[Intro music begins]
Andrew: This week's episode of MuggleCast is brought to you by Audible.com, the internet's leading provider of audiobooks with more than 75,000 downloadable titles across all types of literature including fiction, non-fiction, and periodicals. For a free audiobook of your choice, go to AudiblePodcast.com/MuggleCast.
On August 7th, 2005:
[A clip from MuggleCast Episode #1 plays]
Andrew: This is MuggleCast, MuggleNet.com's brand new podcasting feature: Episode 1 for August 7th, 2005. If you haven't finished reading Book 6 yet please do not listen to this podcast, as we do talk about several different spoilers.
["Sunrise," from "Also Sprach Zarathustra," op. 30 by Richard Strauss plays]
Andrew: Now, this is MuggleCast, MuggleNet's long-time podcasting feature, Episode 200 for June 9th, 2010.
Andrew: If you haven't finished reading Book 7 yet, please do not listen to this podcast as we do talk about several different spoilers.
[Music continues and plays out]
[A version of "Hedwig's Theme" plays]
David Heyman: Hello, this is David Heyman, and I'm the producer of the Harry Potter films, and this is MuggleCast!
[Music continues, followed by silence]
[Show music begins]
Eric: So first things first, Andrew. Micah and I, we showed up this morning on Skype to record our 200th episode of MuggleCast, and we were talking for a little while, and it occurred to us that we were just - we were missing something - the two of us - at first - we thought a little bit about what it was, and...
Andrew: The magic?
Eric: No, no, no, no. The magic was there because it's our 200th episode.
Andrew: Heart and soul? The blood and sweat? [Laughs]
Eric: It was all there, Andrew, except we were missing our hosts.
Micah: What happened, man?
Andrew: Well, I - I'm back in New Jersey for a couple of weeks to visit family. This is also where I was recording MuggleCast for three - four years.
Micah: Your birthplace? The birthplace of MuggleCast.
Eric: Oh that's fun.
Andrew: Yes, exactly, exactly. This is the MuggleCast hospital ward.
Andrew: And so I'm still getting onto East Coast time. It's a little hard going from West to East [laughs] So I sleep in. And at 10:06 I hear my phone ringing. And I'm like, "Oh no! That's Eric or Micah and they're about to tell me that it's 10 o'clock." [laughs] I over slept. So I'm sorry guys for - for not being up. I was planning on being up two hours early. I was going to polish the show. But oh well, you guys did it for us.
Micah: Yeah. I mean it was surprising because normally you're always online. I mean even when you're 30,000 feet in the air you're online.
Andrew: So right.
Micah: To wake up this morning as we approach our 200th Episode and not to see you online, we got a bit worried.
Andrew: Ah, yeah, well...
Eric: Did you feel like after we interviewed you on the last episode of MuggleCast that that was it? That you could just kick back and...
Andrew: Yeah. Yeah, there was nowhere else I needed to go. I was good.
Andrew: But anyway, welcome everyone to our 200th Episode. We have reached a very nice milestone, and we're so happy to say that we have an exclusive interview with the producer of the Harry Potter franchise, David Heyman. Micah and Eric conducted this interview a couple weeks ago. We said to W.B., "W.B. we're entering our 200th Episode, we would love it - could you please, please, please get us David Heyman." And they were so nice about it. We got hooked up with Mr. Heyman. He was such a nice guy. It was a great interview. Micah and Eric did a great job, came up with some great questions. And David was very into it. I mean he is a Potter fan. So you're going to love this interview. And we have - we've got news and the usual stuff coming up on this week's episode. So let's get into it. For the 200th time, I'm Andrew Sims.
Eric: I'm Eric Scull.
Micah: And I'm Micah Tannenbaum.
[Show music continues and plays out]
Eric: That was nice, "the 200th time".
Eric: That was really nice.
Andrew: Should I start every segment with, "For the 200th time"?
Eric: Yes, yes. Absolutely.
Andrew: [laughs] Micah, for the 200th time, what's in the news this week?
Micah: Wow! I don't even know how to respond to that, Andrew. That's - 200 times? The MuggleCast...
Eric: Thanks, Andrew. [laughs]
Micah: Yeah, exactly.
Andrew: I think it would be fair to say, if this is the 200th Episode we've probably discussed about 1,000 news stories.
Micah: Oh, at least.
Andrew: Because we have what, about five news stories.
Micah: That's pretty amazing.
Eric: [laughs] A thousand stories.
Andrew: That is.
Eric: See, people said there wasn't that much news in Potter.
Micah: Yeah. Well speaking of news, how about MuggleNet 2.0? I mean...
Micah: It launched finally. We talked about it on last week's show, but I don't think it made the cut.
Andrew: Right, because we were having launch problems, so...
Micah: Technical difficulties.
Andrew: And I even said in that recording - Eric was like is it going to be by the time this episode's out, and I said, "Eric, if it's not out I'm going to be curled up in a corner crying uncontrollably." But yes, we had technical difficulties, but now it's out: MuggleNet.com. You'll see the brand new website. I love this, and I may be biased because I pretty much designed the whole thing, but I love this website. If you guys haven't checked it out, definitely go to MuggleNet. It's a whole new design. We've got new features. This site is packed with new features, but the greatest thing is that it actually loads faster than the old MuggleNet did. And that's a testament to the coding behind this. I'm a bit of a coding nerd, and oh, oh, the way this thing is coded. It's a dream.
Andrew: But - so yeah we've got lots of new features. Do you guys like the new design?
Micah: I'm a big fan of the Trivia. And...
Micah: ...I've spent a little bit time programming all of that. But...
Micah: So I guess I'm a little biased in that sense. Go and play Trivia right now, sign up and enjoy yourselves. But I just like the way the site has been laid out. It's just a really clean look. It's easy to navigate. And...
Eric: It catches your eye.
Micah: People were a little bit hesitant early on. But I think it's all because of change. We discussed this amongst ourselves. And it takes a...
Micah: ...little bit to get used to.
Micah: But I think the ability to share stories right away on Facebook and Twitter, that's really gone up. And people seem to be commenting a lot more. They're a lot more opinionated.
Micah: And I like refreshing the, "Did you know?'s" and looking at the Quotes and the Flashbacks and things like that.
Andrew: Yeah, yeah.
Micah: Because you forget exactly how much has gone on over the course of the last ten years.
Eric: Exactly. I think this was something that would - if this were MuggleNet when it first started out we may have looked for something different. As a 2.0 now that there is all this information, to have it categorized like this is great and there always was a lot to do on MuggleNet. But now with version 2.0 you can see visually on the page different things like the Flashback and the Trivia and the Quote. All of that is arranged in such a way that I think it wows you. And it's not overwhelming, but at the same time you get the - it's a visual representation of all the things that have gone on and will go on. Even the video player is just a great feature.
Andrew: And the idea was behind some of the features here like Flashback, Did You Know, and of course Quote, which we've had for a while, and even Trivia is that every time you load the page you're going to see something new. And most commented, big news, top commenters, those boxes are dynamic so they'll be changing as the users basically shape the website with commenting on stories. When there's a very popular stories it will go on to the list - it will go into the most commented box and that helps people see what is hot lately on MuggleNet and I love that feature.
Micah: Yeah, we need to get "Welcome to the all new MuggleNet.com" to shift off that a little bit. But...
Andrew: Well, here's a fun fact. It'll display the top most commented stories of the past thirty days.
Micah: Oh, okay.
Andrew: So it will - so that thing will change, eventually.
Micah: But those three tabs I think it allows the users to feel a lot more interactive with the site because what they're doing ultimately determines, maybe with the exception of big news...
Andrew: Right, right.
Micah: ...what is hot and what people are talking about.
Micah: The themes too, I was just going to bring that up. People have been asking. We're going to create more for those of you who were wondering. We just needed a set to get started with.
Micah: And yes, I did push the LEGO version.
[Andrew and Eric laugh]
Andrew: Micah was like, "Create a LEGO version. Create a LEGO version."
Eric: I have the LEGO version as my theme.
Andrew: Yeah, it's good. I like that one. Visit MuggleNet.com and check it out. Before moving along, we'd like to remind everyone again that this podcast is brought to you by Audible.com, the internet's leading provider of audiobooks with more than 75,000 downloadable titles across all types of literature featuring audio versions of many New York Times best-sellers. For listeners of MuggleCast, Audible is offering a free audio book to give you a chance to try out their great service. One audio book we'd recommend is The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien. You all know it's a classic story, and now you can get it for free. Just visit AudiblePodcast.com/MuggleCast. That's AudiblePodcast.com/MuggleCast. What else is going on, Micah?
Micah: Well, the other big news the last couple of weeks has been the Wizarding World Theme Park. We're just about 12 days away from it opening where we're recording right now. But it did soft open to the public, and we got a pretty in-depth look from InsidetheMagic.net. They had videos and photos from their trip within the park, and if you don't want to spoil yourself I would advise not looking at these videos. I know a lot of people in the comments said, "I'm not going to watch it. I'm going to wait until I get down there myself and experience it." But we got to look at The Forbidden Journey queue, the Hogsmeade entrance to Hogwarts Castle, Ollivander's, Flight of the Hippogriff. There's really no place they didn't go and shoot video.
Micah: So, I took a look at some of it. We also had a review of The Forbidden Journey ride. I didn't look at that at all so I don't have any news to report on that. I'm sorry.
Andrew: Well, you know what? That - that one that we posted is spoiler free. And he actually...
Micah: Oh, is it?
Andrew: Yeah. So, you can check that out. That - I did read that.
Eric: Well still I wouldn't draw attention to it. I don't really like this review. I mean it's - it's kind of - I don't know. It's a crap review.
Andrew: Well, it wasn't...
Eric: It's kind of like, "Hey. You know," It's spoiler free but at the same time it's not really - they say, "Oh, I must emphasize again that this is nothing like you've seen before," but yet they say it's like lacking story.
Andrew: Story. It's a big mash up. Yeah. I mean, I - That's sort of what I expected. If you're going to make a Harry Potter ride, one that...
Eric: You need to sum things up.
Andrew: Yeah. You got to mash it all together.
Eric: That's like...
Andrew: Fans really...
Andrew: ...won't mind that, I don't think.
Eric: I don't think so either. Like the Back to the Future ride for instance was - I mean, I guess...
Eric: ...they created an all new story if you remember it. I guess it either burned down or it was closed. It's now The Simpsons at Universal but at any rate that was like a new story in the Back to the Future universe. It was short, there was some kind of time travel, Biff had stolen the Delorean for the umpteenth time, and...
Micah: I think I went on that ride about ten years ago. [laughs]
Eric: It was a great ride. It was great. It had its own score, which I'm sure this does. So, I compare that a lot to it and I think that's what Universal rides are all about. So, I think the lack of specificity on the part of this review was kind of what upset me. If you're going to go the park and review the ride that's most talked about I think - I don't know. Maybe I should search their site for a better review of it.
Micah: Well, Andrew...
Andrew: Well, he also just did post a spoiler review. So - [laughs]
Andrew: If you want to be spoiled you can look at that, but.
Eric: Now that I can, I don't know that I want to be.
[Andrew and Eric laugh]
Andrew: Go ahead, Micah.
Micah: Well, I was going to say that you and I will be down there for the opening of the park in...
Micah: ...about a week and a half or so. So if you want real reviews I'm sure Andrew...
Andrew: [laughs] Yeah.
Micah: ...and I will be doing something.
Andrew: Well, I've got to say...
Micah: Possibly a podcast.
Andrew: ...this guy, this InsidetheMagic guy, his name is Ricky. He's really cool, and obviously he's done a great job with coverage. I mean, he's gotten some amazing HD videos of the park.
Eric: Yeah, the videos are good.
Eric: The videos are really good.
Andrew: But yeah. Micah and I will be down there. Universal was very nice to give us three tickets to the grand opening, and we'll be going and it's going to be a lot of fun. We'll post a review, absolutely. There will be a lot of coverage. I got my video camera and my photo camera, and I'm going to be - I'm not going to overdo it, because at this point people have seen tons of photos. But I think the main focus of the reporting will be on the grand opening itself because a lot of stars will be there.
Micah: Absolutely. I'm going to go check out the Hog's Head and see if Aberforth is in. [laughs]
Andrew: Another thing I found out through the soft opening is that they are serving authentic, U.K. beer.
Eric: Yes, they are.
Andrew: And that includes Stella - well, I don't know if Stella's...
Andrew: ...an English beer. Yeah, Stella Artois. Strongbow, that is a very popular cider in England. I love Strongbow. I just started - I had some a couple months ago in England. Yeah, so a lot of authentic beer, and then right next to it is the Hog's Head [laughs] beer...
Eric: Yeah, yeah, yeah.
Andrew: ...spout, whatever you call it.
Eric: They have their own brew. Yeah.
Andrew: Yeah, yeah, so very cool, very cool. I've got to say I'm pretty satisfied with all this - how the park's looking.
Eric: Yeah, and now there's a store at the airport with some of the merchandise. How did that - that surprised me. What did you guys think of that?
Andrew: Well, because Universal has a store in the airport, so I guess it makes sense to sell it there.
Micah: Yeah, but it's kind of a little bit premature in my opinion because the park hasn't really officially opened yet. So to have that store there - I mean it kind of takes away a little bit...
Eric: Yeah, it does. Because it has exclusive merchandise. I mean that's...
Andrew: But this is a good way to promote the - the Wizarding World, because if people go into that store in the airport, they see all this cool merchandise, so they're like, "Wow, all this is there? I've never been able to see this anywhere else."
Micah: I'll see how cool it really is. You and I will check it out.
Eric: You should broadcast from the airport store.
Andrew: No, the pictures look good. They are selling a lot of merchandise at this theme park that you cannot get anywhere else.
Andrew: It's expensive though, but...
Eric: Is it?
Micah: That's not surprising.
Micah: But the other big news of the last few weeks was Deathly Hallows, the epilogue, I think, is complete in terms of filming. We have a lot of video, a lot of photos from this epilogue scene, and wanted to get your guys' thoughts on what we saw, looking at Draco and Ron and Harry. Not too much of Hermione - very few photos, actually. We did get to see Ginny, as well as all of the kids. Looking at this, I thought they looked, at least from Draco's standpoint - [laughs] a little bit too old. I mean, they're only in their thirties.
Andrew: Yeah. Yeah, this is a bit worrying, and a lot of people were saying this in the comments as well. Personally, yeah, I agree. Draco looks a little too old. Harry looks a little too old. But I think that in a way, it is a bit unfair to judge already because when it gets on film, the lighting's going to be different. They're going to be shooting these guys from different angles. They may even do some digital touch-up.
Eric: That's very true.
Andrew: They might realize, "Oh my God, they looked way too old."
Eric: That's actually extremely true because I guess it's good to add more wrinkles and more detail that you can take out as opposed to trying to...
Andrew: That's true - yeah, yeah, yeah.
Eric: ...do it so the computer - so maybe they will look younger. One of the photos of Dan, he looks younger. He has a huge forehead. [laughs]
Andrew: Yeah. [laughs]
Eric: But he looks really young. And then in the other one that we saw with him and Ginny he looks quite a bit older. But I think it's too soon to judge. I think the important thing is these aren't the official videos. I'm sure if W.B. had their way these photos wouldn't exist, and frankly I don't know that - I mean I just think that it is too soon and I think we should wait for official kind of material to...
Micah: Yeah - no, that's right.
Andrew: Well, I will say the women and children all look good. They don't look too old - the kids look right, Bonnie looks good, and Emma, who plays Hermione of course, she didn't look too old either. I - I think they did the least to her, actually. We saw one or two pictures.
Eric: That's because she's got a contract with Burberry. She can't age too much or appear to have aged in anything, so.
Andrew: [laughs] Oh man, that could be true.
Andrew: So - yeah, like I said, we can't judge too much just yet, but it was cool to see all these pictures coming out of the filming of the epilogue.
Micah: Yeah, I mean, we're getting close. We've only got probably two weeks left of filming for them...
Micah: ...and then it's all a wrap. We've been hearing from different actors that are done filming. I know the Phelps twins are done. Chris Rankin is done.
Andrew: Warwick Davis.
Micah: Warwick Davis is done now. So it's slowly coming to an end. I remember when we posted a couple months ago that Alan Rickman had finished filming - everybody was starting to realize that this is all slowly but surely coming to an end.
Andrew: Yeah, I would say they're about - this may be the week coming up or the week you're listening to this episode, may be the final week because they had about two weeks left, and that was a week ago at least - it may have been more. I mean, they could be done now. [laughs]
Eric: Well, we saw also the touch-up shots. You guys remember this - that were posted? The reshoots, the Deathly Hallows reshoots...
Andrew: Yeah, they were doing reshoots, right.
Eric: ...where they were in the fields and stuff? And this is pretty cool. Because it's - again...
Micah: Is that like postproduction work, in a way?
Andrew: Sort of.
Eric: Kind of. It's like - either, if they didn't get the scene they wanted the first time, or if they realized upon seeing an edited - a cut - a rough cut copy - that they could use filler, or if they have pushed scenes off. Like little low clips, like intro then they'll go back and shoot it.
Andrew: Yeah, they could just be not - they could just not be happy with what they shot about a year ago. They were filming those same scenes about a year ago.
Andrew: Because photos leaked from it that time, too.
Micah: Right, right. Well, and that was with Slytherin's locket. I know David Heyman talked a little about that in the interview. So...
Eric: Yeah, but we did miss the Epilogue. We didn't get to talk to him about the Epilogue. He did mention about it, but as far as the mass hordes of pictures and videos happened a few days after we interviewed him, so that will not be on the interview. I just feel like I should prepare people who were looking just for that.
Micah: Yeah, but I think also though any time you film in a public place like that, you're opening yourself up to photos and videos, and that's just the nature of what happened here.
Eric: I mean truly they built a King's Cross set, right? For the - for the scene where Harry's in the afterlife - or not? Do you think they filmed that at King's Cross too?
Micah: Well, they could probably do that at Leavesden with a bit of green screen work I think because it doesn't necessarily have to all be replicated...
Eric: Or just a pillar.
Micah: ...of King's Cross.
Micah: Because it's...
Micah: ...kind of a...
Micah: A foggy - yeah, exactly.
Micah: Exactly. So another bit of news, we got to look at some of the props...
Micah: ...that are going to be used in Deathly Hallows, specifically The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore. We got a look at that book and A History of Magic by Bathilda Bagshot. So those are two books that play a big role in the final film.
Andrew: I love...
Andrew: ...the cover of Life and Lies.
Micah: I thought they did a good job...
Micah: ...with that.
Eric: I like...
Eric: ...A History of Magic better.
Micah: Very Rita Skeeter-ish.
Eric: I think - yeah, it is very Rita Skeeter-ish. It's kind of like a tabloid-esque cover.
Andrew: Yeah, but the theme with all of these is that they are definitely very authentic. I mean, such cool props.
Eric: Oh, yeah.
Andrew: And a lot of...
Micah: Well, in such detail. I mean, if you look and you read through some of the pages that they took pictures of, there is actual content...
Andrew: Yeah, yeah.
Micah: ...on there.
Andrew: Relevant content. Like The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore, there is a - the book is open and you can read the story. And I assume that story is the one that...
Eric: I was asking if that was - yeah, in the book.
Andrew: Yeah, a sample of it. I mean - but this can't be the whole story, of course. I mean, it must be the same pages duplicated.
Eric: Well, I feel like it only has the pages that they are going to show on film.
Andrew: Right, right.
Eric: The rest would be [talks gibberish]
Andrew: I just noticed on...
Andrew: ...the back side of the cover - when you see the open page picture of Life and Lies, you can see [laughs] Rita's face on the - along the side.
Eric: Oh, really?
Andrew: [laughs] It's pretty funny, yeah.
Eric: Didn't she say she wasn't coming back? Hang on.
Andrew: Yeah, and I think we talked about this on...
Andrew: ...a couple of episodes ago. She did end up coming back.
Eric: But it is such a huge part. Such a huge part.
Andrew: But I think it was just to do some quick reshoots.
Eric: Oh, yeah. You're right. There is...
Micah: Right, right.
Eric: ...her face on the - it's kind of like, I guess, a book cover or the inlay of the book. That is very cool.
Eric: That is a very cool touch.
Micah: Speaking of casting, Peter Malone is going to be playing - or Mullan, sorry - as Yaxley, the Death Eater. And it is good to know since he is in the opening scene of Deathly Hallows that...
[Andrew and Eric laugh]
Micah: ...he will be in the movie.
Eric: Micah, why are we getting...
Eric: ...this news so late? What is...
Micah: I don't know, I don't know. The other piece was that Ninette Finch has been cast as Augusta Longbottom. And so these small little pieces of casting news - I guess they needed to get out there before the movie starts being highly publicized because these were two characters - well, Yaxley more so. I remember we talked a little bit about that on the show. We had never heard any information as to who was cast for him. And the others were the Dumbledores.
Micah: That family, you know, did they cast them? Because there is obviously a lot of backstory there. And it is good to know - like I said, Yaxley, he plays a big role in the opening scene with Snape and then obviously in the Ministry.
Andrew: Well, that's the thing about this whole casting thing. Like you - W.B. didn't announce it. Nobody announced it. It was just put on their websites, right? The actor's...
Andrew: And I think that's why it comes out so late, just because...
Eric: When the actors themselves get around to it?
Andrew: Yeah. I don't even think they were allowed to...
Andrew: ...because - they were allowed to post that, because W.B. is always so secretive. And by the way, the pictures of those props? W.B. can't be happy with that either. I mean, they keep everything...
Andrew: ...under tight wraps.
Andrew: So... [laughs]
Micah: But - well, with these two, I think the thing is that they also weren't included on that press release that W.B. sent out.
Andrew: Yeah. Those were minor...
Micah: That's where we learned about...
Andrew: Those were minor characters...
Andrew: ...though, right?
Andrew: Yeah, yeah, that is where we...
Micah: Oh, yeah.
Andrew: ...learned about Miranda Richardson. And one other thing actually, while we're mentioning what W.B. does and doesn't care about anymore...
Eric: Careful, Andrew.
Andrew: If these - [laughs] if these photos that - no, this is a compliment. The epilogue photos. They didn't complain a bit. But with Half-Blood Prince filming, I remember some pictures of filming from that came out and they asked us to take it down. You know, fine, whatever. But the epilogue is something I would think you would want to keep pretty under - you would...
Andrew: ...want it to stay under tight wraps because you want to do a big reveal of how they actually look. So, I'm kind of surprised they actually didn't complain about the epilogue pictures.
Eric: My theory on that is that the epilogue is such a huge and unique deal to everybody. I remember when Deathly Hallows came out...
Andrew: It is everybody's scene?
Eric: No, it's important because it is the end of the series and I think it is symbolic that - I mean, I think they knew that people were going to seek it out. And I think, due to the very nature of the epilogue, that many people wish it had never been included in the Deathly Hallows book. I am not one of them, but I think that is safe to say that a lot of people didn't like it, the way that it ended or whatever. But it is - so, it is a conclusion. It is separate from the movie. It's not like - if you reveal some photos of the epilogue, it's not like you're going to get a secret glimpse into what the rest of the movie is like in...
Andrew: I know. But I'm...
Eric: In a way...
Andrew: ...just saying...
Eric: Because it is...
Andrew: ...it is ruining the surprise of the epilogue.
Eric: Yeah, that it is. I mean, I would have been - I was interested in seeing the makeup and all of that for the first time on screen.
Eric: Like, perhaps without...
Micah: But I think it goes back to what I was saying before though is anytime you do it in a public place, you risk the exposure. And there is no way to really control that. I mean, it is one thing if one photo leaks out online, and the fan sites pick it up and post it. It is completely different if you are filming in front of hundreds if not thousands of people who walk through that station every day. There is nothing that you can do about that.
Andrew: So, they went into it knowing, oh, photos are going...
Andrew: ...to come out. Okay, Micah, what else is going on?
Click here to go to page two