Ultimate Year in Review: 2010
For MuggleNet’s 20th anniversary, we are looking back at the past 20 years in Harry Potter history to bring attention back to its most significant moments. This is a series of articles that will run over four months. Our previous article covered the year 2009.
This week, the Time-Turner takes us all the way back to 2010, a year full of political events and technological developments: David Cameron became prime minister of the United Kingdom; Kate Middleton and Prince William got engaged; Elon Musk successfully launched and recovered his spacecraft SpaceX Dragon; Tim Burton’s adaptation of Alice in Wonderland, featuring Johnny Depp (Gellert Grindelwald), was released; and the boy band One Direction was formed during an X Factor show.
In news surrounding Rowling, the Harry Potter franchise, and MuggleNet, 2010 was a year of a lot of exciting announcements.
In January, we learned that author J.K. Rowling sampled the butterbeer at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. Universal’s VP of creative development, Thierry Coup, revealed that it had been “a very exciting moment” to do the tasting “until J.K. Rowling really felt, okay, this is it, this is what I always thought butterbeer should taste like.” Readers also gained the first insight into the queue for Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey. Since Universal worked with the Harry Potter films’ production designer, Stuart Craig, and art director, Alan Gilmore, the waiting line area is a very accurate representation of the interior of Hogwarts to the point that most of the props used in the rooms are the actual props from the films.
In June, MuggleNet’s podcast MuggleCast interviewed Harry Potter producer David Heyman for its 200th episode. Heyman revealed that the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows split had been decided and that they added a scene that would be incredibly dramatic and very moving. Listen to the episode here.
On June 17, Universal Orlando Resort hosted the grand opening of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter with appearances by J.K. Rowling, Warwick Davis, Tom Felton, Sir Michael Gambon, Rupert Grint, Matthew Lewis, James and Oliver Phelps, Daniel Radcliffe, and Bonnie Wright. The day started with the opening of Hogsmeade, with Hogwarts Castle rising in the background, and throughout the day, the cast and crew members gave interviews in the Three Broomsticks, talking about their experiences in creating the theme park. Daniel Radcliffe commented on the filming of the safety instructions for Harry Potter and the Forbidden Journey:
I’d like to point out the irony of Michael [Gambon] doing any safety instructions.
The day full of celebrations ended with the cast members lighting up Hogwarts Castle with the audience. The whole spectacle was rounded out with the music of John Williams.
In July, fans who attended San Diego Comic-Con got to see new Deathly Hallows footage, featuring Dumbledore in his grave, Snape meeting with Voldemort, the seven Potters, and much more. Tom Felton, who was in attendance, also took to the stage to talk about the work on the last two films and to interact with fans.
Everyone has put absolutely everything into it. Without question, we’re most excited about these films.
Just two months later, fans got to see the first trailer for Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1. The trailer featured scenes from both Deathly Hallows films, and the first part would come out two months later, on November 19, 2010. See the trailer below.
In October, Daniel Radcliffe spoke with Potter fansites about the upcoming Deathly Hallows films. He shared how easy it was for him to imitate the girls during the “Seven Potters” scene and how impersonating Rupert Grint and being angry with him for a good portion of the films was really challenging. He also addressed the possibility of there being a Potter musical, sharing his doubt that it would be possible to pull off. Radcliffe also explained what makes Deathly Hallows – Part 1 so different in his eyes:
You see these characters stripped of their comfortable, safe surroundings and suddenly just out in the wilderness together. The first one is being described as a road movie because they are being so exposed, and it’s such a different situation. You learn a lot more about how those characters function in that situation, and it’s a real exploration of the relationship between them and the flaws in all their personalities.
In January, rumors emerged that Warner Bros. was looking into buying Leavesden Studios, where all eight of the Harry Potter films had been filmed, to use it for future movies and to turn part of it into a Harry Potter museum, featuring the sets and memorabilia from the films. In November, those plans were finalized, and a tentative opening date was set for spring 2012. The first concept art of the museum was released with the confirmation that Warner Bros. was planning to spend £100m on this deal.