Here are 5 interesting facts about the Harry Potter saga: we bet you don’t know them?
The editorial staff of Freaking News received a preview of the video game Hogwarts Legacy, which promises to bring fans of the saga of JK Rowling in the enchanted world of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and for the occasion we decided to publish on these channels a special dedicated to Harry Potter and the 5 Curiosities that you (almost) certainly do not know about the saga films.
5) The true origin of the Dementors
The idea for Dementors, while writing the Harry Potter novels, came to writer JK Rowling thinking back to her struggle with depression.
The author’s mother died of multiple sclerosis when she was only 45 years old, and through the fearsome creatures that the Ministry of Magic has long employed in Azkaban prison Rowling wanted to condense all the dark feelings that that bereavement caused her to experience in real life.
Not surprisingly, in the world of Harry Potter, Dementors “take away all the happy thoughts” of their victims until they suck out their souls.
4) No breaks on set for child actors
During the filming of the Harry Potter movies, the many young extras called to the set to play the pupils of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry did not have much time to dawdle and enjoy the production’s incredible sets, quite the contrary.
When required by the scene, in fact, they were ‘invited’ to do the real homework assigned by their real teachers at their real school.Next time you watch the Harry Potter movies, know that many of the kids you see hunched over books in your screens are studying for real!
3) The first Hogwarts
Initially, Chris Columbus and the production of Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone had chosen the Canterbury Cathedral as filming location for some Hogwarts scenes, but the Dean of Canterbury objected strongly, ruling that it would not be appropriate for a Christian church to accommodate the creation (and subsequent promotion) of pagan images.
The production therefore fell back on Gloucester Cathedral, which instead was happy to accommodate the film, because the dean of Gloucester, Reverend Nicholas Bury, was an avid fan of the books. However, in this case it was the people of Gloucester who objected: hundreds were the letters, sent to local newspapers, in which they argued that allowing Hollywood to use the sacred grounds of the cathedral for a film would have been considered blasphemy, and that locals would physically prevent the crew from crossing its borders.
At the moment of truth, however, only one protester showed up.
2) From Mexico City to Hogwarts.
The director Alfonso Cuarón – 4-time Academy Award winner, two for directing and again for cinematography and editing, as well as record holder in nominations having received at least one nomination in no fewer than seven different award categories – revolutionized the Harry Potter film saga with The Prisoner of Azkaban, but before signing what is almost unanimously considered the best film in the series he had never read the Harry Potter novels, let alone seen the first two films, directed by Chris Columbus.
When he was offered the job (it was JK Rowling who suggested it, because she had fallen in love with his second feature film, The Little Princess), Cuarón was initially hesitant to accept (The author was coming off the success of Y tu mama tambien and was preparing to shoot his masterpiece The Children of Men, which he had started working on in 2001 and would be released in 2006, two years after Azkaban) But he eventually let Guillermo Del Toro convince him., one of his best friends from long before fame (actually, the duo is a trio, because the fraternal friendship also includes Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu), who called him one day and said, “Don’t be stupid, read the books now and go make that movie“.
Signed the contract and started work on The Prisoner of Azkaban, for Cuarón’s time came to meet his three main actors.: In order to break the ice, and at the same time lower himself further into the world of Harry Potter, the Mexican author asked Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint (high schoolers at the time) to write an essay each on their respective characters, Harry Potter, Hermione, and Ron, recounting them in the first person as if Cuarón had been a new Hogwarts teacher for the trio to meet.
Emma Watson, in perfect Hermione style, exaggerated a bit and delivered a nearly twenty-page essay; Daniel Radcliffe, cast in the part of Harry, wrote a simple one-page summary, timely concise and comprehensive. Rupert Grint, on the other hand, was so good at playing Ron that his essay never delivered.
01) Harry Potter before JK Rowling?
A bespectacled English boy gets a pet owl and accepts his destiny, that of joining a secret world of wizards who hide from humans in plain sight, for a wonderful story told by one of the world’s most successful fantasy authors.
We are talking of course about JK Rowling’s Harry Potter, who published the first novel in her saga in 1997, but also Neil Gaiman’s The Books of Magic, far less famous DC Comics comic that saw the light of day in 1990: the points of contact between the two works are different (the comic’s protagonist is Tim Hunter) but Gaiman himself – dad of The Sandman, American Gods, Coraline and many, many others – has dismissed ‘conspiracy theories’ about possible plagiarism on Rowling’s part, siding with him first among fans of the Hogwarts world.
However, if you have worn out the Harry Potter novels by dint of rereading them and knowing the films by heart, try giving this forgotten little DC Comics gem a chance: originated as a spin-off of the masterpiece The Sandman, and who knows, someday Netflix may bring out a TV adaptation.