where he was standing. "And that is kind of pretty much possibly the key scene in the series, you might say. There's a certain argument for that."


Sunday, June 20, 2010

Amazon Uploads Covers of "Deathly Hallows: Part 1" Video Game

Amazon.com has put up pictures of the "Deathly Hallows: Part 1" video game covers for all the platforms it will be available for. The images can be viewed on Amazon or in our Image Galleries.

The game comes out November 9th and can be pre-ordered on Amazon.


Friday, June 18, 2010

Plus-sized 'Potter' Park Passengers a Problem for 'Forbidden Journey' Ride

Are you a bit fluffy around the waist?

Don't expect to go on the signature ride at Universal Orlando Resort's new Wizarding World of Harry Potter park, (ironically) named "Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey."

While the only posted size restriction is a minimum height of 48 inches, guests greater than 260 lbs may have difficulty locking the ride's harness, especially if much of that weight is around the belly.

At a press conference during the grand opening events this week, I had the pleasure of sitting next to a reporter at Reuters who filed a report (quoting yours truly):

Jeff Guillaume of Lansing, Michigan, who in 2002 founded an early online Harry Potter news aggregator and fan site HPANA.com, said fans like him will be disappointed because of limitations on body size to ride the Forbidden Journey.

At 5 feet, 8 inches and 265 pounds (1.72 meters and 119 kg), Guillaume said his mid-section would not allow the restraint system to close, so he could not board the most heavily promoted ride.

Other rides at Universal Orlando Resort feature modified seating for larger guests, but not Forbidden Journey.


Thursday, June 17, 2010

Press Conference with HP Cast and Crew at Wizarding World Today

This morning, a series of press conferences with the cast of the Harry Potter films and the crew behind both the Wizarding World attraction and Harry Potter films will be taking place. Leaky is Live Tweeting the event right here, and will be updating this post with the latest information as it comes online. Stay tuned for photos, videos, and a first hand account of all of today's events shortly!

First, a panel with the crew behind the park and films speaks:

J. K. Rowling's involvement is, "Critical to [the] process."  Producer David Heyman adds, "She is the most generous of collaborators."

David Heyman describes the Wizarding World as "feeling like a unified space."

Alan Gilmore relates, "Something I never ever thought I would do is build a theme park."

The Three Broomsticks is "One of the most complicated buildings ever constructed in a theme park."

Stuart Craig: "Ten years ago, she gave us a map" that lays out the world.

No current plans for any expansions.

David Barron comments, "We're sitting in the legacy really.

Actors Dan Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Tom Felton, and Michael Gambon were interviewed next, and spoke about their impressions of the park, as well as the production on the films ending. On the subject of the "Deathly Hallows" film wrapping, Mr. Radcliffe commented on a short film put together by the crew of the film, showing the last sixteen months of production. His response to this film: "I don't think there is any shame in saying we all cried like babies."

Other highlights:

Rupert is most excited about the Pub, while Dan is a fan of the frozen Butterbeer, Rock Cakes, and Treacle Fudge.

Michael Gambon jokes he does not abide by the safety rules his character gives during the ride.

Gambon was scared of the Dueling Dragons ride. Knew it was a mistake as soon as he got on.

Felton and Radcliffe will return to the park if they ever feel homesick for Leavesden Studios.

Next, actors Bonnie Wright, Matt Lewis, Warwick Davis, and James and Oliver Phelps took the stage to give their impressions on the park, as well as talk a bit about wrapping the Harry Potter films.


Bonnie Wright is happy they can "give a park to the fans...to experience what we've had is amazing."

Warwick Davis sums the park up in three words: "This is magic."

James Phelps feels it is surreal you can say "I'll meet you in the Three Broomsticks for a drink."

Bonnie Wright and James Phelps comment that, unlike on set, you can take things home from here.

Cast has raided the shops at Wizarding World. Warwick Davis' hotel room looks like Ollivanders. Matt Lewis wants the Gryffindor Sword.

Matt Lewis believes the States, without its castles, is the right place for the HP theme park.

Warwick Davis says finishing Potter films felt like no other film he's done before. It was very emotional.

Check back to Leaky for complete details on the press conference, pictures, and video!


Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Wizarding World Grand Opening Celebration: Photos, Videos, Highlights and More

Tonight, Universal hosted a major event inside the theme park which featured appearances by the stars of the films, composer John Williams and author J.K. Rowling.

Dan Radcliffe (Harry), Rupert Grint (Ron), Bonnie Wright (Ginny), Tom Felton (Draco), Michael Gambon (Dumbledore), Matt Lewis (Neville), James Phelps (Fred), Oliver Phelps (George), and Warwick Davis (Flitwick, Griphook) were all in attendance. Composer John Williams performed a selection of songs at the event as well, and Warwick Davis led the Frog Choir.

REVIEW: Watch Andrew review the Celebration, Forbidden Journey, Butterbeer, and more at this link!

- Film's cast arrive
- Frog choir performs | ...with Hogwarts behind them | Video
- Hogsmeade at night
- John Williams conducts orchestra
- Hogwarts during light show, fireworks
- A snowman and Hogwarts

Fireworks behind Hogwarts
- White
- Blue and green
- Blue and red
- Purple and red
- White
- Blue lights

- 9:10 pm - Author J.K. Rowling arrives
- 9:50 pm - Warwick Davis (Prof. Flitwick) directs Frog Choir
- 10:01 pm - John Williams directs Orlando Philharmonic Orchestra
- 10:06 pm - Michael Gambon, Tom Felton, Matthew Lewis, James & Oliver Phelps and Bonnie Wright arrive via Knight Bus
- 10:08 pm - Dan Radcliffe and Rupert Grint arrive in Ford Anglia
- 10:10 pm - Dan leads crowd, stars in casting Lumos to reveal Hogwarts, set off light show and fireworks around Hogwarts Castle


Rupert Grint, James Phelps Perform at Universal's Rising Star Karaoke Club

Last night at Universal Orlando CityWalk's Rising Star karaoke club, Rupert Grint and James Phelps took the stage to sing to some fans and tourists.

The two are in Orlando for the Grand Opening of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park.  You can see video of them performing at this link!

Nice job guys!


EA Confirms 'Deathly Hallows: Part I' Video Game Release Date

EA has confirmed via their facebook page that the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 video game will have a release date of November 19.


Monday, June 14, 2010

Felton: Potter Actors Don't Know Where "Deathly Hallows" Will Split

The Press Association has some new quotes from Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy) in which the actor confirms that the Harry Potter cast are unaware of where the split will come between the last two films in the Harry Potter series.

"We don't know where the cut's going to be," says Felton, "[e]veryone keeps asking us 'where is the cut?' but they've shot it kind of all as one and I think they're going to wait and see whatever feels right."

The actor talks of the cast's relief at finding out that there would be two films for the seventh book, which Felton describes as "the most important chapter of the whole story."

Lastly, Felton also comments on the way it feels to leave Draco Malfoy behind:

I kind of use him as therapy in a way. I get to build up these angers and frustrations and then vent it through this evil little Hitler child. Without it I may have to go to therapy - maybe it's time to vent that way!

You can read the full story at this link.


Dan Radcliffe Discusses the Last Day of Filming "Deathly Hallows"

Yesterday at the Tony Awards, Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter) spoke about wrapping up the shooting of "Deathly Hallows":

"'Everyone was really devastated. It was really, really sad,' Radcliffe said Sunday. '[We] were crying quite a lot.' ...When asked how it felt to end his role as the boy wizard, Radcliffe said, 'It's a weird, weird feeling.'"

"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" will be released in theatres November 19th, 2010, and "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2" will be released July 15th, 2011.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Rupert Grint Brings Ice Cream Truck to Last Day of "Deathly Hallows" Filming

A bit more today on the final day of filming for "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" comes again from the Twitter account of actor Warwick Davis. The Professor Flitwick and Griphook actor tweeted that Rupert Grint, who portrays the character of Ron Weasley, arrived on set in his much talked about ice cream van, and served the cast and crew with frozen treats. His tweet reads:

For the last day on 'HP', Rupert 'Mr Whippy' Grint arrived in his ice cream van & served up 99s for cast & crew... It brought a smile to everyones face on what was a very emotional day. It was a thrill to see a teaser for 'Deathly Hallows' too. :)

The photo of Mr. Grint's ice cream van can be seen right here.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Tom Felton Discusses Rickman and Fiennes Performances in "Deathly Hallows"

Since finishing filming "Deathly Hallows" Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy) has spoken about acting with Ralph Fiennes (Lord Voldemort) and Alan Rickman (Professor Snape) in "Deathly Hallows":

"I've never worked with Ralph one-on-one [until recently], Alan Rickman was there and several dark presences so it was very daunting and there are some horrifically evil speeches. There's a lot to look forward to, definitely."

He goes on to speak about how he views Jason Isaacs (Lucius Malfoy) as a "father to [him] in the acting world," and he'll "definitely be keeping in touch" with Isaacs.


Today is the Final Day of Shooting for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, and Emma Watson in Harry Potter and the Deathly HallowsWe've known for a while that the final day of filming for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows would be in June. We now know that today - Saturday, June 12th - is the one.

Warwick Davis - who we recently interviewed on MuggleCast - confirmed that this final day involves a scene with Griphook. As he posted on his Twitter:

The end of an Era - today is officially the last day of principal photography on 'Harry Potter' - ever. I feel honoured to be here as the director shouts cut for the very last time. Farewell Harry & Hogwarts, it's been magic! x ...and goodbye Griphook!

Test shoots for the film began in January 2009, and regular filming started the following month.

Congratulations to Warner Brothers, David Heyman, David Yates, David Barron, JK Rowling, Stuart Craig, Steve Kloves, and the entire cast and crew!


Filming for 'Harry Potter' Wraps Today

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows LogoThe final day of principle photography for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows takes place today (June 12), according to the Twitter account of Warwick Davis (Flitwick, Griphook).

The end of an Era - today is officially the last day of principal photography on 'Harry Potter' - ever. I feel honoured to be here as the director shouts cut for the very last time. Farewell Harry & Hogwarts, it's been magic! x ...and goodbye Griphook!

This is a monumental day for all those involved in the "Harry Potter" series over the past decades, and of course the fans. Leave your comments on this important day in the Harry Potter series.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 1 is scheduled for November 19, and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2 comes out July 15, 2011.


Friday, June 11, 2010

The End of Harry Potter "Hasn't Sunk In Yet" for Tom Felton

In a recent article Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy) speaks about how though he's finished filming all the Harry Potter movies the fact that the series is over "hasn't sunk in yet" for him:

"'I was expecting this big emotional breakdown but instead the first AD (assistant director) got out the microphone and listed the names of people who it was their last day and forced the crew for a ripple of applause and then we walked off and that was it,' Tom revealed.

'The reason why it perhaps hasn't sunk in yet is because we always feel like we're going to be asked back for something or other, I'm sure it's not the last time we've seen those studios,' he laughed."

In the article Felton also speaks about the Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park and how it might help the cast's "withdrawal symptoms" in the future.