ENTERTAINMENT
Follow the Entertainment section on Facebook!
Movies Now
ENTERTAINMENT MOVIES Movies Now

J.K. Rowling's new Harry Potter story: Could it see the big screen?

J.K. Rowling has said she's done with Harry Potter, but she hasn't left the wizarding world entirely
Could J.K. Rowling's new Harry Potter story translate to the big screen?
Judging from the buzz generated by J.K. Rowling's new Harry Potter story, Pottermania knows no cure

J.K. Rowling sent shock waves through muggledom and the wizarding world alike Tuesday when she published a new short story catching up with an adult Harry Potter on her Pottermore website.

In addition to filling in some details about Potter's life in his 30s — his hair streaked with silver, sporting a new scar on his cheek, wife and children in tow — the 1,500-word story certainly whet the appetites of Potter fanatics yearning for more of the Boy Who Lived.

But could Rowling's latest dispatch ever form the basis of, or get the ball rolling for, a new Harry Potter movie?

The answer may well depend on Rowling herself. In the past, the author has indicated that she won't be writing any more books about Harry, and a spokesperson reiterated as much to the Bookseller on Tuesday. Even so, she has proved reluctant to get out of the Harry Potter business entirely.

The financial incentive of bringing Harry back to the big screen is obvious: The existing "Harry Potter" movies were massive successes, grossing a combined $7.7 billion at the worldwide box office. And judging from the buzz generated by Rowling's latest story, Pottermania knows no cure.

What party actually controls the Pottermore film rights remains a question. Sony developed the website with Rowling, but a spokesman says the firm does not hold any film rights to the property. Warner Bros. bought rights to the original Potter books, but it’s unclear if the deal included language for potential spinoffs. If it was Rowling herself, she could theoretically shop a potential Pottermore movie elsewhere, though given her close relationship with Warner Bros., it’s likely they would have the first crack at it. A spokesperson for Warner Bros. could not immediately provide details about the status of the studio's "Pottermore" rights.

Assuming all parties involved could reach a financial agreement, there's also the question of whether a new movie would make creative sense. Rowling's new story seems like it would be a rather thin framework to hang an entire movie on. Written from the perspective of the poison-penned gossip columnist Rita Skeeter, it glimpses Harry and his friends and family at the Quidditch World Cup, but doesn't offer much more than surface observations and a few teases.

Harry, for one, "is sporting a nasty cut over his right cheekbone" — the handiwork of a new villain? Perhaps, but there's not much more to go on. And many of the other trappings of Harry's grown-up life were previously revealed in the epilogue to 2011's "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2."

Of course, Rowling could presumably flesh out the story of adult Harry and the gang further, should the muse speak to her.

There's also the question of whether the original cast members would be interested in reprising their roles, particularly Daniel Radcliffe (Harry), Emma Watson (Hermione) and Rupert Grint (Ron). Radcliffe told reporters on Tuesday that he's "inclined to say no" to picking up a wand again, though he also said he hadn't read the story yet but intends to.

If and when he does, he might find some of the themes resonating with him. In the Pottermore story, Harry and his compatriots are reluctant celebrities mobbed by crowds, and they can't seem to escape the shadow of the exploits that made them famous in their youth. Sound familiar?

If Radcliffe would be willing to reconsider, there's one particularly tantalizing line in the story: Skeeter asks: "Is the Chosen One embroiled in fresh mysteries that will one day explode upon us all, plunging us into a new age of terror and mayhem?"

Potter fans can only hope.

In the meantime, Rowling has yet to close the door on the larger world of Harry Potter. She is currently adapting her fictional Potter-themed textbook "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" into a trilogy of films for Warner Bros., which will mark her screenwriting debut.

Follow @ogettell for movie news on Twitter.

Copyright © 2015, Los Angeles Times
Related Content
  • How do we love/hate Steve Jobs? Let us count the ways

    How do we love/hate Steve Jobs? Let us count the ways

    The death of Steve Jobs at the age of 56 in 2010 triggered an unusually high emotional response from people — especially for a CEO. The reaction over the loss of the creative soul of Apple Inc. was more like what we would expect to see for a pop star than a titan of industry.

  • In 'Pan,' Levi Miller takes an 'awesome' trip to Neverland

    In 'Pan,' Levi Miller takes an 'awesome' trip to Neverland

    Early last year, about 4,000 boys ages 11 to 13 gathered in London's Wembley Arena to demonstrate that they had what it took to play a perpetual child. British filmmaker Joe Wright and casting director Dixie Chassay were holding an open call for their Neverland film, "Pan," and they hoped a worthy...

  • Anne Hathaway, Nancy Meyers say 'The Intern' evolved from 'Baby Boom'

    Anne Hathaway, Nancy Meyers say 'The Intern' evolved from 'Baby Boom'

    Nancy Meyers wrote and directed "The Intern," a comedy opening Sept. 25 in which Anne Hathaway plays Jules, the young founder of a thriving Internet startup who hires a 70-year-old intern, played by Robert De Niro. Meyers, who also wrote and directed the movies "It's Complicated" and "Something's...

  • Heady days for Jessica Chastain as 'The Martian' and 'Crimson Peak' loom

    Heady days for Jessica Chastain as 'The Martian' and 'Crimson Peak' loom

    "You caught me at the best time — I'm so relaxed," Jessica Chastain said on a recent afternoon, speaking by phone from her home in New York. The actress had just returned the previous night from a two-week trip to Jamaica, a rare respite from an otherwise hectic schedule.

  • Making 'Everest' was a tall order for filmmakers

    Making 'Everest' was a tall order for filmmakers

    On the set of most $60-million movie productions, stars run their lines in tricked-out trailers. Bleary-eyed assistants are on call to fetch chai lattes and quinoa salads. Actors sit in fancy folding monogrammed chairs.

  • Joseph Gordon-Levitt mentored by daredevil Philippe Petit for 'The Walk'

    Joseph Gordon-Levitt mentored by daredevil Philippe Petit for 'The Walk'

    Talk to Joseph Gordon-Levitt about Philippe Petit, the French daredevil who walked a high wire between the World Trade Center towers in 1974, and the conversation will wind its way through Paris (the actor's favorite city) and its cinema culture, the connection between wire walking and acting ("both...

Comments
Loading
72°