Quidditch with cheerleaders? Only if the “Potter” films were made in the US
The most successful film franchise in history had a very rocky beginning as the boy wizard was nearly turned into an American teenage drama series instead.
According to new articles in the Mail Online and the Independent, David Heyman snapped up the rights to the first four Harry Potter books in 1999 and negotiated with Warner Brothers to produce the films. Heyman stated, “In some of the first talks with writers in America there was talk of moving it to the States, you know, cheerleaders and the like. That just never really rang true because it really was culturally so British. Yet, thematically, it was universal.”
In the end, Heyman won the arguments to keep the entire franchise strictly British, stating, “One of the things I love about Harry Potter is its truth and honesty. The themes, of being an outsider at school, are relatable the world over. But the sense of humour is very British, and we had to be true to the feel and language of JK Rowling’s books. It wouldn’t have made sense for the homes, the institutions and those gothic structures to be set in America.”
There was also talk of famed director Steven Spielberg wanting to make the Harry Potter films animated in the very beginning. Thank goodness David Heyman and J.K. Rowling stood their ground against the movie bosses and did not end up Americanizing or animating the Harry Potter movies.