Even after the release of 7 books, 8 movies, and a two-part theater play, fans couldn’t seem to get enough of Harry Potter’s adventures. A return of this legendary saga had been long predicted and anxiously awaited by Potterheads. But what was only a dream seems to have come true as the TV special “Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts” is now available worldwide at HBO Max. Check this out!
The year of 2022 seems to have kicked off on the right foot to Potterheads around the world: 2 decades after the launch of the first movie in the British franchise – Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, adapted from J.K. Rowling’s book – fans are now able to celebrate its success with a special reunion entitled “Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts”. Recently launched by HBO Max on January 1st at midnight, and now available to all subscribers of the streaming platform, this special show takes spectators into a nostalgic 2-hour trip down memory lane.
Featuring interviews, conversations, and reminiscent stories from the decade spent working together on the making of the most beloved pop culture movies, the special show reunites major cast members such as Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint, the actors behind main characters Harry, Hermione, and Ron. As always, maintaining a low profile, author J.K. Rowling only appears briefly in some archival footage.
If you still haven’t got the time to check this special reunion out – which we strongly suggest you do -, here is a recap of everything you need to know about it in a top 5 moments:
1. Hermione Granger had a crush on Draco Malfoy: during the special, actress Emma Watson opened up about the crush she had on Tom Felton, Harry Potter’s longtime nemesis in the movies. According to Watson, it all happened during an on-set tutoring session when they were kids aged 10 and 12. Cast members were asked to draw God and Felton drew “a girl with a backward cap on a skateboard”. That’s when Watson “just fell in love with him”. Unfortunately for Dramione shippers, nothing ever happened between the two actors.
2. Harry Potter wrote Bellatrix Lestrange a love letter: after filming the last movie sequel in 2011, Daniel Radcliffe finally decided to open his heart and declare his longtime feelings for co-star Helena Bonham Carter by writing her a love letter. As revealed in the special reunion, in his letter to Bonham Carter, Radcliffe wrote “I do love you and I wish I’d just been born 10 years earlier so I might’ve been in with a chance”.
3. Harry Potter’s parents didn’t want him to commit to a seven-film series: Chris Columbus, the director behind the first two Harry Potter movies, was having a hard time finding an actor with the perfect fit to play Harry. That was until we watched the BBC series “David Copperfield”: the actor playing David was Daniel Radcliffe, in his career debut at age 10. In the special, it was revealed that convincing Radcliffe’s parents was not an easy job, especially considering that, originally, the films were supposed to be recorded in America. Thankfully to all Potter fans, Radcliffe signed on and, as he stated, “I was a really happy kid who had a really haunted quality”.
4. Hermione seriously considered quitting: according to David Yates, as soon as he signed on to direct “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”, he was told that Emma Watson was thinking about not coming back. Watson affirmed feeling lonely and overwhelmed with her sudden fame but ended up changing her mind by realizing that “No one had to convince me to see it through. The fans genuinely wanted you to succeed, and we all genuinely had each other’s backs. How great is that?”.
5. Hogwarts caught fire: for the scene where the other magical schools arrive to compete in the Triwizard Tournament at Hogwarts during “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire”, lots of lit candles appeared magically hanging in the air. In the special, Daniel Radcliffe revealed that real candles were used for this scene and, on the occasion, they started burning through their ropes and falling, causing a small fire.
Make sure to tune it to “Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts”, now available on HBO Max!
Published by HOLR Magazine.