Anniversaries of first two Harry Potter film release dates

Nov 15, 2017

Posted by: Amanda Kirk

Films, Films - Film 1 Pages, Films - Film 2 Pages, HPPS/SS Film, Movies, Warner Bros.

Any excuse for a party, right?  Especially when the party has a Harry Potter theme.  With so many book and movie release date anniversaries to celebrate (and more releases on the horizon), you can have one practically every week.

The first film adaptation, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s/Sorcerer’s Stone was released in the UK and U.S. on November 16, 2001.

The second film, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, was released on November 15, 2002.

To celebrate, all eight Harry Potter films are now available in 4K HDR for the first time on Apple TV 4K (it’s our understanding that if you already own the movies, the new 4K HDR version will automatically be added to your library (Thanks to Jim, one of our readers, for the info!). Apple said on the release:

“Now, the magical world in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone will appear more lifelike than ever. 4K gives you a crisper picture using four times more pixels than standard HD. High Dynamic Range (HDR) delivers brighter, more realistic colors and greater detail.”

Both films were directed by Christopher Columbus, with music by John Williams.  Steve Kloves wrote the screenplays, adapted from J.K. Rowling’s beloved books.  Many fans of the books are incensed at what was left out and/or changed in all eight movies.  I’m certainly amongst that number, although I understand that some changes had to be made due to running time and budget constraints, and the inherent differences between telling a story in the medium of film versus the written page.  J.K. Rowling’s imagination was not limited by what can be done with CGI or actors.  But many fans would argue vociferously that some of the changes were ill-advised, and played havoc with the storyline and characters.  This is a subject of endless debate in the fandom.  I have always lived in hope that Warner Bros. would respond by reshooting some of their more egregious errors and omissions and editing them into the films.  But the deaths of some of the adult actors, and the ageing of the child actors, precludes that now.  We have to live with the films as is, both the good and the bad.  When I watch them, I try to ignore the changes from the books that don’t work and focus on the aesthetics.  This is what the films do best.  In terms of the sets, costumes, soundtrack, casting, and general atmosphere, the films evoke the world of the books beautifully.  This is most apparent in the first two films, in which we are introduced to the wizarding world and get to explore Diagon Alley and Hogwarts castle for the first time.

If you haven’t watched the first two films in awhile, or even if you have, take the opportunity of the anniversary of their releases to view them again.  We’re fast approaching the Christmas season so it’s an ideal time to enjoy the decorations in the Great Hall during the holiday scenes in both films.

Watch the trailers now to get a taste.  Which film is your favourite, and why?  Tell us in the comments.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s/Sorcerer’s Stone

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

The Leaky Cauldron is not associated with J.K. Rowling, Warner Bros., or any of the individuals or companies associated with producing and publishing Harry Potter books and films.