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Image / Living / Culture

The ‘Harry Potter’ cast are even more excited about the upcoming reunion than we are


By Sarah Finnan
21st Dec 2021

HBO

The ‘Harry Potter’ cast are even more excited about the upcoming reunion than we are

‘Return to Hogwarts’ will be released on HBO Max on January 1 2022 and now there's even a heartwarming new trailer

The stars of the Harry Potter movie franchise will reunite for a one-off special this New Year’s Day. Coming together to celebrate the first film’s 20th anniversary, much of the original cast will be in attendance at the televised event including Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint. 

Expected to take a similar format to the Friends reunion that aired earlier this year, the special will be filmed at the Warner Bros Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter, where much of the original staging, including Diagon Alley, the Griffindor dormitory, The Great Hall and potions class all still stand, as well as at a number of other locations around the world. Breaking out the time turner one last time, the cast is inviting fans to join them on a trip down memory lane as they relive some of the best onset and behind-the-scenes moments. 

Following on from a short teaser in mid-November, HBO is now sharing the full trailer, and it’s giving us all the warm fuzzy feels as the main stars head back to their old haunts. Describing it as “a magical first-person journey through one of the most beloved film franchises of all time,” It looks set to bring on the tears as well as last young and old talk about what the films and their time on set meant to them.

Explaining why the moment means so much to her personally, Emma Watson posted a lovely tribute to the movies on her own Instagram account, admitting that “Hermione (still is) [her] favourite fictional character of all time”. 

“Harry Potter was my home, my family, my world,” she captioned a photo of herself with Daniel and Rupert – the series’ trio of heroes. “I think a journalist once said it was irritating how many times during an interview I mentioned how lucky I was and started counting… BUT I DAMN WELL KNEW!!! And still know.

“I am proud not just of what we as [a] group contributed as actors to the franchise but also as the children that became young adults that walked that path,” she confessed. “I look at my fellow cast members now and I am just so proud of who everyone has become as people. I am proud we were kind to each other that we supported one another and that we held up something meaningful.

“Thank you to the fans that have continued to show their support well after the last chapter closed. The magic of the world wouldn’t exist without you. Thank you for fighting to make it such an inclusive and loving place.”

Daniel Radcliffe also voiced his joy at how much people love the movies, noting that he finds it extremely heartwarming to hear that people often turn to them when “hungover and feeling really crappy about themselves”. “The time in most people’s lives when they discovered it meant that it has an incredibly important place in a lot of people’s childhoods, and they still feel very protective over it,” the actor said in a recent BBC documentary marking the film’s 20th anniversary.

“One of my favourite fates that we could never have ever imagined for the Harry Potter films but that I have been told by several friends is that they are fantastic when people are hungover and feeling really crappy about themselves. They will just watch back-to-back a few movies and it just takes them to a place of warmth and comfort.

“That is so lovely to me,” he continued. “That is the real world effect that a film can have on someone’s life. I think that is great.”

Other cast members signed up to partake include Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Ralph Fiennes, Gary Oldman, Imelda Staunton, Tom Felton, James Phelps, Oliver Phelps, Mark Williams, Bonnie Wright, Alfred Enoch, Matthew Lewis, Chris Columbus, and many more.

Even our own Evanna Lynch will join the fun, though she’s keen not to draw too much attention to herself lest producers remember she wasn’t actually in the first film and disinvite her. 

“Please can we agree not to remind production [that] I wasn’t actually in Philosopher’s Stone and was still in my Harry Potter themed bedroom drooling over their posters 20 years ago. I’m trying so hard to play it cool about getting this invite!”, she joked. 

Series creator JK Rowling does not appear to be involved in the project, with her absence likely down to the controversial comments she made about the trans community last year. 

Return to Hogwarts will premiere on HBO Max on January 1 2022, with an international release date “coming soon” according to the US network. Great to see the band getting back together as Matt Lewis (a.k.a. Neville Longbottom) put it. Even after all this time? Always.