Harry Potter is returning in a big way in 2016. Over the summer, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child hit bookstores and, in typical Potter fashion, was gone as soon as it hit store shelves. And for the film fans it gets even better. Nearly a decade after author J.K. Rowling’s final last Harry Potter novel was published and five years after the final Harry Potter film, fans will return to the wizarding world this November with Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
In preparation for the new film, Warner Brothers has sent all 8 previous Harry Potter films back into theaters in IMAX. You can see the films at your leisure for only $6 each, or you can spend the day with Harry, Ron, and Hermione with a $20 day pass, or the $30 event pass which gets you in any time for the week.
My son and I went this past Saturday night for a double-shot of Prisoner of Azkaban and Goblet of Fire, the third and fourth films in the series. We saw the 6:30/9:45pm shows. The theater was packed with Potter fans, some with blankets and pillows. I asked and found that some fans were there since noon on the day pass. Others left after Azkaban and arrived back before Goblet with bags of takeout.
To make each film feel special, the cast members of Fantastic Beasts gave a newly filmed introduction before each movie. Oscar-winner Eddie Redmayne (Newt Scamander), Katherine Waterston (Porpentina Goldstein), Alison Sudol (Queenie Goldstein), and Dan Fogler (Jacob Kowalski) sat and discussed the upcoming prequel film. Before Goblet of Fire, they gabbed over which challenge in the Triwizard Tournament they would complete in. This was followed by a short behind-the-scenes glance at Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them featuring commentary from the Queen of the Wizarding World herself, J.K. Rowling, as well as director David Yates.
Potter fans have until Thursday, October 20th to catch their favorite films in the series on IMAX screens. Parts 3 and 4 were particularly great, especially since they are the ones that introduced audiences to some of the our favorite characters in the series, Professors Lupin and Moody as Defense Against the Dark Arts teachers (David Thewlis and Brendan Gleeson), as well as Harryâ€™s godfather Sirius Black (Gary Oldman), and of course â€œHe Who Must Not Be Namedâ€ himself, Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes). The crowd giggled when Edward Cullen himself, Robert Pattinson, debuted on screen as Cedric Diggory in Goblet Of Fire. And there were also moments of deep sadness watching the late great Alan Rickman portray Prof. Severus Snape, a role that endeared him to legions of fans of all ages.
J.K. Rowlingâ€™s Harry Potter universe is one of the highest grossing franchises to ever hit bookstores and movie theaters alike. The next adventure in the Potter-verse, Fantastic Beast and Where to Find Them, hits theaters on November 18, 2016 in IMAX. Check out fandango.com or imax.com for info on where you can catch the Potter movie marathon.