David Heyman talks “Paddington” and the “Potter” film experience

In an interview with the Telegraph, David Heyman, producer of the Harry Potter films, discusses his new movie, Paddington, as well as his experience making the Potter films. Paddington, which premiered today in the UK, is based on the beloved children’s books by Michael Bond.

For Heyman, books have always been a source of inspiration for his films. He has produced films such as I am Legend, Yes Man, The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, and of course, Harry Potter, all of which are based on novels.

On creating these films based on books, Heyman says,

These are all books that travel, that people connect with. But I was lucky, too. Harry Potter changed my life.

Though Heyman famously fought for Potter film rights after reading Philosopher’s Stone, even he couldn’t have predicted the enormous success the franchise had:

I thought it would be a nice, smallish British film.

Karen Jankel, daughter of Paddington author Michael Bond wasn’t about to trust the story of the fictional bear that she grew up with to just anyone. But for her, choosing to work with Heyman was, a “no-brainer.”

Paul King, Paddington director, also discusses his confidence in Heyman’s abilities, saying,

Paddington was in my soul quite a pure and perfect thing, and I was obviously as keen as other British people of my age that it wasn’t going to be a horrific Hollywood reboot. And having seen how lovingly David treated Harry Potter, I knew he wouldn’t want to turn him into a rapping, baseball-capwearing, leather-jacketed, crime-fighting bear.

King also describes his experience in collaborating with Heyman on the film, saying,

What’s wonderful about David, who I suspect is as rich as Iron Man, is that on day one he said, ‘We’ll develop it until we think we have a film worth making, and then we’ll make it as best we can.’ That’s why it’s been, I think, 105 years in development.

In the same interview, Heyman also spoke about J.K. Rowling’s finished script for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, which you can read more about here.

Were you one of the lucky few who got to attend the UK premiere of Paddington today? If not, will you be seeing it when it hits theaters? Tell us your thoughts!