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Potter Producers Heyman and Barron on "Deathly Hallows: Part 2" Changes, Additions, and Spoilers

DH Film
Posted by: Edward
April 05, 2011, 12:54 AM

CinemaBlend has a report online from last week's CinemaCon event, which included a discussion with Harry Potter film producers David Heyman and David Barron.  In addition to the much talked about four minute collection of footage from the film, the producers spoke at length about the second half of  the "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" film.  In the Q&A, which can be heard and read in its entirety here, Mr. Heyman and Mr. Barron discuss alterations made to the final battle elements of the film, as well as speak to the reshoots done for the Epilogue scene last winter.  Below is a small portion of the lengthy Q&A.  As always, beware of movie specific spoilers!

In the footage we saw today, there's a scene of Snape and McGonagall facing off in the Great Hall, which I don't remember happening at all in the book. 
They do face off, but it's not in the Great Hall. There are a lot of things there that are slightly different from the book, but they are true to the spirit to the book. Snape and McGonagall do face off in the book, but it's in a corridor as Harry's on his way to the Ravenclaw common room. It didn't work the way we were structuring the final battle to have that, so it takes place in the Great Hall. We also wanted to make a bigger scene of Harry's confrontation with Snape. Snape's role in the film is minimal, and it was minimal in the second half of the book, and yet you wanted to have the emotional investment when you see his past story [the memory Harry views in the Pensieve]. We wanted to build that up in order for it to have its emotional impact.  
So the Pensieve moment stays in too? 
Yes, that and Dumbledore [at King's Cross]. But what I love about these films, what I love about the books, is that all the action, adventure and magic, what means most to me is the character stuff, the slow stuff. I love having the time to tell the story. I'm really happy about breaking the book into two films, it gives us the time to really spend time with the characters and have the moments such as the flashback, Dumbledore at King's Cross. If we had done it as one film, we would have lost the Snape flashback.
Do you keep the desks that Professor McGonagall is instructing to charge? 
No, we didn't.  
Oh, I loved the desks! 
I liked the desks too, but if you think about it, in a film which has grown up, that's kind of juvenile. It's like Peter Pettigrew strangling himself [which happened in the seventh book but was cut from the film]. It's great in the book, but really hard on film. Those things don't translate as well when the films are growing up.     
When you went back and reshot the epilogue at the end of the film, was it mostly tweaking the makeup effects? 
It was a couple of reasons. One it was the makeup, that was the first thing. The other was, to be honest, we were limited by shooting at King's Cross. It really limited our ability to block. And in terms of performance, these little kids, some of who weren't actors, were drowned by the noise of the trains, the announcements. That was really a problem. When we filmed it back at the studio, we brought the trains to the studio and filled the station in digitally. It's really beautiful. 


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36 Comments

Noavatar-thumb
254 Points

cannot wait cannot wait.
so are they taking out pettigrew’s death altogether? because that makes no sense.

Posted by andarocketship on April 08, 2011, 01:48 AM report to moderator
Avatars_movies_ootp_002_thumb
2105 Points

It sounds like they’re keeping the heart of the book, even if they’re such grown-up Muggles tha they can’t appreciate that the charging desks are totally in keeping with the spirit of Hogwarts!

Posted by Agrippa1 on April 09, 2011, 01:39 PM report to moderator
Imagescad1mlxa_thumb
3006 Points

Why only 7 JK why ????????????

Posted by muggle..andproudofit =:) on April 10, 2011, 01:03 PM report to moderator
Hufflepuff_lj_100_thumb
1985 Points

:sigh: July can’t come fast enough!

Posted by jhangelgurl (ITC!) on April 10, 2011, 06:25 PM report to moderator
Groucho2_thumb

These lines have been nagging me in the back of my head: “I liked the desks too, but if you think about it, in a film which has grown up, that’s kind of juvenile. It’s like Peter Pettigrew strangling himself …”

I’ll grant Heyman and Barron are right, there are scenes in the book that just do not translate well into film. BUT, surely neither Heyman nor Barron are suggesting that the death of Pettigrew scene is “juvenile”? The scene itself in the book is one of the moments when JKR is making a very clear moral point: Pettigrew felt remorse, guilt, and therefore dies (literally) at Voldemort’s hand. The same is true of Grindelward’s remorse and death. Conversely Voldemeort is incapable of remorse and condemns himself. Far from being “juvenile”, these moral moments in the books are essential to JKR’s world vision.

On the other hand, look at the “solution” adopted in the filming of DH part 1: Dobby kills Pettigrew! Clearly that breaks with the entire moral vision JKR has created, especially for Dobby, and for house-elves, the ‘down-trodden’ in general.

So, while I can swallow many of the changes made in the transition from print to film, and while I actually do know a bit about film-making in general and why/how films can never be truly like the books, I have consistently been disappointed in the films for their inability to convey the moral moments and choices, the “messages”, that are at the heart of the novels.

Posted by budb on April 17, 2011, 09:54 AM report to moderator
Raven_avatar_thumb
80418 Points

They need to include Peeves…

Posted by Won_Two on April 26, 2011, 10:43 PM report to moderator
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