For today’s blog post, I’m going with something a little different. I’ve done book reviews and I’ve talked about my personal life, but there is one book series that has significantly impacted my life. If you read the post title, you can probably figure it out: Harry Potter.
I can’t remember exactly what age I got into it, but I know it was when I was still pretty little. I was 5 years old when the first movie came out, and it was probably about that time that my mom started to read the first couple books to me. Being a kid, I had a pretty short attention span and didn’t retain a whole lot of the information, but I always loved watching the movies when they came out.
I started reading all the books myself when the last one came out in 2007, which would have been the summer before 6th grade. I sped through them all in less than 2 weeks because I just couldn’t put them down. The characters I had been watching on screen somehow came more alive as I read them on the pages. For those two weeks, I completely immersed myself into the world of Harry Potter and magic and I loved it.
Fast forward to 2011 when the very last movie came out. I could say I wasn’t emotional, but that would be a lie. I remember going to the midnight premiere and crying from happiness because I was there, but also a little sadness because it was the end of an era that I had been a part of for most of my life.
The fact that the story is continuing makes me so incredibly happy. I wish I had the chance to watch the play, but I cannot wait to get my hands on the script book and read it just as fast as I did the other books.
On Saturday, I got the chance to visit Warner Bros. studios and see all the sets, props, and costumes that went into the production of all the movies. I walked into the front doors and heard Hedwig’s Theme playing, and chills went down my spine. After 15 years of being a fan, 3 times reading the book, and countless times seeing the movies, I couldn’t believe I was going to see the magic behind the movies.
The first place we saw was the Great Hall. It was filled with costumes from the first movie including the professors, students, and even the sorting hat! After that, we went through a room that had a whole bunch of sets. Highlights include the Gryffindor dormitory and common room, the Chamber of Secrets door, and Ministry of Magic Atrium.
After the room with all the sets, we walked out of the studios to some outdoor sets. We saw the Knight Bus from The Prisoner of Azkaban, #4 Privet Drive, the moving chess pieces from The Philosopher’s Stone, the flying car and motorcycle, and the bridge at Hogwarts.
A billion pictures later, we moved to the prop studio where they kept all the prosthetics and the creatures from the movies. We’re talking stuff like the Basilisk, Hungarian Horntail, and Aragog the giant spider. Creepy yet so cool! We headed out to Diagon Alley (insert freaking out here) and then the tour ended with a model of Hogwarts. I honestly never wanted it to end!
So where does that leave me now? I want to read the books another time through sometime in the near future, and I will always watch the movies over and over when I have the chance. I will wear my Slytherin sweater and represent the best house of all (sorry to all my Gryffindors, Ravenclaws, and Hufflepuffs out there). I will spread the love of Harry Potter to my future children and teach them about the magical world that I grew up in.
To end this post, I’ll leave you all with a quote: “Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean it is not real?”
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