After five years without a new “Harry Potter” movie or book, J.K. Rowling is bringing back the story that captivated an entire generation.
Rowling’s series of books has reached millions of kids across the world, but since her last “Harry Potter” book was written almost a decade ago, some of those kids are now adults. This year, Rowling is inviting old and new fans alike to enter the wizarding world.
Not only is the “Harry Potter” universe returning to the bookshelf, but it’s also making its way onto the big screen. I can’t help but be amazed by the ingenious approach Rowling and her collaborators have taken in getting the old fans and the new ones back into “Harry Potter”: namely, through producing new content.
For the original readers, Rowling is encouraging writers to continue what got kids interested in her work in the first place: the Harry Potter universe. This time, however, the author has decided to write her story in the format of a play entitled “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,” which people can read as a script if they can’t see it live on stage.
On the other hand, Rowling introduces an entirely new story to the big screen with “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” Based on its teaser trailer, the movie encourages those unfamiliar with “Harry Potter” to explore the wizarding world. The setting is different from the older “Harry Potter” books, which could draw in a different category of fans unfamiliar with the original “Harry Potter” universe.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
“Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” returns to the character Harry Potter and the young family he has with Ginny Weasley, including the focus of the play, Albus. The play is divided into two parts but is intended to be seen in one or in consecutive evenings.
The play is directed by Tony Award winner John Tiffany and written by Tiffany and Jack Thorne, along with Rowling. The original cast includes Sam Clemmett as Albus Potter, Jamie Parker as Harry Potter, Noma Dumezweni as Hermione Granger and Paul Thornley as Ron Weasley.
Unfortunately for both Trinity Students and “Harry Potter” fans worldwide, the Palace Theater in West London is the only venue housing the production. However, there are hopes that Broadway may pick up the production sometime in 2017.
If you can’t wait for a production to begin in the U.S., you can order the play in book form online, at www.cursedchildstore.com for about $26 (or £20.00 to be exact).
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them
Set in New York City during 1926, “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” follows Newt Scamander on his adventure in the wizarding world. Based on information from Pottermore (a website organized by Rowling), the new film will focus on magic in North America, potentially including a Hogwarts-like academy called Ilvermorny School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. This is a major departure from the Britain-centric content of the past.
Those who have doubts about the quality of movie sequels can rest easy. David Yates, director of the final four “Harry Potter” movies, has returned to the franchise to direct “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” with a promising cast. Starring in the film are Academy Award winner Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterston, Colin Farrell, Dan Fogler and Ezra Miller.
The film will premier in movie theaters November 2016.