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

Friday, August 27, 2010

New Images, Video, Interview from A/W 2010 People Tree Collection Endorsed by Emma Watson

The People Tree website has been updated with new material from the Autumn/Winter 2010 collection endorsed by Emma Watson (Hermione Granger). The update include a number of new images, which can now be found here in our image galleries, an interview, a note from Emma and a video clip, which you can see here.

The actress writes of her visit to Bangladesh to better understand the impact of Fair Trade:

I still find it hard to convey what Fair Trade means to those producing our fashion - it's just so impressive to see how the women have used Fair Trade clothing to escape poverty and empower themselves and their children. I was very moved and inspired.

Watson also explains that she was not "centrally involved" in the design of the Autumn/Winter 2010 collection but helped in the selection of a number of Fair Trade textiles featuring in the new fashion line. When interviewed, Emma spoke briefly about the processes involved in handmaking garments:

I always find it difficult to impress on people what 'handmade' really means. To make a simple garment they have to produce the yarn, hand-dye the yarn, get it onto the loom, then weave the fabric, cut it to the pattern, sew it into the garment and then embroider it - all by hand. It is so hard for people to imagine what it takes to create something and how special that item of clothing is.

Emma later continues:

I've been given a lot in my life and I have had so many fantastic opportunities. It's really important to me that I try to give something back. I wanted to find the right thing and working with People Tree is so special and rewarding and the best way I can do that at the moment. I really believe in Fair Trade and I just want to see more of it in the world. I need to know there are more places like Swallows.

You can find the full interview on the newly updated website at this link.

Three New Images From "Deathly Hallows" Released

Thanks to ScarPotter we have three new images from "Deathly Hallows: Part 1":

Harry, Ron, and Hermione in Grimmauld Place

Ron and Hermione in the tent

Hermione wearing Slytherin's locket

"Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" will be in theatres November 19th.

Two More Pictures From "Deathly Hallows" Now Online

In addition to the three images from "Deathly Hallows" released earlier today, we now have two more pictures from the upcoming film:

Harry with stubble

Ron in the tent


Thursday, August 26, 2010

More Voices Confirmed for Upcoming EA "Deathly Hallows" Video Game

More voices have been confirmed for the Entertainment Arts and Warner Bros. "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" video game. An update to the video game's official website announces that Alfie Enoch (Dean Thomas), Warwick Davis (Professor Flitwick, Griphook), Toby Jones (voice of Dobby) and Simon McBurney (voice of Kreacher) will also be providing voices for the game.

Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley), James and Oliver Phelps (Fred and George Weasley, respectively), Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy), David Legeno (Fenrir Greyback) and Evanna Lynch (Luna Lovegood) are among the many names who have already been announced as providing voices for the video game.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Full "Deathly Hallows" Test Screening Report, PotterCast Test Screening Preview Online

Here now, is the full, in-depth review of this working cut of the film. Again, a warning to readers: this post will contain explicit spoilers for the first part of the "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" film.

Also, check out the latest episode of PotterCast here for a quick rundown of some main moments in the "Deathly Hallows: Part 1" film. A live Q&A PotterCast recording will take place sometime this week! Stay tuned to Pottercast.com for recording dates and times. Also, if you were in attendance at the screening, please do email us at staff@leakynews.com with your thoughts on the film! Enjoy!


Yesterday, I was fortunate enough to be among about 500 fellow moviegoers at a test screening of the first part of "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" film. This event traditionally happens in Chicago about three months prior to the release of the film; it was by a bit of luck and some very good friends that I was able to attend. On hand at the screening were director David Yates, WB President and COO Alan Horn, and producers David Heyman and David Barron, who observed a focus group of select moviegoers following the movie. The film itself, which ran approximately two and a half hours, was a working cut, which meant that some special effects, such as CGI, were not yet complete. We would also be watching the film with a temporary soundtrack of music and scores from various other films. This, however, did not diminish the power or enjoyment of the film in the slightest. Knowing they have yet to add Desplat's score to the picture only builds anticipation for how spectacular the finish product will be.

While some parts of the story told in the book were cut from the film or condensed, the main essence of the story remains. The film was paced perfectly, and balanced the action of fighting a war with the human and emotional toll of the journey very well. The look of the film stayed inline with the dark, gloomy, despairing colors of grey and black which were seen in "Half-Blood Prince." It is clear that danger is in the air at every turn. The human emotional and physical toll also comes across in each scene. Wide sweeping shots of the expanse before them show just how alone the Trio are on the road.

The actors, particularly the Trio, give their best performances to date; practically disappearing into their characters. Jason Isaacs brings the character of Lucius Malfoy to new levels as an unshaven, groveling creature before Voldemort, while Rhys Ifans plays the desperate father who will do anything to get his child back to a tee. Bellatrix Lestrange plays a more prominent role in this film than in the past, which allows actress Helena Bonham Carter to show the sadistic and frantic side of Bella even more. We do see Dobby again, who makes his return at Grimmauld Place helping Kreacher bring Mundungus to Harry for questioning. The next time we see him, he appears in the cellar of Malfoy Manor to rescue Harry and his friends.

The film begins with the eyes of Rufus Scrimgeour speaking to the wizarding press about his government's pledge to protect the liberty of its citizens during this dark time. This leads into a sequence which shows Harry, Ron, and Hermione at their respective homes, preparing for the journey ahead. Harry watches the Dursley's go, Ron and the Weasley's prepare themselves emotionally for the coming months, and Hermione performs the obliviate spell on her parents. In a very sad realization for both Hermione and the audience as photos of the family on the walls and mantelpieces are wiped of Hermione's presence as the spell takes effect. She then walks from their house and down the empty street away from the former home of Wendel and Monica Wilkins.

We are then transported to Malfoy Manor, where Snape walks through the iron gates of the towering estate and through the house to the Death Eater meeting. Charity Burbage's tortured body looms over the Death Eaters throughout the scene, which adds an extra level of creepy to the whole scene. As I said above, Isaacs gives a stunning performance which plays so well with Fiennes, who lets Voldemort toy with Malfoy, snapping the silver handle off Malfoy's wand and throwing the broken piece on the table. Throughout the film, a series of dreams/visions/memories tell the history of the horcruxes (the ones that we know of) and of Voldemort discovering the Elder Wand. Flashes of the previous films, including Dumbledore falling from the Astronomy Tower and Tom Riddle give us this background, while we get our history of Grindelwald and Gregorovich from Harry's link to Voldemort's mind.

The Seven Potters scene was nearly complete in this cut. The transformation takes place in a single 360 degree camera shot, with each character transforming into Harry in their own unique way. Fred and George shrink about a foot, Mundungus grows about a foot, and Fleur gets Harry's eyebrows as the first thing on her body to change. When the Seven Potters are waking around the room in their original character's clothes, they are distinguished by their original voices and mannerisms. They then strip to change into Harry's outfit. The production went all out here- even having Fluer's Harry take off a white, lacy bra in order to change clothes. Once in the air, we see the Death Eaters dive on the Order like bats, swooping in casting spells and curses. Death Eaters take Harry and Hagrid on a chase down the highway, diving in between cars, and even doing a flip around a tunnel ceiling.

As for Hedwig: she does die. In a change from the book, Harry lets Hedwig fly away before the Order leaves the Privet Drive. During the battle, right before Voldemort appears, she flies back on the scene in an effort to help Harry fight the Death Eaters. A Death Eater casts the Avada Kedavra curse on her, and she falls to the ground. It is Hedwig's appearance alongside the real Harry that clues Voldemort into his identity.

At the fully reconstructed Weasley House, Scrimgeour arrives before the wedding to read the will of Albus Dumbledore and hand out the three bequeaths. Ginny and Harry share their only kiss in this part of the film here, which is interrupted in a hilarious way by the bandaged-ear George. (Yes, the 'Saintly' joke remains verbatim in the film.) Harry begins to become uncertain that he knew Dumbledore, with the help of Auntie Muriel and flashes of newspaper headlines about Rita Skeeter's upcoming book, The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore. Then, Kingsley's patronus appears, announcing Scrimgeour's death and the fall of the Ministry. The Trio make their escape, this time with the aid of a strong-looking Lupin urging Harry to "GO!" and battle Death Eaters Rowle and Dolohov in the cafe once they reach London.

Once at Grimmauld Place, Harry sends Kreacher off to find Mundungus, who returns with both Dung and Dobby. The crowd cheered when Dobby appeared on screen, and was further endeared at the elf when he and Krecher vie for Harry's attention. Mundungs' information leads them to infiltrate the Ministry, which also is presented just as it was in the books. Umbridge, portrayed by Imelda Staunton, gets to recapture her former sinister self presiding over a courtroom with a swirl of Dememntors revolving overhead. The Ministry now seems to be operation to create forms of propaganda against Muggles, which are being produced in mass quantities (When Muggles Attack). They've also replaced the former statue in the atrium with a new totalitarian-themed creation, which is made up of jumble of twisted Muggles holding up wizards on a pedestal. "Muggles in their rightful place," says Hermione."

Umbridge's office at the Ministry is filled with ornate gold carvings on the walls, along with the pink brick and purring cat plates. Mad-Eye's eye is seen in the door of her office, but it was not clear whether Harry takes it for or not. Upon escaping from the courtroom and stunning Umbrdige, they are chased through the Ministry and end up disapparating to the forest. Here we see a great performance by Emma Watson as Hermione who sobs over Ron's body as she mends his splinched arm. Bone and muscle in his arm are exposed before the dittany is applied. She then casts the appropriate concealment charms over the Trio and their life in the forest begins.

The first part of the "Deathly Hallows" films flows seamlessly and quickly through the story. No particular part moves too slow or too fast, but the greatly condensed 'camping' sequence does take its time; but, with good reason. This part of the film shows the progression of Ron's jealousy of Harry and Hermione's friendship, spurred on by wearing the Horcrux. Rupert Grint plays this very well, storming out of the tent and into the winter, leaving Harry and Hermione unsure of how to go on. Following his exit, a scene not in the books remains one of the most touching and poignant: In an effort to cheer up a sullen Hermione, Harry removes the Horcrux from his neck, and shares an awkward high school prom-style dance with Hermione to the Nick Cave song, "O'Children."

Harry and Hermione make their way to Godric's Hollow and come across the grave site of the Potters. The memorial statue at the house or in the square is not seen in this film, but Harry discovering their resting place remains an emotional experience. At Bathilda's, Hermione discovers the bloody cupboard where she was killed while Harry turns to see Nagini coming out of Bathilda's mouth, leaving what remains of her body and clothes in a pile on the floor. This particular shot was not complete in the film, for it was among the CGI effects yet to be finished. The fight with Nagini spills over into a children's room in the house next door, and leaves Harry bitten by the snake. Once they make their escape to the Forest of Dean, Harry lays unconscious for a few days, during which time he finds his way into Voldemort's mind and we discover more back story about Grindelwald and Gregorovich.

This leads into, perhaps, the most thrilling and emotional part of the film: the Silver Doe. Rupert Grint's performance is spectacular as he makes his return, pulling Harry from underneath the icy depths and destroying the Horcrux. After Harry opens the locket, a tornado of Voldemort's dark soul rises above Ron, unleashing spiders on the ground and taunting him. In a very sensual turn, silvery porcelain visions of Riddle-Harry and Riddle-Hermione appear in the tornado and taunt Ron's jealousy by sharing a long and intense kiss. In an effort not to truly represent the evil of Voldemort and the situation, the Riddle-Harry and Riddle-Hermione, in the swirling mass of the tornado, appear topless during the final seconds of their kiss before Ron swings Gryffindor's sword down on the locket, destroying it.

This intense sequence is followed by the reunited Trio seeking out more information from Xenophilius Lovegood about the strange symbol he wore at the wedding. In a truly spectacular animation, the story of The Three Brothers is told in a completely unique style where the characters of Death and the brothers transform from shrouded skeletons to semi-formed puppets to, finally, puppet like mannequins as they relate the tale. Hermione's voice reading the tale accompanies the animation, which lasts nearly three minutes. In my opinion, it is truly one of the best three minutes these films have produced. Xeno's broken state of mind is played beautifully by Rhys Ifans. The Death Eaters are called to the tree stump-shaped house by Xeno who says Voldemort's name, which is now tabooed. The Trio escapes briefly, but run into a gang of Snatchers, who chase them down in the forest. During this time, Harry also drifts into one final connection with Voldemort which shows the Dark Lord questioning an aged Grindelwald, who tells him the Elder Wand remains with Dumbledore in his grave.

The Malfoy Manor scene saw a few changes from what was in the book, none of which greatly altered the outcome of the story as it has been told in the films. For instance, Wormtail does not definitively die in the film. Rather, he is stunned by Dobby which allows for Harry and Ron to escape. Wormtail aside, Emma Watson's shrieking as Bella's character tortures her own (Bellatrix brands "mudblood" onto Hermione's arm) still gives me chills. Bellatrix continues to be in top form when she uses her wand as a whip to take the sword from the low-rank Snatchers who captured the Trio. The Malfoy's also get to show their complete desperation, with Lucius, drink in hand, talking a defeated Draco into identify Harry. Throughout this sequence the suspense builds until that final moment when the dagger is thrown by Bella and disapparates along with Harry, Ron, Hermione, and Dobby to Shell Cottage.

Hands down, one of the most emotional sequences of this film was Dobby dying in Harry's arms on she shores of Shell Cottage. The burial of Dobby takes place on a bluff overlooking the sea. Harry digs the grave himself, and places the small House Elf in his resting place with Ron and Hermione. The final scene in the movie takes place at Hogwarts, on a small island just off the banks of the lake. Dumbledore's tomb is cracked open by Voldemort, who looks into the blank face of Dumbledore before taking the wand from his grasp and firing a lightning bolt into the air.

After the film, I had the opportunity to speak briefly with Yates and Barron, who told me that Voldemort taking possession of the Elder Wand will indeed be where the first part ends, and that Desplat is currently finishing the score for the film. They went on to say they have not yet decided on a composer for the second part of the "Deathly Hallows" film, but they are starting the process of putting the final film together.


Monday, August 16, 2010

Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey Reaches One Million Riders!

Universal Orlando has released a new video announcing that the Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey ride at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme park has seen one million riders "in record time".

Though they don't specify what the record time is - or was - we know that the park has only been officially open for two months. Divide 1 million by 60 days, and that averages 16,666 riders a day. An impressive number, no doubt!

Thanks to our Hogwarts mate Sylvia for giving me the heads up on this story.


Friday, August 13, 2010

It Will Rain November 11th in London; Deathly Hallows World Premiere Date Set

Numerous readers have pointed out that the launch of the "Join The Final Battle" campaign has revealed the date for the UK premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

The premiere is set for Thursday, November 11th in London. We expect it to be held at Leicester Square. We also expect it to rain very heavily (as it has done for the several of the UK premieres).

With that date now known, we will predict that the US premiere will be held the following Monday or Tuesday. No word yet on whether it'll be in Los Angeles or New York City, but our money is on the latter.

Our Deathly Hallows section has been updated with a Premieres page to keep track of the latest details.


Thursday, August 12, 2010

"Deathly Hallows" Film Split Revealed; Images of Xeno, Scrimgeour, Bagshot, and Gregorovitch Online (Update)

The latest issue of Entertainment Weekly features a cover story on the upcoming "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" film, which, at long last, reveals the split for the final installments of the film. High Res scans of the entire EW feature can be found right here thanks to RupertGrint.net. The report features a number interviews with the cast and never before published information about the film. A caution now to readers, for the rest of this post will contain SPOILERS!

Photos from the multipage feature show photographs of Hagrid and Harry on Sirius' motorbike, Xeno Lovegood in front of his house, Harry reaching for his wand, Ron and Harry sneaking into the Ministry, the Death Eaters before Voldemort, Harry sending off Hedwig, Harry and Hermione in the forest, and many more. We also get our first true looks at Xenophilius, Runcorn, Scrimgeour, Bagshot, and Gregorovitch.

The film, EW reports, "will end at about Chapter 24 of the book, with Voldemort gaining possession of the Elder Wand, one of the three Deathly Hallows that allow the bearer to conquer death." The article goes on to feature quotes from many of the cast members and director David Yates, who speak in turn about bringing the conclusion of the Potter series to the big screen. They also reveal details about the film; including the final scene the Trio ever filmed together. Quoteage:

The three of them [Radcliffe, Watson, and Grint] are shooting a scene in the Room of Requirement in which Harry, Ron, and Hermione are searching for a Horcrux- in this case, a tiara-like Ravenclaw diadem. Watson and Grint are sopping wet. (In the film, Ron and Hermione have recently destroyed another horcrux in the water and were perused by a Voldemort-shaped tsunami.)

As production on the two films wound down this summer, the three stars faced the prospect of having to film their final scene together. "It was bizarre," Watson said last week by phone. "Walking on to set that day, there was this incredibly thick atmosphere. It felt like a moment in history. It felt really big." In the scene, Harry, Ron, and Hermione have broken into the Ministry of Magic. They jinx a woman and drag her into a tiny storage area. So the final frame ever shot of all three actors takes place in a cramped little room. "These characters have been in the most fantaistical situations at Hogwarts- they've been in the Dark Forest, all these extraordinary places," says Yates. "It was an odd way to finish, really." But poetic, perhaps, considering that the whole series began with a boy who lived in a tiny room under the stairs of a house on Privet Drive. "In a way," says Yates, "the series started with a cupboard and ended with one."

The full article can be read right here. "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" will be in theaters on November 19, while "Deathly Hallows: Part 2" will arrive on the big screen July 2011. The Fall Movie Preview issue of EW is on newsstands now.

Update: We now have this new photo of Dan Radcliffe as Harry Potter in formal wizard wear brandishing his wand.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Emma Watson Launches Join The Final Battle Deathly Hallows Campaign for UK Fans

With 100 days left until the release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 1, Warner Brothers UK today kicked off a "Join The Final Battle" campaign on Facebook where fans have a chance to win tickets to the World Premiere of the film in London this November.

The launch of the campaign also includes a special message from Emma Watson (sporting her new hairstyle), who talks about how the contest works.

Full details can be found right here on their Facebook page.

Please note that the contest and campaign are only available for UK and Ireland fans. At this time, we do not know if Warner Brothers US will be launching anything today (but as always, we'll keep you updated).


Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Confirmed: Seattle Next and Final Stop for Harry Potter: The Exhibition (Updated)

Harry Potter The Exhibition LogoIn a followup this evening to yesterday's post, Warner Bros. have issued a press release confirming that Seattle's Pacific Science Centre will be the final host for Harry Potter: The Exhibition. The exhibition will open on the 23rd of October, 2010 until the 30th of January, 2011 in Seattle, the only West Coast venue for the travelling exhibit. The press release reports that Matthew Lewis (Neville Longbottom) "was on hand today at the Pacific Science Centre to kick off the announcement."

Update: Photos of Lewis at the announcement in Seattle today can now be seen here in our galleries.

Tickets will go on sale to the general public via the Pacific Science Centre website or by telephoning (206) 443-2001 from this Saturday, 14th of August at 9am; Pacific Science Centre museum members can take part in a special pre-sale starting today, 10th August until 9am on Saturday, 14th of August:

General public admission to Harry Potter: The Exhibition is $26 for adults; $24 for seniors (65 and over) and youth (6-15); $17 for children (ages 3-5) and includes admission to all of Pacific Science Center’s exhibits.
The press release additionally briefly mentions the presence of new items from "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" at the exhibition, as well as the showing of the forthcoming film in IMAX 3D at the Pacific Science Centre's Boeing IMAX Theatre from the 19th of November, 2010:
In partnership with Warner Bros. Consumer Products, Global Experience Specialists, Inc. (GES) created the 10,000-square-foot experiential exhibition, which features hundreds of artifacts and costumes from all of the Harry Potter films, including new items from the highly-anticipated, two-part finale to the series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. To add to the excitement, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1 will be presented in IMAX® 3D at Pacific Science Center’s Boeing IMAX Theater when the film opens on November 19, 2010.

Monday, August 09, 2010

EA Games Release New "Deathly Hallows" Video Game Wallpaper

EA Games has released a new "Deathly Hallows" wallpaper on the official Electronic Arts website for the "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" video game. The wallpaper, which you can find here in our galleries, features an unidentified Death Eater casting a spell on a broomstick.

As we previously told you, the website also features extras such as a seven minute video podcast with the game's producer, Darren Potter and a further two wallpapers for download, which you can also find at this link in our galleries.

You can access the official EA website for the "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" video game via this link. The "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" video game from EA will be compatible with the PlayStation 3, Xbox 360, Wii, Nintendo DS, Windows PC and mobile devices. The game is due to be released in the UK, India, France and Australia on the 19th of November, 2010.


Sunday, August 08, 2010

New Tonks and Lupin "Deathly Hallows" Promo Photo

The Harry Potter Wall Art website has been updated with a brand new photo of Natalia Tena and David Thewlis as Nymphadora Tonks and Professor Remus Lupin, respectively. The posed image, titled "Nymphadora Tonks and Professor Lupin Waist Shot," features the actors in formal dress.

You can have find the image here in our galleries.


Thursday, August 05, 2010

Emma Watson: New Pixie Haircut Was "The Most Liberating Thing"

Emma Watson (Hermione Granger) described her recent short pixie haircut as "the most liberating thing!" to Entertainment Weekly. “The stylist just grabbed the back of my hair and took a whole ponytail of hair out. It felt amazing,” continued the actress, also commenting that she "missed all that experimentation that most teenagers go through." For continuity purposes in her role as Hermione Granger, Watson had to keep her hair in the same style for a decade whilst she worked on the Harry Potter films.

Watson further remarks that she has wanted to cut her hair since the age of "about 16 so as soon as I had the chance I was like, 'Right. This is it.'" The short EW.com article features a Polaroid of Watson's new hair from Entertainment Weekly's upcoming Fall Movie Preview issue. You can find this new picture in our galleries via this link.

In related news, Emma Watson updated her new Facebook page and Twitter account to comment further on the haircut, once again describing it as liberating. On Facebook, Watson wrote:

Dear all. Cut my hair off a few days ago... Feels incredible. I love it. I've wanted to do this for years and years; it's the most liberating thing ever. Hope you like. Big love from Emma x

A new black and white photo of Watson sporting her new look has been uploaded to the Facebook page and can be seen in our galleries at this link.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

New Promo Picture for 'Deathly Hallows' Surfaces Online

A brand new promotional image of Harry with his wand alight in Grimmauld Place has surfaced in the foreign publication, Gallimard.

To see the full size image, click here