The much-awaited Harry Potter reunion began streaming on Amazon Prime Video on January 1. It brought back several stars such as Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, Gary Oldman, Tom Felton, Jason Isaacs, Ralph Fiennes, Evanna Lynch, Matthew Lewis, Mark Williams and Helena Bonham Carter, who reminisced about the iconic franchise that continues to enchant fans.
The 102-minutes episode brings together Daniel Radcliffe, who played the titular character in the film series and Emma Watson and Rupert Grint, who portrayed the roles of his best friends Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley. The movie delves into their journey as students of Hogwarts, a school of witchcraft and wizardry.
f the beloved Harry Potter series have reunited to mark the 20th anniversary of the release of the first film — Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone.
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The special reunion episode, titled Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts, released on HBO Max on the first day of the new year. In India, fans of the movie series, which is based on bestselling books by JK Rowling, can stream the episode on Amazon Prime.
The special episode also features Tom Felton, who played Harry Potter’s nemesis Draco Malfoy in the movie series, and Bonnie Wright, who portrayed Ginny Weasley — Harry Potter’s love interest.
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Crucial cast member was missing. Michael Gambon, who played Albus Dumbledore in six films, after taking over from the late Richard Harris, didn’t appear in the reunion special at all, beyond footage from the films. In fact, he was barely mentioned in the episode, which led fans to wonder why he had been ‘completely snubbed’.
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Fire alarm at Hogwarts
There’s a beautiful scene in 2005’s Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire where the other magical schools arrive to compete in the Triwizard Tournament held at Hogwarts. Hundreds of lit candles hang magically in the air. But in the special, Radcliffe reveals those were real candles — or at least some were — and they began burning through their ropes and falling.
Hermione had a crush on Draco
Actor Emma Watson, who played Hermione, admits in the special she had a crush on Tom Felton, who played the Potter gang’s nemesis, Draco Malfoy. She “just fell in love with him” when he was asked to draw God in an on-set tutoring class, and Felton drew a girl wearing a backward cap on a skateboard.
From then on, “I used to come in every day and look for his number on the call sheet,” Watson said. “It was number seven, and if his name was on the call sheet, it was an extra exciting day.”
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Felton learned of her crush, but he was three years older than Watson, and nothing romantic ever developed.
When Harry met David
Chris Columbus, who directed the first two Potter films, couldn’t find anyone to play Harry Potter until he watched a BBC miniseries of Charles Dickens’ David Copperfield. The young actor playing David was 10-year-old Daniel Radcliffe in his acting debut.
It wasn’t an easy road to hire him, though, as his parents didn’t want young Dan to commit to a seven-film series, especially since at the time it was thought the films would be made in America. But as we all know, Radcliffe signed on, and the rest is magical history.
“I was a really happy kid who had a really haunted quality,” Radcliffe says with a laugh.
Draco and his dad
Jason Isaacs didn’t want to play Draco Malfoy’s dad, Lucius — instead he auditioned for the role of Gilderoy Lockhart. Asked to read Lucius Malfoy’s lines instead, he was irritated, so read them “through gritted teeth and deeply bitter,” Isaacs says with a laugh in the special. Perhaps that helped him get the role.
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And Isaacs said that while he loved young Tom Felton, who plays his son, Draco, he was “as unpleasant as could be” to him on set, trying to set up the cruelty that ruled the Draco-Lucius relationship. Once though, he accidentally went too far, smacking Felton’s hand with a cane and not realizing the cane had sharp teeth that cut Felton’s hand. (The scene was deleted from the movie, but can be watched as an extra feature.)