A Harry Potter TV series is in early development at HBO Max, according to sources for the Hollywood Reporter and Variety.
Executives from the US streaming service HBO Max have reportedly met with writers to discuss the direction of the project. Nothing has yet been pitched, and the live-action show has no writers or talent officially attached, according to THR as well as Variety.
However, Warner Bros. and HBO Max, both owned by WarnerMedia, have released a statement that: “There are no Harry Potter series in development at the studio or on the streaming platform.”
Reaction to the rumours was mixed.
Jack McBryan tweeted: “Wait, are there not like 5 Harry Potter shows being developed for HBO Max already? What took them so long to realize this was a good idea?”
Others appeared to be fans of the idea, with some tweeting in support of a Marauders series – alluding to a popular fan idea that new content should focus on James Potter, Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, and Peter Pettigrew (the Marauders) during their time at Hogwarts.
Some flagged JK Rowling’s views—widely denounced as transphobic—as an issue.
“Sorry to hear that HBO max (sic) has got to try for such a potential cash cow instead of distancing themselves from the hateful author,” tweeted ThePadawan.
It’s not clear what direction the series would take if it became a reality, but with worldwide takings of more than $9 billion for the eight Warner Bros.–produced Harry Potter movies and two Fantastic Beasts ones, there is certainly an incentive.
Additionally, in 2019, Warner Bros. trademarked Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the 2016 play conceived by JK Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne, which acts as a sequel to the original books.
At the time this drew speculation about a movie trilogy adaptation starring the original actors.
If this is the route the TV writers take, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, and Emma Watson would be the right age in a few years’ time – 36 or 37.
However, We Got This Covered reported in 2020 that Daniel Radcliffe would reprise his role only if JK Rowling was not involved, due to her comments about the trans community.
Or, like Amazon’s Lord of the Rings project, HBO Max could opt for a prequel, perhaps with the fan-favourite Marauders.
Creator JK Rowling has not publicly commented on the latest TV series speculation; her last post on her public platforms was to promote the relaxation of copyright permissions required for teachers working remotely to use her work.
Words by Naomi Curston
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