The Biography Channel has been running a series called "Creating the World of Harry Potter", which is absolutely fascinating. Besides looking at the cast and the plot choice, it also provides a glimpse into the huge, massive effort that goes into creating a movie like HP. It's broken down into hour-long segments like "Characters", "Movie Magic", and "Sound and Music". That's what I'm doing tonight instead of going to opening night of HP.
Because I'm not a night person, I'm not attending the midnight showing of the last Harry Potter (nor the one at 3am. Um, that's sleepy time, man!). I'm planning on going next week, when the theaters are near-empty and I can sit where I want with a massive vat of buttered popcorn and gallon of Diet Coke (don't judge) and cry my little eyes out at the ending (don't judge). One of my friend's 22-year-old daughter got a Deathly Hallows tattoo and definitely went to the midnight showing. My friend said, "I feel like it's the end of her childhood and so does she!"
Here are some facts I learned from the Biography series and various other sources that I don't remember but can recite when they're asked at trivia!:
--Steven Spielburg was tapped to direct the first movie but Jo Rowling put the kabash on that (thank goodness! Can you imagine how cutsie it would have been? Would probably have ended the HP movies before they really began!)
--Jo Rowling is the richest woman in England, said to have more green than even the Queen. Wow. She's a billionaire.
--Michael Gambon (Dumbledore) and Ralph Fiennes (Voldemort) were both talked into taking their roles by young HP fans. Gambon's granddaughter convinced him and Fiennes nieces and nephews told him to do it.
--Emma Watson (Herminone) almost left before the Half-Blood Prince. Good lord! Who else would (could!) fill those shoes? Thank goodness she stuck around, claiming the pluses outweighed the minuses.
--The actors who played Weasley twins Fred and George (James and Oliver Phelps) are naturally brunets and dyed their hair red for each and every movie. Because what's a Weasley without his or her red hair?
--Over 500 wands were created for the last movie alone. The first ones the prop people created, back for the first movie, were more like magician's wands, with the white ends. Rowling nixed that as soon as she found out.
--Fourteen cars were used to create the flying Ford Anglia.
--The actor who played Professor Flitwick was also an Ewok.
--Aragog, the ancient spider, was a walking, talking 9ft spider, with an 18ft leg span. Can't smash that spider with a shoe.
--The official Hogwarts school motto is Draco dormiens nunquam titillandus, the Latin translation for "Never tickle a sleeping dragon".
Any trivia to add to my collection?