As the end begins for Harry Potter this week let’s look back at where it all started. In the trailer for Harry Potter and the Sorceror’s Stone everybody is so young, and in the case of Richard Harris, so alive.
There’s no talk of beloved books or events that define a generation; when Sorceror’s Stone hit nobody was even sure if we’d get all the books made into films. Hell, nobody was even sure that all the books would be that good, and nobody knew the incredible places they would end up going in the final chapters. The film came out just as the books began the process of maturing from straight kiddie fare into something bigger and grander and more wonderful and enduring. Despite having Chris Columbus behind the camera luck struck and the elements for one of the biggest and most successful franchises in film history were sown.
So now go back to 2001, before the Potter films were guaranteed money makers. Go back before Dan Radcliffe showed his penis on stage. Hell, go back to that weird time before the Twin Towers fell, because that’s when the trailer for the first film debuted - months before the birth of the War on Terror. It’s kind of amazing that the crummy CGI and overbroad child actors on display here spawned such an industry.