MuggleNet’s 2023 Year in Review: “Hogwarts Legacy,” Exhibitions Everywhere, and a Reboot in the Works
Another year gone! And with the end of the year comes MuggleNet’s Year in Review, where we recap all the biggest Wizarding World stories of 2023.
February saw the franchise’s most anticipated event of the year, with the release of the action role-playing console game Hogwarts Legacy, which got an overall positive response from fans and went on to sell spectacularly. Then in April, we got news of the next wizarding console game in development, Harry Potter: Quidditch Champions. And in June was the worldwide launch of the new mobile game Harry Potter: Magic Awakened, following its soft launch in various countries in the preceding months.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child ended its runs in both Melbourne and Toronto in July. However, the play also announced new opportunities for audiences to see the story in person, with a North American tour and high school productions both coming in 2024.
In June, the Warner Bros. Studio Tour Tokyo – The Making of Harry Potter opened, giving Japanese fans the same opportunity to enjoy the Studio Tour experience that Brits have had for over a decade.
Multiple Wizarding World exhibitions and experiences have been continuing or beginning their tours of the globe. Harry Potter: The Exhibition is touring multiple versions concurrently, this year wrapping up stays in Atlanta and Vienna, and opening in Paris from April to October, New York City in May, Barcelona in November, and Macao in December (with the last three still open). It also announced a 2024 opening in Munich. Fantastic Beasts: The Wonder of Nature finished its stay in Toronto at the beginning of the year before opening in Melbourne from May to October.
Also at the beginning of the year, Harry Potter: A Forbidden Forest Experience wrapped up its second season in Cheshire, England; its first and last season in Groenenburg, Belgium (after locals voiced concerns about its environmental impact); and seasons in Leesburg, Virginia, and Westchester County, New York. This fall, the experience debuted in Little Elm, Texas, and announced plans to open in Singapore and Melbourne in 2024. Harry Potter: Magic at Play, after finishing up an extended run in Chicago in September, opened in Seattle in November. And the newest wizarding exhibition, the interactive art experience Harry Potter: Visions of Magic, opened in Cologne in December.
In the literary realm, the MinaLima illustrated edition of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and a new companion book titled The Harry Potter Wizarding Almanac were both released in October, while Scholastic celebrated the 25th anniversary of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone with “refreshed” classic Harry Potter covers, as well as other events and activities.
There was also sad news, with actor Michael Gambon, who played Albus Dumbledore in six of the Harry Potter films, passing away in September.
In November, a documentary produced by Daniel Radcliffe called David Holmes: The Boy Who Lived shed new light on the on-set accident that paralyzed Dan’s stunt double in 2009.
Perhaps the biggest announcement of all came in April, when Warner Bros. revealed plans for a reboot of the Harry Potter story in the form of a TV series. This news was met with mixed reactions from fans, and only time will tell where the TV show will lead the franchise and fandom.
See MuggleNet’s full 2023 year in review here, and review past years as well!