All Was Well: Four Years After Deathly Hallows – Part 2
Four years ago, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2 came out in theaters. The release of the last movie was dramatic and shocking. Our lives would no longer be spent waiting for the release of the next book or movie. Would everything stay the same, or would it change completely?
In 2011, I managed to save up enough money to attend my first Harry Potter convention, LeakyCon. When they announced that we would get to view Deathly Hallows a day early, I could hardly contain my excitement. The convention rented out the whole movie theater in Universal CityWalk just for us. Like many others, I believed that the fandom would start to fizzle out after the movie was released. This would be the end of an era. No more books and no more movies. Thankfully, I was wrong. Four years later, the fandom is still going strong.
The walk to the movie theater was the most dramatic walk of my life. There is a path that leads from the convention hotel to the theater in Universal CityWalk. The path wound around a lake, surrounded by trees filled with chirping birds. I chose to take this journey alone because Harry took his walk to the end alone. The walk did not take very long, and I arrived right on time. Before entering the theater, I took a moment to admire the perfect view of Hogwarts.
Seeing Deathly Hallows – Part 2 at a convention was more intense than seeing it at a midnight release. After everyone had piled into their assigned rooms, we all got comfortable. People passed snacks, Red Vines, drinks, tissues, pillows, blankets, and a few stuffed animals around. We were at a giant fandom slumber party instead of in a movie theater. The movie ended up being as traumatizing as I thought it would. The crying began as soon as the lights in the room went out and didn’t end until we all left the theater. My eyes teared up when the logo appeared on the screen, and this evolved into me sobbing by the time the Final Battle started.
After the movie ended, I walked out of the room and immediately saw a cardboard cutout of Snape. I ran to it and gave it a hug while still crying a little bit. Of course this was the moment that my friends decided to turn up. They made sure that I would have photographic evidence of my moment of weakness.
After laughing for a bit and taking a picture, they peeled me away, and we walked to the lake. Hogwarts stood in the distance, all lit up. In the movie it was almost destroyed, but here it was looking perfect and magical. We laughed and made jokes the whole night. Instead of feeling sad, I felt giddy. This wasn’t the end. It was just the beginning of something new. When it was time to head back to the hotel for the Wrock concert, I insisted that we take the boats across the lake. I wanted to leave Hogwarts the same way that we all came to it years ago – by boat. With one last look at the castle, I started my next great adventure.
Four years later, the fandom is still going strong. New works of fan fiction turn up every day. Thanks to websites like Tumblr, sharing fan art can be easier than ever. Harry Potter is not over. We are getting a new movie next year. New amusement parks are being created across the globe. Pottermore constantly releases new information. We are still here and more active than ever. The release of the last movie may have been the end of an era, but it was also the beginning of a new one.
Where were you when you saw the last movie? How has your life changed since 2011? Tell us your story in the comments.
We’re wizards. We’ll party forever. This night will never end.” – The Whomping Willows