July 31, 2004

JKRowling.com Updates

Rowling's official site has updated with a new Wizard of the Month: Honoria Nutcombe, who founded the Society for the Reformation of Hags.

Thanks to Vlad for the heads-up!

Posted by Jasen at 06:25 PM

Happy Birthday, JKR, Harry, and Richard Griffths!

As you'll see on jkrowling.com, today marks the birthday of two especially important people... First, happy birthday to J.K. Rowling. We'd all like to thank you -- for everything! You've inspired and encouraged many people with your amazing writing.

Next, of course, happy birthday to Harry Potter. Best wishes to these two, and a very happy birthday!

It also happens to be Richard Griffth's (Uncle Vernon) birthday today, so best of wishes to him as well!

What a busy day today...

Posted by M17 at 09:06 AM

July 30, 2004

Fan Art Gallery Now Open!

There's a new addition to the iHP Discussion Forums today -- presenting the Fan Art Gallery! If you got some artwork and wanna show it off, check out the link, but remember, you must be a forum member first!

Posted by Jasen at 12:20 PM

New Movie Cast Pages Up!

I've just managed to finish off a few new movie cast info pages for the following actors:
Julie Walters, Richard Harris, Kenneth Branagh, John Hurt, and Robbie Coltrane!

Enjoy :)

Posted by Jasen at 11:30 AM

Happy Birthday, Neville!

Thanks to forum member Shruti for informing us that according to J.K. Rowling official site, today is indeed Neville Longbottom's birthday!

Posted by Jasen at 09:27 AM

July 29, 2004

Potter Used to Promote John Kerry's Campaign

"Restore Wizardry With Kerry and Potter!"

...proclaim presedential campaign buttons, "complete with side-by-side smiling portraits of [John] Kerry and Harry Potter..."

Button business is brisk both inside and outside the Democratic National Convention, where delegates and political aficionados are snapping up the circular memento faster than delegates can nominate John Kerry and John Edwards as their presidential and vice-presidential candidates.

Not a huge thing, but still noteworthy. Source: The Gainesville Sun

Posted by M17 at 09:10 PM

iHP Staff Search Update

Jasen here. A quick note on the iHP staff search, we'll soon be notifying all applicants whether or not they were hired, so please stay tuned! And once again, a very big thank you for all that have already participated in this search!

Posted by Jasen at 01:42 PM

Ralph Fiennes Closer To Being Voldemort?

According to TLC, the rumors of Ralph Fiennes playing Voldemort in Goblet of Fire are getting stronger. Stay tuned for more.

Posted by Jasen at 01:37 PM

Half-Bloods and Pure Bloods Draw Nazi Parallel

JK ROWLING made the "chilling" discovery that villains in her books used the same twisted logic as the Nazis when she visited a Holocaust museum, the author has revealed.

Ms Rowling was asked by a fan to explain why some people in the stories - including the hero Harry Potter - are referred to as "half-blood" wizards.

She replied that the terms "half-blood" and "pure-blood" were used by prejudiced characters such as the evil Lucius Malfoy and the Death Eaters, servants of arch-villain Lord Voldemort.

Ms Rowling said she had invented the idea that some wizards were not considered to be "pure", and realised the similarities with the Nazis’ beliefs only afterwards when she visited a museum dedicated to the Holocaust, in which six million Jewish people died.

Her decision to talk about such a sensitive issue was welcomed by an education officer at The Jewish Museum, who said the stories could be used to help children deal with racism in the playground.

Read on at scotsman!

Posted by Jasen at 01:35 PM

J.K. Rowling's Official Site Making The Numbers

Says scotsman.com:

JK ROWLING has been crowned queen of the world wide web after her new internet site attracted a staggering 220 million "hits".

The Edinburgh author’s website has proved phenomenally popular since it was launched just eight weeks ago. The home page receives 27.5 million hits on average a week making it the most popular childrens’ site on the internet.

The author’s website will soon have racked up more "hits" than her 260 million book sales over the past seven years.

Posted by Jasen at 01:32 PM

MTV Delays Goblet of Fire Segment

An update from a previous story... MTV's TRL has delayed their piece from on the set of Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire that was set to air this Friday. Leaky says that sources involved report that this piece has been postponed for a few months, likely to air in November. We'll keep you posted with updates as they become available.

Posted by M17 at 11:09 AM

Double Cast for Neville Longbottom

ic Berkshire reports...

The 15-year-old has found himself mixing with stars of stage and screen as the double for Neville Longbottom. "I always really wanted to be an actor but never thought it would be a reality" he said. "It's brilliant."

After being measured and having his photo taken, Thomas Davy was called back for an audition at Pinewood Studio. He impressed the director so much he was cast as the double for the bumbling Neville in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

Thomas is already living most teenagers' dreams. "I have a trailer were I can play around and was sat next to Miranda Richardson [Rita Skeeter] in make-up the other day" he said.

Posted by M17 at 08:05 AM

July 28, 2004

Behold, Harry Potter Country!

Thanks to reader Julez for sending us this article from ic seftonandwestlancs, about the various filming locations used for the HP movies.

Posted by Jasen at 11:54 AM

Prisoner of Azkaban Creates Attendance Records

Cinema audiences soared to a 35-year high last month as wet weather sent Brits scuttling indoors. A dismal June saw 14.7 million people head for the big screens, with Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban their top choice. That's the highest June total since The Italian Job and The Wild Bunch came out in 1969. Harry Potter was the biggest cinema draw in June, making £36.9million.

More from The Daily Record.

Posted by M17 at 09:27 AM

New Video Game System Promotes Health

Here's a way to turn your love of video games into a great workout regime as well. PowerGrid Fitness is selling a product called the kiloWatt Intensity Gaming System. It looks like a machine you might see at the local gym.

There is a single shoulder-height joystick for your controller. There is a back brace to push against. When you push, sensitive sensors measure the strain you are placing on an alloy metal resistance rod and a microprocessor calculates how hard you're pushing. The more you push, the more power you have playing the video game.

As the article (from ABC6 & FOX4; Billings, Montana) reports, ideal games for the kiloWatt system include Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.

Posted by M17 at 09:24 AM

Potter Conjures Profits for Time Warner

As Reuters reports...

Time Warner Inc., the world's largest media company, on Wednesday posted a better-than-expected quarterly profit on higher television networks revenue and its latest "Harry Potter" movie. The New York-based owner of the Warner Bros studios, CNN and HBO posted a second-quarter net profit of $777 million, or 17 cents a share, compared with $1.06 billion, or 23 cents a share, in the year-earlier quarter.

More at the link.

Posted by M17 at 09:17 AM

July 27, 2004

Happy Birthday M17!

Today, fellow iHP staff member, M17 celebrates his 16th birthday! Send all your birthday wishes and greetings over to m17@iharrypotter.net!

Thanks for all that you do here, M ;)

Posted by Jasen at 08:01 PM

News On The PoA DVD + Three-Pack!!

Here we are in July and already talking about the DVD -- who would've figured :p

DVD Answers has up new info on the DVD, which will be released November 23 at a suggested retail price of $29.95. And there will even be a three-pack released the same day, which will include all three films (a total of six discs). Check out the More link for details!

Warner has officially announced Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban which stars Daniel Radcliffe as the now legendary wizard. The two-disc set will be available to own from the 23rd November this year, for around $29.95. As well as a 2.40:1 anamorphic widescreen presentation and English Dolby Digital 5.1 track, the disc will include deleted scenes, a Conjuring a Scene featurette that takes an in-depth look at the making of key scenes from the film and a Creating The Vision feature which includes a revealing interview with author J.K. Rowling, Also included will be three new interactive challenges in which you can test your memory with "Magic You May Have Missed", help Crookshanks "Catch Scabbers" and go on an unexpected quest with Sir Cadogan. Other features will include two self guided tours of Honeydukes and Professor Lupin's Classroom, a sing-along with the Hogwarts choir, a Hogwarts Portrait Gallery, cast interviews by Johnny Vaughan and the Shrunken Head, an Electronic Arts game preview, a feature in which you meet the animal trainers in care of the magical creatures, trailers for all three Harry Potter films and more. Arriving the same day will be a Harry Potter three-pack release, containing the first three Harry Potter films. This will retail for $59.92.

The cover of the PoA DVD can be seen here. All disc special features and cover images are subject to change.

Posted by Jasen at 06:01 PM

PoA Helps Set Summer Box Office Record

From IMDB:

Thanks primarily to the astounding success of Shrek 2 ($429.2 million cumulative as of this weekend), Spider-Man 2 ($328.5 million cumulative), and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban ($241.8 million cumulative), the summer box office is now running 14 percent ahead of last year, when a new record was set, the Hollywood Reporter reported today (Tuesday).

Posted by Jasen at 05:35 PM

Charlie Weasley, Up Close and Personal

Dawn writes:

The Burrow who presented the Richard Fish (Bill Weasley interview) now has an interview with Alex Crockford (Charlie Weasley) up on the site. Sad to say the news on Charlie's chances of returning for Goblet aren't high.

Posted by Jasen at 01:01 PM

July 26, 2004

FOUR YEARS Mini-Site Updated

I've just added a Look Back at v2 to the Four Year mini-site, which you can check out at the link!

Remember, we'll be updating all week, so check back!

Posted by Jasen at 05:37 PM

JK Rowling Updates Site with NEW Questions

Many thanks to iHP forum member shruti_11 for this tip...JK Rowling's official website has been updated with new Frequently Asked Questions and of course, their answers. New questions include:

  • Will Arthur Weasley be the new Minister for Magic?

  • Is Tom Riddle the Half-Blood Prince?

  • In what way is "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" related to "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets"?

  • Why are some people in the wizarding world called 'half-blood' even though both their parents were magical?
  • To see the answers, click here! Remember, you saw it @ iHP first! :)

    Posted by Jasen at 07:26 AM

    July 25, 2004

    I'm Baaaaaaack!

    Well, I'm back from my little weekend off, which was great! Checking my e-mail today, I was overwhelmed by all the birthday greetings that I received from readers. I'd like to thank you all for your kind, kind words and support :)

    And don't forget to check out the iHP FOUR YEAR mini-site, which takes a look back at the site from the very beginning, in retrospect. We'll be updating it all week, so check back everyday!

    Thank you all once again for four awesome years of iHP! Now, where did I put that piece of cake...

    Posted by Jasen at 08:33 PM | TrackBack

    Bulgarian Website Aims To Ban Harry Potter

    From noinvite.com:

    Bulgarians launched a special website dedicated to the mission of banning Harry Potter books.

    According to the website - http://www.stop-harry-potter.hit.bg - the sequence putting an emphasis on magical rituals was "dangerous." The authors also lash Harry Potter for making kids believe that one could fight evil forces through" white magic."

    The Bulgarians underline that according to the Bible, there is no difference between different types of magic.

    "Be careful, do not open those books even if you're curious about them!" - the website says.

    Posted by Jasen at 02:11 PM

    Fans Celebrate Potter In Summer Learning Workshop

    Times Recorder has this:

    ZANESVILLE -- Christian Pettet has read all the Harry Potter books -- twice.

    The 11-year-old, soon-to-be sixth-grader, participated in a one-day Harry Potter workshop at Ohio University Zanesville Friday along with 19 other students ranging from fourth to seventh grades. The group is broken into four "Houses" based on the houses in the Harry Potter series, written by J.K. Rowling.

    ...The workshop serves as a way for educators to get children involved in educational programs during the summer months. This is the fourth summer literary workshop for children the campus has offered -- the third using the Harry Potter theme. Last year the theme was the Columbus Zoo.

    Posted by Jasen at 02:08 PM

    Siriusly, Now, The Summer Dog Days

    Reader Avalon1 writes:


    i actually don't think this is a real 'news scoop' but i thought it was interesting nonetheless.

    kind of harry potter related but more historical, this article talks about how the origin of dog days in the summer came about - from sirius, the dog star.

    have a great day!

    Posted by Jasen at 02:03 PM

    Harry Potter Inspires Christian Alternative

    G. P. Taylor, an Anglican vicar, onetime roadie for the Sex Pistols and former all-around sinner, was roaring across the Yorkshire moors on his Yamaha XV1100 in a lightning storm when the idea for his hit Christian children's book, "Shadowmancer," came to him.

    Like some other committed Christians, he had been disturbed by the amount of witchcraft and the occult in children's literature. "Harry Potter," for instance. The best-selling author J. K. Rowling gives too much power to the forces of evil in her books, he told parishioners. Well, one congregant replied, why not write your own book then?

    Continue reading at The NY Times!

    Thanks to Avalon1 for the tip!

    Posted by Jasen at 02:00 PM | TrackBack

    July 24, 2004

    You-Know-Who was Who?

    A British actor claims he was hired to play Harry Potter’s arch-enemy Lord Voldemort in the big-screen adventures of JK Rowling’s hero but has been pushed out of the films by the celebrity demands of Hollywood. Richard Bremmer, a veteran theatre, television and film actor, told the Sunday Herald that during shooting in 2001 of Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone, he learned he would not be seen on screen nor credited as the villain.

    His sequences were cut and he was credited only as the voice of “He Who Must Not Be Named” – one of the phrases that fearful wizards use to refer to Voldemort at the beginning of the first Harry Potter book.

    Much more can be found at the Sunday Herald.

    Posted by M17 at 09:22 PM

    Visual Science Leads the Pack

    On a complete turnaround from our previous story, sales from the video game Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban have helped computer game developer Visual Science, as reported by The Scotsman:

    Visual Science, led by Russell Kay and Andy Campbell, has doubled in size over the past year by developing a string of hits including ‘Harry Potter: Quidditch World Cup’.

    Turnover rose by 110% to £2.8m between 2002 and 2003, staff numbers have grown from 38 to 75 and the company has opened its first US office in Los Angeles.

    Posted by M17 at 09:20 PM

    Amazon Blames Lackluster Earnings on Lack of Potter

    Source: Silicon Valley

    Amazon, the Internet's largest retailer, posted its fourth consecutive quarterly profit Thursday and raised its full-year forecasts, but a revenue figure that fell short of Wall Street expectations sent shares in the company tumbling more than 7 percent. Remarkably, Amazon execs blamed the slip in its second-quarter revenue on the absence of a new Harry Potter title. "Media revenue grew 35 percent and would have been substantially higher without the year-ago compare of Harry Potter 5," said Amazon CFO Tom Szkutak.

    "So, Tom, are you saying the entire deceleration in international media products is due to Harry Potter?" asked Prudential Equity Group's Mark Rowen...

    "It is actually hard to know," replied Szkutak. "We certainly know what our sales were of Harry Potter 5 last year in the accompanying attachments, but certainly we had very positive traffic. So it's hard to tell." But Rowen wasn't buying it. "I might be wrong," he said, "but I don't think you can explain all of it with 'Harry Potter."

    Posted by M17 at 09:15 PM

    JK Rowling Expecting Third Child

    from JK Rowling's Official Website:

    "I am really delighted to say that I am expecting a third baby, who is due next year. I always wanted three children, so I could not be happier.

    Now, I know that many Harry Potter fans’ first reaction will be what does this mean for the timing of book six? (I’m not maligning you… I’m sure you’re happy for me… but I know you really want that book!) So let me reassure you that book six remains well on track and, fingers crossed of course, I don’t foresee any baby-related interruptions or delays. I still can’t say for sure when it will be finished, but I have written a lot and I really like it (a reckless challenge to fate, that; I bet the next chapter goes horribly wrong now)."

    Thanks to iHP reader Crystal for the tip!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 09:23 AM

    July 23, 2004

    PoA Game Helps EA Report Higher Sales

    from the Financial Times:

    Strong sales of the new Harry Potter video game enabled Electronics Arts, the world's leading video game maker, to report better-than- expected fiscal first-quarter results yesterday.

    EA said sales in the most recent quarter were driven new titles such as Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, Fight Night 2004 and UEFA Euro 2004, each selling more than 1m units in the quarter. EA said demand for these games was strongest in Europe.

    Read more at the link above!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 06:33 PM

    Miranda Richardson Cast as Rita Skeeter

    so says Leaky:

    "Extremely reliable sources tell us that British actress Miranda Richardson will play Rita Skeeter in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Ms. Richardson is most commonly known for her roles in The Hours (playing Vanessa Bell), Sleepy Hollow (playing Lady Mary Van Tassel, pictured here with Michael Gambon, aka Dumbledore) and The Crying Game (playing Jude)."

    More information on the actress can be found at her unofficial website as well as the link above!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 06:29 PM

    Aaaanddd....Happy Birthday to iharrypotter.net!

    Yep, that's right----in addition to Daniel Radcliffe turning 15 and our webmaster Jasen turning 17, today marks the fourth birthday of iharrypotter.net! Four years ago this day, Jasen decided to start up a little Potter fan site on Geocities. Four summers later, look what we have!

    To commemorate this special event, we've launched a new iHP Turns Four Mini Site filled with memories, reader testimonials, and screenshots of older versions of the site. The mini site's still not complete, and pages will be added to it (including staff testimonials, more screenshots, and other things) in the upcoming days, so be sure to keep checking it for more updates as we celebrate iHP's fourth birthday, along with Daniel's 15th and Jasen's 17th!

    Thanks to all of your support for helping make iharrypotter.net the success it has become. Check out the Mini Site now, and then head on over to our special Four Years Forum where you can add your own memories.

    Posted by iruhkoi at 08:27 AM

    Happy Birthday Daniel!!!

    Our own real life Harry Potter turns 15 today, July 23. Happy Birthday Dan! Click here to view a short biography.

    Posted by at 07:17 AM

    Happy Birthday to our beloved webmaster!

    Today, July 23 , 2004 is Jasen's 17th birthday. Join with the staff in wishing him a very happy day in which he will receive lots of expensive presents and cake til his heart's content! Click here to write your birthday wishes.

    Posted by Deb at 12:16 AM

    July 22, 2004

    MTV's TRL to be on GoF Set!

    Thanks very much to forum member truegirl1990 for telling us that MTV's TRL show will be on the set of Goblet of Fire next Friday, July 30th. We'll bring you more information and links as they become available.

    Posted by M17 at 07:27 PM

    Potter-based Class Spurs Reading

    After spending 10 days in the Urban Academy of Arcane Knowledge — learning potions and herbology — Jennalee Schermetzler is going to be more likely to pick up a Harry Potter book in her spare time. The Jefferson Elementary School sixth-grader took the summer school class based on J.K. Rowling’s popular book series...

    More from the Manitowoc Herald Times Reporter.

    Posted by M17 at 06:10 AM

    July 21, 2004

    iHP Staff Search Update

    We're almost a week into iHP's new staff search and we're already having great success! For all of you that have already applied, I wanted to let you know that in the next few upcoming days (or possibly even today), we will be making the first round of cuts. Also, there is no need to worry about whether we will contact you or not, as we will respond to everyone at the best of our ability. There are a lot of applicants, so sit tight :)

    That being said, we are experiencing a lack of applicants interested in working for the Movie, Interact, and Gaming sections. You can check out job descriptions in the Press Release.

    In case you're feeling a little unsure or daunted by a job, don't be. Just remember that you won't be working alone; there will always be at least two or three other editorials to collaborate with, so one section won't be your entire responsibility.

    So if you decide you're up for the job, please be sure to send in an application, complete with the required information, as described here.

    If you have any further questions or concerns, please direct them to recruit@iharrypotter.net.

    Thank you all for enthusiasm in the continuing growth of iHP :)

    Jasen, webmaster

    Posted by Jasen at 02:32 PM | TrackBack

    Whoa, Katie Leung Has An Online Blog?!

    No, not really. Apparently, there are some people pretending to be Katie Leung, the actress who's won the coveted role of Cho Chang in the GoF movie. So for clarity's sake, anyone claiming to be Katie Leung online is most likely a fake -- unless she makes an official site or announcement of some kind.

    Posted by Jasen at 02:13 PM | TrackBack

    Happy Birthday Jamie Waylett!

    Everyone at iHP would like to wish Jamie Waylett (Crabbe) a very happy 15th birthday, complete with lots of presents, food, and company.

    Pass me some of that cake!

    Posted by Jasen at 02:10 PM | TrackBack

    July 20, 2004

    Harry Potter and the Internet

    Recent studies by Feedback Research in online behavior have tracked down the public response to films such as Harry Potter and "Spider-Man".

    Movie Enthusiasts Are Likely to Purchase Video/DVD

    -- Harry Potter movie enthusiasts are most likely to purchase the movie when it comes out with 48% of respondents saying they will definitely or probably buy the DVD or video. This number is followed by

    -- Of those who had seen the first or earlier releases of these summer blockbuster sequels, more than half purchased the movies when they were released on video or DVD:

    * 63% of those who saw one or more earlier Harry Potter movies, also bought one or more Harry Potter films.

    -- Most respondents plan on seeing the movies within 1-3 weeks of the movie's release:

    * Harry Potter -- 60% will go within the first few days, 91% within the first three weeks.

    There's much more here.

    Posted by Jasen at 02:59 PM

    Gaming: Tips and Tricks

    TotalVideoGames.com has up some strategies to help you with a number of obstacles in the new GameCube version of the PoA game.

    Posted by Jasen at 02:49 PM

    Rowling Donates Signed Books for Leukemia Centre

    Signed personal belongings from Sharleen Spiteri, Ewan McGregor, Tony Blair, and JK Rowling have been donated for a celebrity auction to help a leukemia centre in Glasgow, UK. Read more from the Evening Times!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 09:26 AM

    Arrive for your wedding in...a Ford Anglia?

    A Northern Ireland car buff is now offering brides and grooms the chance to arrive in replicas of vehicles that were featured in famed movies, including Starsky and Hutch's 1976 Gran Ford Torino, the DeLorean featured in the Back to the Future movies, and the Ford Anglia from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Read more from the BBC!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 09:21 AM

    Ancient Greek Edition Release Looms Closer

    Amazon.com has announced that they will now be accepting orders for Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Ancient Greek Edition), currently scheduled for release on October 15, 2004. The site helpfully notes that customers who have ordered this version of the book have also bought Athenaze: An Introduction to Ancient Greek by M.G. Balme, et al.

    Just in case anyone needs something to do while we wait for the Half Blood Prince.

    Posted by iruhkoi at 09:10 AM

    July 19, 2004

    New FAQ Poll At JKRowling.com!

    That's right folks, JK Rowling has updated her site to include a brand new FAQ Poll, from which she will answer one question concerning the books after readers cast their votes. The choices this time are:

  • Is Percy working undercover for any secret organization/boss?

  • Where has Peter Pettigrew (Wormtail) been since the end of 'Goblet of Fire'?

  • What did Dumbledore's Howler to Aunt Petunia mean? ('Remember my last'?)
  • Head on over to jkrowling.com to cast your vote now! Click on the paperclips, select one of the envelopes, and then click on "FAQ Poll" in the links menu that appear papercliped to the left side of the page you see. Thanks to iHP reader Hamina for the tip!

    UPDATE The results as of Jul 19 2004 are 19% for the first question, 23% for the second question, an 57% for the third question.

    Posted by iruhkoi at 11:23 AM

    July 18, 2004

    Ministry Census Results: The Book 6 Title

    There's a new Ministry Census poll online; meanwhile, here's the results from the last one:

    What do you think of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince as Book 6’s title?

    41 % 29 % 19 % 7 % 3 %
    Responses Votes
    Ohh Ms. Rowling, you've outdone yourself again! 1016
    Hallejuah it isn't Storgé! 720
    It's OKAY, but I'd prefer something else. 467
    You're kidding...right? 183
    I want Storgé! 74
    Total Votes: 2460
    Posted by Jasen at 02:34 PM

    July 17, 2004

    French Government vs. Potter

    Critics are crying foul over Potterism. They say it throws a bad light and will taint childrens views of government for years to come. Of course a lot is misinturpreted. For instance they site Cedric as weak and Percy as unintelligent. And although I'll admit Percy has made some bad choices, he is far from stupid. Read about it in the NY Times.

    Posted by Deb at 11:08 PM

    Who's This Joneses, Fellar?

    JK ROWLING may be about to be hit by a flying “bludger” as a Scottish writer aims to rival the success enjoyed by dramatisations of the Harry Potter books with adaptions of her own work.

    Julia Donaldson, from Bearsden in Glasgow, last week signed a six-figure film contract with Warner Bros and Heyday films, the team behind the hugely successful Harry Potter films, for her forthcoming novel, The Giants And The Joneses. With this level of big screen backing, Donaldson could be set to topple Rowling, much as a bludger knocks characters off their brooms in the Harry Potter series.

    Continue reading at the Sunday Herald.

    Posted by Jasen at 09:35 PM

    New "Diggory" Pics

    Check out CBBC Newsround for a few new pictures of the actor cast as Cedric Diggory. Thanks, Leaky.

    Posted by M17 at 09:15 AM

    Japanese Translation Sets Record

    From Mainichi Daily News...

    The first printing of the Japanese language version of "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," the fifth in the series of books about a boy wizard, will reach 2.9 million sets, a record for the industry, publisher Sayzansha announced.

    The book, which comes in two volumes that will not be sold separately, beats the record of 2.3 million sets set in October 2002 by the series' fourth book, "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire."

    Sayzansha said that the Japanese translations of the first four books in the Harry Potter series have sold 16.84 million copies. The size of the first print was determined by orders from bookstores that Sayzansha had received by the end of June.

    Posted by M17 at 09:13 AM

    July 16, 2004

    Goblet of Fire to be "the most expensive movie ever made"

    And apparently more expensive than any of the movie adaptations from the Lord of the Rings trilogy. From the Sunday Mail:

    Goblet Of Fire the fourth Potter film will cost £170 million £5 million more than Return of the King, the last in the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

    Filming is due to begin in April and [director Mike] Newell said: ''I think of myself as being really lucky. I'm going to make the most expensive film there has ever been.

    [Robbie Coltrane (Hagrid)]'s character has presented Newell with a giant sized headache finding an 8 ft tall French woman to play Hagrid's love interest, Madame Maxime. He said: ''We are casting right now. I've been in Paris, looking for giant women and French schoolgirls.''

    Read more at the link above!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 07:29 PM

    John Williams: Not scoring Goblet of Fire?

    Well, is it déjà vu all over again? This from JWfan.net:

    We have learned from two very reliable sources that John Williams is not scoring Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, due to scheduling conflicts -although things might change in the coming months.

    According to o­ne of the sources (someone very close to the composer), Williams might write the score for Memoirs of a Geisha. Both 'Harry Potter 4' and 'Geisha' are scheduled for release in Fall, 2005.

    Remember, this is UNCONFIRMED. Trust iharrypotter.net to keep you updated as this story develops and more information is known. Discuss the possibility in our official forum thread.

    Posted by iruhkoi at 07:19 PM

    News Archives Reformatted

    With some help from Iruhkoi, I've managed to get up the iHP News Archives Main Page, which indexes this site's news by category, month, and now, by week. Check it out at the link -- And not to mention, the Search feature has now been revamped ;)

    Posted by Jasen at 02:03 PM | TrackBack

    Dan, Rupert, and Emma On Cover of teenVogue!

    Thanks to reader Nancy H. for letting us know that for the June/July issue of teenVogue magazine, the trio can be spotted gracing its cover! If you have a copy of the mag and a scanner, we'd appreciate any scans for the site! Just send them here!

    Posted by Jasen at 10:06 AM

    New Q&A With Actor Playing Bill Weasley!

    The Burrow was lucky enough to have a little sit-down with actor Richard Fish about his role as Bill Weasley in the upcoming GoF movie. Here's a snippet:

    Richard, tell us about yourself. Where are you from? How old are you? And are you a natural red-head? Have you been acting a long time? What other (if any) work have you done (on stage or screen)?

    Okay, I was born in London and am currently studying English Literature at the University of Hertfordshire in Hatfield. I'm 24 years old and yes it's all natural! As for acting, I'm still trying to find some significant roles (of which, to date, Bill is the most) after performing countless plays within the University Drama Society as well as showing a keen interest in a new local Amateur Dramatics company called Act 2 Productions. Most of my on screen work has been as a background extra with The Casting Collective in several TV and film productions, namely Band of Brothers.

    Read the rest here!

    How did you get the part of Bill Weasley? Did they search extensively for the oldest Weasleys boys?

    As I've said I used to work with The Casting Collective and it was through this company that Alfonso spotted my picture and asked me to come in for an audition. I believe there were about 20 other potential 'Bill's as well as 'Charlie's from which myself and Alex were chosen.

    Have you spoken with Alex (Crockford) since shooting the Egypt scenes for 'Prisoner of Azkaban'?

    I haven't actually. Having only spent a couple of days in total on set there wasn't much time to get to know him but I did give him a lift to the station when we wrapped!

    How much time did you spend with the other Weasley actors and what do you think of them?

    Like I said only a couple of days but it was certainly well worth every minute with them. Having Mark Williams and Julie Walters as your Mum and Dad is pretty cool! And Percy isn't as mean in real life either... ;)

    What are your chances of returning for 'Goblet of Fire'?

    GoF is certainly looking good for the Weasley family as after Azkaban I had a talk with a few of the Assistant Directors over a couple of months and after they learned I was keen to return to hopefully make Bill have a larger prescence, they confirmed that they were interested in re hiring me for the job. Hopefully Alex as well. One thing wich they did mention, which I must too so as not to disappoint anyone, is that we'll be there in a reduced form from the book due to it's length. Fingers crossed they won't cut too much of us!

    Posted by Jasen at 10:02 AM

    Arthur A. Levine Speaks About Children's Literature

    Arthur A. Levine, the American publisher of the US versions of the Harry Potter books (as an imprint of Scholastic Inc.), spoke to The Oregonian about the writing of children's literature, and plans on visiting the Lewis & Clark College in Portland, OR at 7:30 PM on Monday, July 19, 2004 and giving a speech called "Aiming for Excellence: What You Can Learn From the Most Honored Books of 2003."

    Excerpts from the article reveal some deatails about how the "translation" is made from British manuscript of the Potter novels to the published American version.

    "There is a great misapprehension that it's easy to write a children's book," Arthur Levine said. "It's widely held in all forms of literature -- that it's somehow easy to do -- but it often seems that people read to their kids and make the leap that they could write something that connects in the same way as the book they're reading."

    Levine should know. He has his own imprint at Scholastic Inc. and has edited two books that won the Caldecott Medal ("Officer Buckle and Gloria" by Peggy Rathman and "Mirette on the High Wire" by Emily Arnold McCully). His main claim to fame these days is that he is J.K. Rowling's American editor and works with her on the "Harry Potter" series. It says "Arthur A. Levine Books/Scholastic" on the spine of Rowling's books, visibility that attracts anyone with a manuscript.

    Levine's imprint publishes about 15 books every year. He edits all of them himself.

    OK, what can you learn from the most-honored books of 2003?

    "Well, I don't want to give my whole talk away, but it's always useful and interesting to look at the books that won the major awards in our field to see what you can learn," he said. "It's not always the case, though, that the books that were universally acclaimed or got the best reviews turn out to be the best books in any year. 'Charlotte's Web' is the classic case. It did not win the Newbery Medal the year it was published."

    The "Harry Potter" series has won a few awards and lost a few, too. The title for the sixth book in the series, "Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince," recently was announced by Rowling on her (very cool) new Web site, www.jkrowling.com/en/thankyou.cfm. No publication date has been announced. (The paperback edition of "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" will be published on Aug. 10.)

    When Rowling completes her manuscript, Levine will read it, make notes, fly to London and meet with his counterpart at Rowling's British publisher, Bloomsbury, then discuss the novel with Rowling.

    "I'm happy to talk about Harry Potter," Levine said. "I love working on the books."

    Read more at the link above!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 08:21 AM

    Locking Mechanism Company Showcases Work

    Ever wonder where those "magically latching" locks on the 70 ft-high Hogwarts door seen in the Prisoner of Azkaban movie came from?

    "Lenze Ltd, based in Caxton Road, Bedford, is currently showcasing its work in the latest Harry Potter movie The Prisoner of Azkaban. They supplied 14 locking mechanisms using, for the technically-minded, linear actuators to push in and out and rotate the locks automatically.

    While Harry and the Hogwarts School of Wizardry may be responsible for the conjuring tricks, it is the muggles at Lenze's school of engineering who made the magic door work in reality."

    Read more at The Luton News!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 08:07 AM

    IMDB Lists Half Blood Prince Movie

    Although the book hasn't been released yet and there is no known release date, the Internet Movie Database (IMDB) has listed "Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince" as an upcoming movie slated for a 2008 release. Obviously an estimation, but at least they're confident the book will be out before then!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 07:55 AM

    July 15, 2004

    PRESS RELEASE: New iHP Staff Wanted!!

    Hey folks, Iruhkoi here.

    iHarryPotter.net wants YOU to join us! If you're an avid Potter fan, enjoy iHP.net, its content, forums, and updates, then this is your chance to become a part of the worldwide Harry Potter phenomenon and a member of the iHarryPotter.net site staff. We're looking for motivated, interested individuals who are willing to volunteer at least 4-6 hours of their time weekly in one or more of the following available positions:

    NEWS POSTERS/EDITORS (Positions Available: 3) - iharrypotter.net news is the central aspect of the site, and provides constantly updated content to site readers. ihp.net news is managed by posters who specialize in one (or more) of our news categories, which include Books (General, Book 5, Book 6, Book 7), Gaming and Collecting, J.K. Rowling, and Harry Potter General News. If you're applying for this position, be sure to state the categories that interest you for placement, as you will be responsible for posting news *only* for those subjects that you have selected and consider yourself to be a "specialist" in.

    SECTION EDITORS - these staff members are responsible for writing, editing, publishing, and otherwise managing the non-News sections of iharrypotter.net. Sections include:

    • BOOKS (Positions Available: 2-3): The Books staff will focus primarily on updating the various sections including: the Books 6 and 7 Rumor pages, The Wizard’s Guide, Hogwarts, Character Bios, etc.
    • MOVIE (Positions Available: 2-3): The Movies Staff will focus on updating Cast/Crew, Filming Locations, and individual pages for each movie (where necessary).
    • INTERACT (Positions Available: 2): The newest and most exciting section of iharrypotter.net, the Interact Staff will handle all reader Fan Art, Wallpaper and other Downloads submissions, create new surveys and other site-reader interactive features. In addition, some Interact staff members may be involved in writing and managing Character Bios or other additions to complete the iharrypotter.net Ministry of Magic Interact feature.
    • GAMING (Positions Available: 2): Gaming Staff will find as much information as possible on all upcoming games related to Harry Potter. This includes Developer info, general game info, news, reviews, etc. Original strategy guides and the like are welcome, but as they can take a long time to write, Game Previews will remain iHP's primary focus in this section.
    • J.K. ROWLING (Positions Available: 1): This is the smallest section and therefore does not require too much work. However, JKR Staff will collect past and recent chats involving the author and update her biography with any new information, etc.
    OPINARI - almost a site on its own, Opinari is the place where you express your contemplative opinions on anything and everything Harry Potter. This area is dedicated entirely to fan commentary and other kinds of non-fan-fiction writing. Opinari tasks are very demanding, as they involve producing entirely original content fairly quickly, requiring both excellent writing skills and creativity.
    • REGULAR EDITORIALISTS (Positions Available: 5-7): we need editorialists who can produce a thoughtful, unique piece of writing every two weeks (mini-article) to one month (complete editorials). Visit opinari.iharrypotter.net to view some sample pieces.
    • WIZARD DIARIES WRITER (Positions Available: unspecified): Wizard Diaries is a new project that has yet to be formalized and released, but it involves a writer selecting a character of their choice (example: Sirius Black) and writing entries as if they were that character. They will write entries that would coincide/relate to the plots of the books thus far, and successful entries require complete understanding of the character in question and a mastery of writing in a style that impersonates the character as described by JK Rowling in the books. It's a form of fan-fiction, but would not involve the creation of entirely new plotlines separate from that which is already provided in the books. It is a daunting task; please only apply if you are willing to make the effort.
    FORUMS (Positions Available: unspecified, but a very limited amount) - another central aspect of iharrypotter.net and almost a site of its own, the iharrypotter.net forums provide readers with a place to discuss their theories, ideas, questions, and comments with others, and by doing so, be able to find answers and clarify their understanding of the Harry Potter world. The forum staff is dedicated to ensuring that all members have a pleasant and productive atmosphere, and focuses its efforts on ensuring that all posts conform to forum rules and agreements, and that all members are respectful of others, among other things. To apply to be a forum moderator, you must be a forum member for at least 3 months with at least 100 meaningful posts.

    • Positions are first come, first served as accepted.
    • You must be at least 13 years of age.
    • All iharrypotter.net staff are volunteers. There is NO COMPENSATION for any work you may contribute to iharrypotter.net as a member of the website management team.
    • You must have good English communication skills (writing, reading, and spelling).
    • Knowledge of HTML/experience with Web programming is helpful, and, in some cases, required.
    • You must be willing to make a TIME COMMITMENT of at least 4-6 hours weekly. If you cannot or are unsure if you meet this criterion, please do not apply, as we are interested in dedicated staff only.
    • If you are a member of the iharrypotter.net forums, your application will be considered only after a critical evaluation of your forum posting habits, content, and behavior. If you have been cited for any forum violations by any iharrypotter.net moderator your application WILL NOT be considered.
    • We will read ALL applications, and will TRY to respond to as many of them as we can, however, it may take a while and may not be possible for us reply to every single submission. Please do not repeatedly apply or ask us when you will find out your application status; doing this will NOT improve your chances and will probably lessen the likelihood of your acceptance. If we accept you as staff, you will know.
    • A good sense of humor helps!

    1. Send your application from a valid e-mail address where we can contact you (do not use an address different from the one you wish to be contacted with).

    2. Include your first name or a pseudonym for which you would like to be referred to, as well as your age.

    3. State the position(s) for which you are applying. You may apply for a maximum of three positions (keep in mind, however, that you may only be accepted for one--so make sure you are equally happy with all of your selections).

    4. State the number of hours you are willing to commit per week (minimum 4).

    5. If you are a forum member, state your username.

    6. Provide us with a brief (300 word max) application paragraph, which must address: descriptions of any experience with web programming (HTML, etc. if applicable), positions (current or previous) with other Harry Potter sites (if applicable), your favorite aspect of iharrypotter.net (and why), what you would like to see improved/changed at iharrypotter.net (and why), and why you are applying (be creative, don't simply say: "because I'm the biggest fan of Harry Potter and think it's cool to be a part of a fan site"). Also include how long you've been visiting iharrypotter.net and list other Potter fan sites that you visit regularly (if applicable).

    7. If you are applying for an Opinari position, please also send, in addition to the above, a 500 word writing sample that would, if you are accepted, be considered your first entry published on the Opinari website. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT; please do not wait for us to ask. Hence, make sure that the writing sample is entirely your own work, and conforms to the type of Opinari position you are applying.

    SUBMIT YOUR APPLICATION TO: recruit@iharrypotter.net -- No attachments, please!

    And finally, thank you for taking the time to submit to us if you are interested; all of us here at iharrypotter.net appreciate your continued support of our site and its efforts to bring more of the Harry Potter fan world to you in new, original, and useful ways.

    -- iruhkoi and the iHP.net staff

    If you have any questions or comments, please don't hesitate to send them to me (iruhkoi@iharrypotter.net) , M17 (m17@iharrypotter.net), or Jasen (jasen@iharrypotter.net)

    Posted by iruhkoi at 02:20 PM

    More Pics From 2005 Mary Grandpre Calendar!

    El Cronista de Salem sends us some more links to unseen pics from the new 2005 Mary Grandpre Monthly Calendar:

    The cover, Hagrid and Harry, back cover, and the cover of the Day to Day calendar.

    You saw 'em here first!

    Posted by Jasen at 01:37 PM

    Ottakar's Sales Rise

    Half-year sales at Ottakar's have been strong and gross margins have been in line with its expectations, the British bookseller said. Total sales were up 19.9% with like-for-like sales up 4.1%... They cited the success of JK Rowling's Harry Potter books as one of the reasons sales were rising.

    Read more about the British bookseller here. (Via WizardNews)

    Posted by M17 at 09:08 AM

    Updates on the Official Site

    The official Harry Potter site has a few updates; thanks to El Cronista de Salem for this tip:

    You can find more downloads at the "Downloads" page. You can create your own door hanger with the badge of Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Slytherin or Ravenclaw, with your name in it. You can print a door hanger of Sirius Black too.

    Also a little extra mention, as El Cronista mentions, official sites such as harrypotter.es, harrypotter.it, harrypotter.de, harrypotter.fr, and harrypotter.jp will now be updated from their respective countries instead of London, as they were before. These sites will contain different styles and content.

    EDIT by Jasen: The Official Site has also released a new Divination Class section of their site, complete with downloads and mini games.

    There's also a new pop-up page that allows you to sample some of the music from the PoA soundtrack if you're still thinking about buying it.

    Posted by M17 at 08:44 AM

    Potter Actors Receive Emmy Nominations

    The Academy of Television Arts & Science announced its nominees for the 56th Annual Emmy Awards, and among them were three actors from the Harry Potter films:

    John Cleese (Nearly Headless Nick) - for his role as "Lyle Finster" in Will & Grace (NBC)
    Alan Rickman (Professor Snape) - for his role as "Alfred Blalock" in Something The Lord Made (HBO)
    Emma Thompson (Professor Trelawney) - for her role as "Nurse Emily," "Homeless Woman," and "The Angel" in Angels In America (HBO)

    Read the rest of the nominations here (Adobe PDF file). Thanks to TLC for the tip!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 07:58 AM

    "Floo Powder" Causes Post Office Scare

    A 16-year-old fan was sending a birthday card "to Harry Potter in England" and sprinkled the envelope with some "floo powder," to "help [the] envelope travel," according to an article in TheKansasCityChannel.com:

    A birthday card to a fictional character shut down a Missouri post office for two hours on Wednesday, KMBC's Lara Moritz reported. A worker at the Buckner post office spotted white powder on an envelope. The office was sealed off and hazmat crews were called in to check out the situation.

    "It's not every day you get a letter with white powder all over it," police Chief Charles Loring said.

    Read more at the link above!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 07:47 AM

    July 14, 2004

    Potter Spoofs Becoming Bestsellers

    123Bharath reports...

    Spoof books parodying hits like 'Harry Potter' and 'The Lord of The Rings' are also becoming bestsellers. According to The Sun, a new chart that came out yesterday shows that the sales of such publications is rapidly increasing.

    Included on this chart are two 'Barry Trotter' books, The Shameless Parody and The Unnecessary Sequel.

    200,000 copies of 'Barry Trotter And The Shameless Parody' have been sold in UK in just three years, whereas its follow-up, 'Barry Trotter And The Unnecessary Sequel' has sold 110,000 books.

    Posted by M17 at 03:27 PM

    Treacle Tart Anyone?

    Ever wonder what treacle tart would taste like in real life? It seems now you can with this new recipe.

    Now if only they had one for ice cold pumpkin juice...

    Posted by Jasen at 01:28 PM

    Caged Beds Row Continues

    Another update on our JK Rowling outraged news story.

    Czech President Vaclav Klaus today criticised the nation’s health boss for ordering the removal of beds with restraining cages from Czech psychiatric facilities, calling the decision – taken in the face of mounting foreign pressure – a “cheap gesture”.

    Klaus was speaking a day after Health Care Minister Josef Kubinyi ordered the immediate removal of the beds, used to confine uncontrollable patients, in response to criticism of the practice by rights groups and other European nations.

    Kubinyi’s spokeswoman said the final straw prompting him to act was a protest letter written to the Czech president by J. K. Rowling, author of the best-selling Harry Potter series of children’s books.

    But after the two government officials met today, a spokesman for the president said he was alarmed by the minister’s “over-hasty step”.

    “The problem of dealing with people suffering from grave psychic disorders is a serious matter and cannot be solved ... by cheap gestures,” said presidential spokesman Petr Hajek.

    Read more at the Scotsman.com.

    Posted by Vickie at 01:17 PM

    9000+ Fans Try To Meet Rowling

    The The Scotsman reports that despite only 500 tickets being available for JK Rowling's Edinburgh International Book Festival appearance, more than 9000 people "asked for an application form." Read more at the link above, or visit Bloomsbury to join the thousands trying to get a ticket.

    Posted by iruhkoi at 06:22 AM

    July 13, 2004

    JK Rowling Outraged Update

    It is good to be able to provide a quick update to our previous newspost.

    The Czech government in response to JK Rowlings concern about the caged beds have today ordered the removal of these beds from their psychiatric facilities. Read this story at the scotsman.com.

    Posted by Vickie at 02:42 PM

    Harry Potter Sandcastle Wins Top Prize

    from SignOnSanDiego.com:

    It was the final stretch of the U.S. Open Sandcastle Competition yesterday, and though much of the day was marked by friendly banter, setbacks such as this one brought on nail-biting tension. The team, which has competed for more than two decades, attempted to replicate Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry from the Harry Potter series.

    Read more and see the sandcastle at the link above!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 10:55 AM

    July 12, 2004

    PoA DVD Deleted Scenes Revealed?

    El Cronista de Salem writes:

    I have the screenplay of the eliminated scenes of 'Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban'. There will be few scenes in the dvd... the eliminated scenes are: 11, 40, 56 and 91-93. I give a little description of them:

    -SCENE 11: in the knight bus, the little head joke with ernie, who
    drives without hands. harry says "uff!".

    -SCENE 40: Hagrid shout to a bird.

    -SCENE 56: Harry, Ron and Hermione speak about Hogsmeade in Hogwarts
    (scene before the attack to the FAT LADY). SOMETHING SPECIAL: Ron buys
    the sneakcope in Derbin and Banges, not in Egypt. Lated they arrive to
    the picture and appears Sir Cadogan speaking.

    -SCENE 91 TO 93: McGonagall ask who has lost the passwords... Neville
    speaks... you know this scene...

    I am going to try to have the original screenplay... but i dont know if i will get it.

    Posted by Jasen at 03:48 PM | TrackBack

    J.K. Rowling Outraged

    Caution: This story deals with mature subject matter.

    Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling has called for an end to the confinement in cages of disabled children in one of the European Union's newest member countries.

    Rowling has protested to the Czech Ambassador to London, Stefan Fule, and written to her local MP following a Sunday newspaper investigation into the plight of children in some of the country's care homes.

    "I am sure that I am not alone in feeling a deep sense of shock that a fellow member of the European Union like the Czech Republic could permit such abuses," she wrote.

    The story continues at the New Zealand Herald.

    The Halifax Herald Limited also has this:

    A further letter from Rowling to her Member of the European Parliament, Catherine Stihler, left no doubt about the strength of her feelings on behalf of both children and adults confined to cages.

    "I am sure that I am one of many who were horrified beyond words to read about the neglect and abuse of such very vulnerable people; indeed, the word torture does not seem too strong," she wrote.

    "The idea that children as young as five are being locked in cages for the majority of their lives is nothing short of horrific; that this is happening in a relatively prosperous fellow EU state can only deepen feelings of outrage."

    Rowling said last week that she would be contacting another MEP, Baroness Nicholson, who is already pressing for reform.

    Posted by Jasen at 03:40 PM | TrackBack

    July 11, 2004

    UPDATE: Of Fads and Harry Potter

    Several of e-mails that we received in response to a young reporter's claim that Harry Potter is a "lame American fad" from earlier this week have been posted on Opinari--click HERE to read them!

    And don't forget the latest Mailbag question!

    Posted by Jasen at 01:50 PM

    July 10, 2004

    Phoenix Paperback On Sale in UK

    Thanks to iHP reader Joe N. for telling us that the UK paperback version of Order of the Phoenix is on sale now! For all the U.S. readers, the US paperback version will go on sale August 10.

    Posted by M17 at 07:02 PM

    Time Warner Benefits from Potter

    As if there was every any doubt? The Harry Potter movies have pushed Time Warner's earnings to a whopping $961 million, as Newsday reports...

    An outstanding box office showing for "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban," the third Potter film, has validated the firm's decision to acquire the rights to the popular series of books by author J.K. Rowling. This success follows "Return of the King," the third film in the "Lord of the Rings" trilogy, which in Time Warner's most recent quarter helped earnings more than double to $961 million.

    Posted by M17 at 06:44 PM

    British PM Opts for Potter-style School System

    Britain's Prime Minister, Tony Blair, has announced a five-year plan to revamp Britain's state-run school system. In his plan, students will be seen in uniforms and in school "house" systems similar to those in the Potter novels. The article, from WebIndia, reports that teachers have mixed reactions to this proposal. You can read more at the link.

    Posted by M17 at 06:40 PM

    NZ Herald Interviews Mike Seresin

    The New Zealand Herald has a new interview of Harry Potter cinematographer Mike Seresin:

    Over the next couple of weeks Alfonso and I got to know one another a bit better and he said 'Do you want to do it?' and I said 'Yeah, I've got bugger all to do so why not? Have a bit of fun, earning Warner Brothers' money'."

    That bit of fun turned into a 18-month commitment - last week Seresin was in Los Angeles helping the transfer of the film to the upcoming DVD.

    You'll find more of the link above at the link above.

    Posted by M17 at 06:35 PM

    Happy Birthday, Fiona Shaw!

    Best wishes on her birthday to Fiona Shaw, who plays Aunt Petunia Dursley in the Potter movies, who turns 46 years old today!

    Thanks to iHP reader Mrufula for the tip.

    Posted by M17 at 06:30 PM

    John Cook's New HP Cartoon

    John Cook writes:

    I've posted a new Harry Potter cartoon. This one answers the question of why all the evil wizards get placed in Slytherin.

    You can see it here! Some of the punchlines sent in are pretty funny, so head on over to check it out.

    Posted by M17 at 01:16 PM

    J.K. Rowling Apperaing at Edinburg Book Festival

    On J.K. Rowlings website, Rowling has posted that she will be appearing at the book festival held in Edinburg. There she will be reading Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix to small audience as well as answering some questions on August 15. Tickets are available by ballot only.

    Click here to find more information on attaining tickets.

    Posted by at 07:51 AM

    July 09, 2004

    Rowling Receives Honorary Degree

    From Newsround:

    JK Rowling has received an honorary degree from the University of Edinburgh, recognising her huge contribution to children's literature.
    JK studied to be a teacher at one of the university's colleges and wrote lots of the Potter books in the city.

    At the ceremony, the University described why they had awarded her with the honorary degree, calling her a publishing phenomenon.

    "Receiving this honorary degree is a particular pleasure," said JK.

    "To receive such a tribute from the city I now call home, and to be in such distinguished company, means a lot to me," she added.

    Check out the link for a pic, and iHP sends our congratulations to Rowling!

    Posted by Jasen at 04:12 PM | TrackBack

    Harry Potter Music For Your Ears

    The London Symphony Orchestra will be playing music from the Harry Potter films as part of their 15-city US concert later this year.

    Posted by Jasen at 04:09 PM

    July 08, 2004

    'Harry and the Potters' set to Perform Around the US

    Two brothers will be traveling to various sites across the US, performing songs based on the Harry Potter books:

    Together they are Harry and the Potters, two brothers -- Paul, 25, and Joe, 17, DeGeorge -- who are on tour this summer playing songs based on and inspired by Harry Potter. The band plays mostly free concerts, with the exception of benefits and "normal" non-library collaborations with other bands, Paul said. Not surprisingly, the DeGeorge brothers are huge fans of J.K. Rowling's best-selling novels.

    "What really amazes me is (the Harry Potter books have) become this thing that's crossed so many generations," Paul said. "It gives kids a way to relate to adults in a way that they never could before."

    Source: The Daily Northwestern

    Their full tour schedule can be viewed here, thanks to Leaky for the link.

    Posted by M17 at 09:11 AM

    Pets, Harry Potter Eliminated from Standardized Tests

    A little off-topic, but for all you students (especially the younger ones), the next time you take a standardized test, you aren't likely to see questions about a pet named Pete, or anything about Harry Potter... that's because these things are some "test taboos." More details at The Journal News.

    Posted by M17 at 09:05 AM

    More Potter Books, Less American Readers?

    While there isn't a direct link between Harry Potter and the amount Americans read, a new survey has this interesting bit:

    Fewer than half of adult Americans read novels, short stories, plays or poetry, according to a new survey released that details a dramatic decline in literary reading habits. The National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) report, "Reading at Risk," showed an overall drop of 10 percentage points - representing a loss of 20 million potential readers - from 1982 to 2002...

    Despite the much-touted influence of J.K. Rowling's "Harry Potter" books and Oprah Winfrey's Book Club in reviving reading among children and adults, the NEA survey showed the rate of decline in readers had actually accelerated from five percent to 14 percent since 1992.

    More from AFP via Yahoo! News.

    Posted by M17 at 08:52 AM

    New Interesting Ponderings Page Online

    After several months of collecting, we finally have enough questions to add to our new Interesting Ponderings page. Check it out at the link!

    Posted by Jasen at 07:48 AM | TrackBack

    Concert To Play Harry Potter Music

    For all you folks in Pleasanton, California, The Pleasanton Community Concert Band will be performing music from films including "Mary Poppins", "ET", and of course, "Harry Potter". Check out this link for more details.

    Posted by Jasen at 07:46 AM | TrackBack

    July 07, 2004

    Edinburgh University Awards Rowling With Degree

    From Scotsman:

    The multi-millionaire, who now lives in a Georgian mansion in the city with her husband and two children, was collecting one of the university’s highest accolades, the degree of doctor honoris causa.

    When her degree was announced in February, she said: “I am delighted and honoured to be receiving an honorary degree from the University of Edinburgh, my adopted home city.”

    The writer will pose with her scroll for photographers at 3.15pm after the ceremony in McEwan Hall, Bristo Square, a university spokeswoman said.

    iHP wishes congratulations to Ms. Rowling on her new degree!

    Posted by Jasen at 10:42 PM | TrackBack

    Just a Reminder...

    Just a reminder that USA readers can watch Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone on the ABC Family channel this Sunday, July 11, at 4:30PM Eastern/Pacific & 3:30 Central, and again at 8:00PM Eastern/Pacific & 7:00 Central. The movie will feature additional footage not shown in theaters!

    Posted by M17 at 07:36 PM

    Of Fads and Harry Potter

    In response to an earlier post this week about Jesse Scott, youth correspondent to The Lance Free-Star, who bashed Harry Potter fandom and all those associated with it, a new Minute Musings has been made to discuss his perspective on HP fans.

    As Scott says:

    On another note, "Harry Potter" is such a chick flick.

    There is not one normal male I've met who is obsessed with Mr. Magic the way the female population is.

    Do we have your attention? Bring it this way to Opinari.

    Posted by Jasen at 06:37 PM

    What's In A Name?

    From Daily Record:

    HARRY Potter author JK Rowling has admitted she gets most of her characters' names from phone directories, baby-naming books and even war memorials.

    The writer said she likes collecting unusual words and names.

    She explained: 'I take them from all sorts of different places. I really enjoy reading lists of them. For me, its like casting an eye over a pile of unwrapped presents.'

    She also revealed she never wastes words, as she'll use one of the first Potter chapters she ever wrote, but didn't use up till now, in the next book.

    Posted by Jasen at 03:15 PM

    Pirated PoA In Hong Kong

    Pirated DVDs of the latest Harry Potter movie are already on sale in Hong Kong days before the boy wizard officially arrives to cast his spell on local cinemas.

    Discs of ``Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban,'' some with Korean subtitles, were sold in a Hong Kong market for about $20 each (US$2.6), the South China Morning Post said Tuesday.

    Read more at Utusan Online.

    Posted by Jasen at 03:06 PM

    Harry Potter: "America's recent lame fad"

    So says Jesse Scott, a youth correspondent for The Free Lance-Star who offered his rather shortsighted views on Harry Potter in a recent opinion article:

    "There is not one normal male I've met who is obsessed with Mr. Magic the way the female population is. When "Potter" arrived, I hadn't heard so much female hype since "Little Women" came out in 1994.

    Why do various females love the movie-made geek, when they shove him aside in real life? If a realistic geek asked these females out on a date, the ladies would blow him off and tell him to go get a scoliosis examination."

    Scott concludes his article with the note, "My friends, the time will soon come when this "Harry Potter" garbage has no place in our society."

    Read more at the link above!
    Although, I'm not sure you'd really want to...

    Posted by iruhkoi at 09:05 AM

    More info on Chinese Ban on Potter

    iharrypotter.net first brought you this story three days ago, but as it hits the mainstream press we bring you more details on the Chinese ban of the Prisoner of Azkaban movie; from Sky News:

    Ten-year-old Yang Kun said that the first two movies were "frightening and really good" and rebutted the government's concerns, arguing that "Harry teaches kids to be brave and helps them solve their problems."

    Told that he would not be able to see the new Harry Potter film this summer, 14-year-old Yan Yajun was outraged. "I think that's wrong", he said. "They shouldn't stop kids from watching what they want to watch. Harry doesn't have a bad impact on kids; he teaches us things."

    Exactly how "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" might negatively influence Chinese children has not been explained by the State Administration of Radio, Film and Television the government bureau responsible for the ban.

    Harry Potter's young Chinese fans seem unlikely perpetrators of violent or anti-social acts. On a recent afternoon at the Xinhua Bookstore in downtown Beijing, primary school-aged children flocked around the shelves displaying all five Harry Potter books. A sales assistant attested that the books are top sellers.

    The children all avid readers, and, according to those parents present, good students seemed confused and worried by the suggestion that Harry Potter might be a negative influence on their development.

    Ten-year-old Yang Kun said that the first two movies were "frightening and really good" and rebutted the government's concerns, arguing that "Harry teaches kids to be brave and helps them solve their problems."

    Told that he would not be able to see the new Harry Potter film this summer, 14-year-old Yan Yajun was outraged. "I think that's wrong", he said. "They shouldn't stop kids from watching what they want to watch. Harry doesn't have a bad impact on kids; he teaches us things."

    Read more at the link above!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 08:55 AM

    July 06, 2004

    TIME For Kids Interviews Radcliffe

    On July 1, the mag spoke to Daniel Radcliffe about playing Harry in the films. Here's an excerpt:

    TFK: What’s it like to see yourself on screen?
    Daniel: It’s really weird. It’s very surreal, because I’m, like, 30 feet high.

    TFK: How many times did you see the first two movies?
    Daniel: We have a ritual each year. The first time I see this third film, it will just be me, David Heyman, my mom and my dad. Then I’ll have a screening for all of my family and friends. And then I’ll go to the premieres. There are two premieres. So I see each film about four times. It gets very tiring after a while.

    Read the rest here!

    Posted by Jasen at 12:50 PM | TrackBack

    FAQ Updated At JKR.com

    Thanks to reader Ashley for informing us that the FAQ poll at J.K. Rowling's official site about a certain Mark Evans has been answered.

    Posted by Jasen at 12:41 PM | TrackBack

    Julie Walters a Powerful Person

    Actress Julie Walters (aka Molly Weasley in the Potter movies) top the list of the 40 most powerful figures in TV drama.

    The Birmingham-born actress heads a top 40 compiled by the Radio Times.

    David Jason, James Nesbitt and Dame Helen Mirren are among the big names on the list. But a panel of industry experts voted Walters, 54, "top of the heap". Last year she won a Bafta for her role as a middle-aged actress who bedded a toyboy in The Wife of Bath, one of the BBC's updates of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales.

    "Her track record of success across different channels is all the more remarkable for being combined with a buoyant film career, which guarantees her position as an above-the-title name who can deliver critical acclaim and ratings success," the magazine said.

    Source: ic Birmingham

    Posted by M17 at 12:39 PM

    Latest Opinari Mailbag Question Responses

    We've posted the responses we received from the latest Opinari Mailbag, so you can check those out and the newest Mailbag question right here!

    Posted by Jasen at 12:11 PM | TrackBack

    Box Office Update

    This weekend in the UK, PoA conjured up 1.2 million pounds, bringing its total to 42 million, but the film dropped to second place right after "Shrek 2".

    Meanwhile in the US, "Spider-Man 2" (Spidey you rule!!) took over the box office with another $22 million Sunday, with PoA taking in $1.7 million in seventh spot, bringing its domestic total to $223 million.

    Posted by Jasen at 11:35 AM | TrackBack

    July 05, 2004

    New Role For Radcliffe?

    Daniel Radcliffe has apparently been tipped to star in a planned film about the Second World War. No official confirmation has been made at this time.

    Posted by Jasen at 07:23 PM | TrackBack

    David Thewlis To Set Sail In "The New World"

    Christian Bale (BATMAN BEGINS), David Thewlis (HARRY POTTER AND THE PRISONER OF AZKABAN), Noah Taylor (TOMB RAIDER) and Q'orianka Kilcher have all accepted roles in THE NEW WORLD, the 17th century-set drama/adventure to be directed by Terrence Malick. The film follows the events after the founding of the Jamestown colony in 1607 and the friction between the New World settlers and the Native American people.

    Sounds interesting. More from The Hollywood Reporter.

    Posted by Jasen at 03:48 PM

    Capitalist Neo-Liberal or An Anti-Globalist Lefty?

    The New Zealand Herald has this interesting article:

    PARIS - In the sober columns of Le Monde, a debate is raging which slices to the heart of the political and philosophical concerns of the early 21st century.

    Is Harry Potter a capitalist neo-liberal? Or is he an anti-globalist lefty, concerned by the fate of the humble and the oppressed?

    The opinion pages of the centre-left, French daily - more often occupied with human cloning or Third World debt - have, over the last three weeks, been examining, in high Marxist-structuralist manner, the political subtext of the works of J. K. Rowling.

    The Great Debate was launched on June 4 by Ilias Yocaris, of the Institut Universitaire de Formation de Maitres (secondary teacher training school) in Nice.

    Yocaris, one of the people responsible for training the next generation of French teachers, complained in Le Monde that the "fantasy universe of Harry Potter is ... a capitalist universe".

    The five Harry Potter books - enormously successful in French translation - are stiffed with "neo-liberal stereotypes" which caricature approvingly the "excesses of the Anglo-Saxon social model", Yocaris said.

    Thus all representatives of the state (the Ministry of Magic) are lampooned as ridiculous, or incompetent or sinister. Harry goes to a "private" school, whose "micro-society" is a "pitiless jungle" which glorifies "individualism, competition and a cult of violence".

    Public institutions are unable to protect individuals: Harry Potter and his friends find that they have to break the magical state-imposed rules constantly to protect themselves from evil forces.

    Yocaris says that the Harry Potter books are an example of the totalitarian universe imagined by George Orwell, come to life. "Capitalism is now trying to shape, after its own taste, not only the real world, but the imaginary world of its consumer-citizens."

    Now Le Monde has published an equally erudite reply to Yocaris' thesis.

    Far from being a capitalist lackey, Harry Potter is, in fact, the first fictional hero of the anti-globalist, anti-free market, pro-Third World, "Seattle"generation, according to Isabelle Smadja.

    More at the link!

    Posted by Jasen at 03:38 PM | TrackBack

    The Ministry of Magic is NOW OPEN!

    iharrypotter.net is extremely excited to announce its latest feature, the MINISTRY OF MAGIC. After weeks of behind-the-scenes development, it's finally online and available for your use; click here to navigate over to a fully functional replica of the Ministry of Magic floor plan and view information about every department and known ministry employee.

    Watch out for flying memos, and don't forget the passcode!

    And after your visit, be sure to give us your feedback in our discussion forums! Speaking of which, as part of the release of the Ministry of Magic Interact feature, we've also got a completely redesigned forum theme---check it out!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 09:40 AM

    New Wizard of the Month At JKR.com

    Thanks to Alex for letting us know that JKRowling.com has up a new Wizard of the Month, who's reminiscent of a certain Kiss band member:

    Donaghan Tremlett, band player with the popular wizarding band The Weird Sisters

    Posted by Jasen at 08:07 AM

    July 04, 2004

    New British Adult Edition Covers

    CBBC Newsround reports that Bloomsbury, which publishes the British versions of the Harry Potter books, will be releasing new "Adult" edition Potter novels featuring new covers. The article says that the changes to the covers are "to make them look more like the recent Order of the Phoenix one."

    The new versions are expected to be on sale July 10, 2004. See them at the link above! Thanks to Darkmark for the tip!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 08:09 PM

    Book 6 Domain Names Registered

    CBBC Newsround reports that domain names related to the title of Book 6 have been registered by companies tied to JK Rowling, including Warner Bros., Seabottom Productions Limited, and Lightmaker (the company that runs www.jkrowling.com).

    Domain names that have been registered include harrypotterandthehalfbloodprince.com, harrypotterandthehalfbloodprince.net and halfbloodprince.org. Read more at the link above!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 06:15 PM

    Penn State Hosts Potter Potions Science Program

    from PennState Live:

    The first session of Penn State's Action Potential Science Experience, "Another Wizard's World: Potions," wraps up today (July 2) in the chemistry department of the Eberly College of Science. Registrations are being accepted for a new Harry Potter-themed program, "The Adventure of the Apprentice's Stone," which will take place July 12-16 and again July 26-30. Information is available on the Web at http://www.ScienceCamps.psu.edu

    More than 90 children, aged 9 to 14, already are enrolled in the first session, which allows Harry Potter fans to experience these stories first-hand. The program is back by popular demand this year after more than 130 young people filled the camp last year. Children will create all kinds of potions-slimy, gooey and fizzy-learn about levitation, and mix their own special elixirs and magical brews.

    Read more at the link above!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 07:42 AM

    Stephen Fry Worried About Book 6

    Actor and narrator of the British versions of the Potter books Stephen Fry is "anxious JK Rowling's next Harry Potter book will be too long for him to narrate."

    Ireland On-Line reports that Fry "isn't interested in the new book's plot, but he's dreading the amount of time it will take for him to record, if it's as "meaty" as the author has suggested."

    "I would have my legs cut off if I gave anything away. But I think we can probably say that this next one is probably not going to be longer than the Order of the phoenix - 29 hours of listening if you buy the tapes or CDs. That's a lot of studio time reading!"

    In fact, whenever I see Jo Rowling, I've just become completely banal and vulgar - I'm not at all interested. I don't care what the story is, who lives, who dies, just 'How long is it going to be?"

    Posted by iruhkoi at 07:38 AM

    China Bans Azkaban Movie for Summer

    from The Seattle Times:

    ...amid growing concern it is losing touch with an increasingly rebellious youth, the government recently announced a series of steps to bolster social, ethical and moral standards among underage Chinese. (...)

    The government has also banned the release of all new foreign films — including "Spider-Man 2," the third installment of the "Harry Potter" series and "Shrek 2" — during the school break this summer...

    Read more at the link above!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 07:17 AM

    "Knight Bus" Replica Wins Best Looking Boat Award

    A boat race in Lake Ellyn, Illinois inspired some to design a replica of the Knight Bus; from the Daily Herald:

    After seven gallons of purple paint, 300 sheets of cardboard and a couple of weeks of hard work, the triple-decker "Harry Potter Knight Bus" rolled up to Lake Ellyn Saturday ready to race.

    The bus, manned by 40 kids and adults in capes, took to the water with 62 other boats in Glen Ellyn's 12th annual cardboard boat regatta.

    Hundreds turned out to see the boats attempt to navigate a two-turn, 200-yard course without sinking.

    What happened? Visit the link above to read more!

    Posted by iruhkoi at 07:07 AM

    July 03, 2004

    Ministry Census Results: Of David Thewlis As Lupin

    The results from the previous Census:

    What did you think of David Thewlis as Professor Lupin in PoA?

    40 % 27 % 20 % 5 % 8 %
    Responses Votes
    I loved him! He was the PERFECT Lupin! 989
    He was great! 674
    He was OK. 490
    Nope, didn't like him. 117
    Ugh! Why'd they pick this guy?! 191
    Total Votes: 2461

    Remember to vote in the newest one to your right!

    Posted by Jasen at 05:11 PM

    Droobles, Jelly Slugs, and Fizzing Whizbees

    From The Olympian:

    Now wizards everywhere can enjoy the same kind of candy that Harry Potter and his friends eat. CAP Candy, a division of Hasbro, has conjured up an array of sweets, including Harry Potter Acid Caps (so sour they hurt), Droobles Best Blowing Gum (they turn your mouth blue), Ice Mice (a sugary mouse inside a berry-flavored cube), Jelly Slugs (gummy candy in four flavors), Fizzing Whizbees (popping candy) and Bertie Bott's Beans (in every flavor, including soap). Prices range from 99 cents to $3.99. Look for them at groceries, convenience stores and mass merchandisers.

    Posted by Jasen at 03:05 PM

    Question 3: What Is Book 6's Title?

    In this week's "Weekly World News Quiz" from BBC News, Harry Potter is the subject of one of the questions. See if you know the answer at the link (And if you don't, maybe you should hang around iHP more often :p)!

    Posted by Jasen at 03:04 PM

    July 02, 2004

    GoF Movie News

    Props for GoF are being made to order. Read about it here Thanks to The Snitch for the scoop. Could this mean The World Cup is back? We can only hope.

    Posted by Deb at 04:10 PM

    Half Blood Prince - The Movie

    Do they really think we would buy this one? If you need a good laugh, read on. It is being rumored that Michael Moore of Fahrenheit 9/11 has accepted the offer to produce the 6th movie. Read about it here

    Posted by Deb at 03:39 PM

    "Do Not Disturb" Sign Returns to JKRowling.com

    Just as an interesting note, the door at JKRowling.com which had once revealed the title of Book 6 is now locked again.

    EDIT by Jasen: This can only mean one thing: something new will surely be coming soon! As Rowling said herself earlier this week, "...If you continue to exercise patience, you will find that the Do Not Disturb Door opens again… and again… giving you further hints about book six."

    Posted by iruhkoi at 11:17 AM

    PoA Arrives In IMAX Today!

    The movie hits the bigger screen today in most IMAX theaters, but check to see if it's playing at yours.

    Posted by Jasen at 10:43 AM

    Book 6 Closer Than We Thought?

    Dahlia points us to this article from noinvite.com, which has up a curious tidbit, saying that fans can expect to see the sixth book within 4-5 months. This is pure rumor for right now, so take it with a grain of salt.

    Posted by Jasen at 10:39 AM

    July 01, 2004

    New Books 6 and 7 Rumors Update!

    Many kudos goes out to iHP staff member, M17, the Book 6 and Book 7 rumor pages have been updated with all new theories and the like. Thanks to all our readers who wrote in!

    Also, don't forget to check out the reinstated Miscellaneous Facts page!

    More updates yet to come.

    Edit by M17: The rumor speculation continues! And now that we know the title of the 6th book, there are plenty of theories floating around. Do you want to share any rumors? You'll find the instructions & email address at the links above. Keep sending them in!

    Posted by Jasen at 06:51 PM

    Factory Bootlegging PoA Shutdown

    Thousands of bootleg DVDs, Playstation games and MP3 music discs were recovered from the address in Hyde Park following a raid.

    It is estimated the seized merchandise, which included copies of Harry Potter and the Prisoner Of Azkaban currently being shown in cinemas, has a street value of around £50,000.

    Read on at Leeds Today.

    Posted by Jasen at 01:55 PM

    HP Movie Production Designer To Receive Award

    Yahoo! has this:

    Three-time Academy Award-winning Production Designer Stuart Craig will receive the Hollywood Film Festival's Hollywood Art Director of the Year Award at the Festival's October 18 awards ceremony. His selection was determined by a recommendation of the Council of the Art Directors Guild (ADG). Craig is the Production Designer of all three Harry Potter films, including the current release, "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban," as well as the fourth now in production, "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire."

    Posted by Jasen at 01:10 PM

    John Cleese Prefers Bond Over Harry

    From IOL:

    John Cleese prefers his role as Q in the James Bond franchise to his work as Nearly Headless Nick in the Harry Potter movies - as he enjoys having a greater input in the script.

    The 64-year-old actor prefers working on movies like The World is Not Enough to Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban as he is given free rein to add more humour to the dialogue.

    Cleese explains: "Bond is brilliant as you are allowed to have a say in the script, but with Harry Potter everything is in the hands of the special-effects team.

    "No one knows what's going on except them - not even the director because he doesn't know if the take works."

    Posted by Jasen at 01:07 PM

    PoA Nominated for Teen Choice Awards

    Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban has been nominated for the Best Drama/Action-Adventure Movie Award at the 2003 Teen Choice Awards, an even sponsored by Teen People magazine. Vote here. Voting ends in August, and the show will air August 11th, at 8 p.m. EST.

    Posted by at 10:03 AM

    Book 6 Title Hoaxer Interview

    In an interview with HPANA, the 19 year old college student responsible for the international hoax stating that the book 6 title is Harry Potter Pillar of Storgé offers his apologies to Harry Potter fans around the world and to J.K. Rowling herself. In addition, the prankster explains his intentions of his hoax, how he accomplished his feat, and what he expected to occur.

    With the title Harry Potter Pillar of Storgé proven false, J.K. Rowling released the offical title of book 6 as Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince on her website, http://www.jkrowling.co.uk/

    An excerpt from the interview:

    Do you have any official connection to JKR, Warner Bros., or the book publishers?

    No, I have no connection to them whatsoever.

    What made you think of doing this, and specifically, the timing of it?
    I had recently finished a re-reading of Order of the Phoenix and it got me excited about the Harry Potter series again. As a result of that excitement, I stumbled upon JKR's website for the first time and was fascinated by the unopenable door. I also thought it was great that she was dispelling some of the rumors about the series. Somehow I put two and two together and the hoax clicked in my mind.

    The timing of the event was never planned; it was simple dumb luck on my part that I released the hoax at the start of a weekend so that it [became] more effective.

    How did you do it?
    A hobby of mine is computer graphics/video editing, so I knew I could produce a realistic video. I realized that this was exactly what I needed to make the hoax believable.

    I used two programs: Adobe Photoshop and Adobe After Effects. In Photoshop I edited and manipulated pictures from JKR's site, and in After Effects I animated them into the finished video. I did not use [Macromedia] Flash at all. The blue bars (see image) at the bottom and top are a result of me changing the aspect ratio of the video without distorting it so that I could compress it into an MPEG file. I whipped the video up in about two hours.

    As far as the "message" was concerned, I just tried to mimic JKR's style as much as possible. I came up with the title Pillar of Storgé, trying to formulate something with a hidden meaning that people would be able to figure out. It's an ugly title, but I'm quite fond of it.

    Posted by at 09:49 AM