Saturday, May 17, 2008

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Film)

From Wikipedia, the free Encyclopedia

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is a 2008 Fantasy Adventure Film, based on the Novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. It will be the sixth film in the popular Harry Potter Films series. Production is in the principal photography stage. David Yates, the director of the fifth film, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, will return as director for this film. David Heyman and David Barron will produce the film, and Steve Kloves, though he did not write the fifth film, will return as screenwriter for this instalment. Filming began on September 24, 2007 and the film is scheduled for a UK and US release on November 21, 2008 and an Australian release on November 27, 2008. Like the previous film, the sixth film will be simultaneously released in regular theatres and IMAX 3-D.


Main articles: Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince and the extended plot at WikiBooks

On December 14, 2007, Warner Brothers released its official plot summary. It reads:

Voldemort is tightening his grip on both the Muggle and wizarding worlds and Hogwarts is no longer the safe haven it once was. Harry suspects that dangers may even lie within the castle, but Dumbledore is more intent upon preparing him for the final battle that he knows is fast approaching. Together they work to find the key to unlock Voldemort's defenses and, to this end, Dumbledore recruits his old friend and colleague, the well-connected and unsuspecting bon vivant Professor Horace Slughorn, whom he believes holds crucial information. Meanwhile, the students are under attack from a very different adversary as teenage hormones rage across the ramparts. Harry finds himself more and more drawn to Ginny, but so is Dean Thomas. And Lavender Brown has decided that Ron is the one for her, only she hadn't counted on Romilda Vane's chocolates! And then there's Hermione, simpering [sic] with jealously [sic] but determined not to show her feelings. As romance blossoms, one student remains aloof. He is determined to make his mark, albeit a dark one. Love is in the air, but tragedy lies ahead and Hogwarts may never be the same again.”

Before David Yates was officially chosen to direct the film, many others had been offered the job, and previous directors had expressed an interest in returning. Alfonso Cuarón, the director of the third film, stated he "would love to have the opportunity" to return. Goblet of Fire director Mike Newell declined a spot to direct the fifth film, and was not approached for this one either. Terry Gilliam was Rowling's personal choice to direct Philosopher's Stone. However, when asked whether he would consider directing a later film, Gilliam said, "Warner Bros. had their chance the first time around, and they blew it."

Matthew Vaughn and James McTeigue were reportedly approached, and M. Night Shyamalan also declined. Shyamalan stated that he would like to try his own hand at writing an adaptation of a book before attempting to take on Harry Potter, despite his having written the screenplay of 1999's Stuart Little. Access Hollywood reported that Michael Hoffman was in talks to direct, though the rumour was quickly denied. It was not until May 2007 that Yates was announced as the director, making him the second director to helm two films in the series.

Yates has retained composer Nicholas Hooper, costume designer Jany Temime, visual effects supervisor Tim Burke, creature and make-up effects designer Nick Dudman, and special effects supervisor John Richardson from the fifth film. Since February 2007, Stuart Craig, the production designer of the first five films as well, has been designing sets, including the cave, and the astronomy tower, where the climax of the film takes place. Academy Award nominated Bruno Delbonnel is the film's cinematographer.

Yates and Heyman have noted that some of the events of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows may influence the script of the film, and that there will not be as many memories in the film as in the book. Yates noted: "We're making a decision right now to compress those a wee bit, but we've still got some really cool ones." Quidditch will also be featured, much to the annoyance of Radcliffe and other cast and crew members. Steve Kloves, who wrote the first four films but opted to pen The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time rather than the fifth film, returned for the sixth adaptation. Rowling has read Kloves' script and crossed out a passage in which Dumbledore recalls a past female love, penning in the margin "Dumbledore is gay."


Filming began on 24 September 2007, with one week of rehearsals, and is about to end as of May 2008. Some sources stated that filming may move from the UK, where all of the previous five films have been shot. This is North Scotland reported filming will take place in New Zealand, due to the "more agreeable economy and climate" and lack of Scottish funding. The Sunday Business Post in Ireland has noted that the film's producers and WB executives have been scouting there, specifically Leinster and Munster because they "believe they have now exhausted possible locations in Britain." They are "particularly keen on Ireland, as the landscape is similar to Britain and will appear similar to the settings of the previous films." The crew also scouted around Cape Wrath in Scotland, for use in the cave scene. Filming is scheduled to return to Glen Coe and Glenfinnan, both locations that have appeared in the previous films, to preserve the continuity of the landscape.

On the weekend of 6 October 2007, the crew shot scenes involving the Hogwarts Express in the misty and dewy environment of Fort William, Scotland. A series of night scenes have been filmed in the village of Lacock and the cloisters at Lacock Abbey for three nights starting 25 October 2007. Filming took place from 5 p.m. to 5 a.m. daily, and residents of the street were asked to black out their windows with dark blinds. On set reports indicated that the main scene filmed was Harry and Dumbledore's visit to Slughorn's house. Further filming took place in Surbiton railway station in October 2007, Gloucester Cathedral, where the first and second films were shot, in February 2008, and at the Millennium Bridge in London in March 2008.

Though Radcliffe, Gambon and Broadbent started shooting in late September 2007, some other stars started much later: Watson did not begin until December 2007, Rickman until January 2008, and Bonham Carter until February 2008.


Further information: List of Harry Potter cast members

* Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter, who is now entering his sixth year at Hogwarts, with the wizarding world at war. Radcliffe has insisted that he will not be on autopilot while filming.

* Rupert Grint as Ron Weasley, one of Harry's two best friends. He develops an on-off relationship with Lavender Brown, although his true affections lie with Hermione.

* Emma Watson as Hermione Granger, one of Harry's two best friends. Watson considered not returning for the sixth film, but eventually decided that "the pluses outweighed the minuses" and could not bear to see anyone else play Hermione.

* Michael Gambon as Albus Dumbledore. The legendary wizard and headmaster of Hogwarts. The revelation of Dumbledore's sexuality prompted Gambon to "camp up" around the set when off camera, but his on-screen performance is expected to remain unchanged from the previous films.

* Jim Broadbent as Horace Slughorn, the newly appointed Hogwarts Potions master. Broadbent described his costumes as "tweedy", and his character as "comic", while Radcliffe noted that "[Slughorn's] tragedy will outweigh the comedy".

* Alan Rickman as Severus Snape, the former Potions master, who finally achieves his goal of becoming Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher.

* Tom Felton as Draco Malfoy, a classmate of Harry, who Harry suspects of carrying out a task for Voldemort across the year, and son of Narcissa Malfoy and nephew to Bellatrix.

* Bonnie Wright as Ginny Weasley, Ron's younger sister in her fifth year, for whom Harry develops intense romantic feelings. She dates Dean Thomas for most of the year.

* Matthew Lewis as Neville Longbottom, a friend of Harry, Ron, Hermione and Ginny.

* Evanna Lynch as Luna Lovegood, a friend of Harry, Ron, Hermione and Ginny.

* Robbie Coltrane as Rubeus Hagrid, the Hogwarts gamekeeper and Care of Magical Creatures teacher.

* Maggie Smith as Minerva McGonagall, the Hogwarts Transfiguration teacher, deputy headmistress and head of Gryffindor.

* David Thewlis as Remus Lupin, a member of the Order of the Phoenix and former Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher.

* Natalia Tena as Nymphadora Tonks, a member of the Order of the Phoenix.

* Helen McCrory as Narcissa Malfoy, Draco's mother and younger sister of Bellatrix. McCrory was originally cast as Bellatrix Lestrange in Order of the Phoenix, but had to drop out due to pregnancy. Naomi Watts was previously reported as having accepted the role, only for it to be denied by her agency.

* Helena Bonham Carter as Bellatrix Lestrange, one of Voldemort's principal Death Eaters, older sister of Narcissa Malfoy, and aunt to Draco.

* Timothy Spall as Peter Pettigrew, one of Voldemort's principal Death Eaters.

* Mark Williams and Julie Walters as Arthur and Molly Weasley, Ron and Ginny's parents.

* Hero Fiennes Tiffin and Frank Dillane will each play Tom Riddle, the child who becomes Lord Voldemort, at age eleven and as a teenager respectively. Tiffin is the 9-year-old nephew of Ralph Fiennes, who plays the adult Voldemort in the fourth and fifth films. Yates commented at the U.S. Order of the Phoenix premiere, that one of the two actors was "really interesting." An open casting call was held for the part in July 2007, with applicants reading from a scene involving Riddle trying to persuade Horace Slughorn to explain what Horcruxes are Christian Coulson, who played Riddle in Chamber of Secrets, expressed an interest in returning. However, Yates responded that Coulson was too old, nearing 30, to be playing the role. Jamie Campbell Bower, who appeared in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, previously noted that he had his "fingers crossed" he would be cast as a young Riddle.

* Jessie Cave as Lavender Brown, Ron's on-off girlfriend. Watson described her as "perfect for the role," although Cave did not attend the open auditions. An open casting call was held for the part on 1 July 2007. Over 7,000 girls turned out for the audition and read from a scene with Madam Pomfrey, Hermione, and Ron. Yates tested Grint with the top five choices for Lavender, reading certain lines and kissing, to see which pairing had the best chemistry

Additionally, Warwick Davis and David Bradley will reprise their roles as Charms teacher Filius Flitwick and caretaker Argus Filch. Georgina Leonidas will play Katie Bell, the Gryffindor Chaser who is injured by a cursed necklace. Anna Shaffer will be portraying Romilda Vane, a student obsessed with Harry, she tries to make him fall in love with her by using love potions. Websites of UK casting agencies reported that Scarlett Byrne will play Pansy Parkinson. Katie Leung will also return as Cho Chang in a very brief role. Two 11-year-old children, Taylor Triphook and Katie Head, who have been noted to be redheads, will play twins in the film, roles not culled from the novel. 12-year-old Ashley Whitehead has been cast as an orphan in the film, while Louis Cordice will play Blaise Zabini. Freddie Stroma, Isabella Laughland, and Robert Knox will play Cormac McLaggen, Katie Bell's friend Leanne and Marcus Belby respectively. Ralph Ineson will play Amycus Carrow, Suzanne Toase will play Alecto Carrow, and Dave Legeno will play Fenrir Greyback. Tom Moorcroft will portray Regulus Black, and Sanguini, the vampire at Slughorn's party will be played by Charlie Bennison. Tony Coburn will play Young Lucius Malfoy.

Afshan Azad and Shefali Chowdhury have expressed interest in returning as the Patil twins. Both Clémence Poésy and Chris Rankin are interested in returning, but in October 2007 Poésy noted that she will not be reprising her role of Fleur Delacour, and Rankin has stated that he thinks Percy Weasley will be cut. Miriam Margolyes, who has not appeared in her role as Pomona Sprout since Chamber of Secrets, wishes to return as well. After he expressed an interest in appearing, Yates confirmed that Bill Nighy would be his first choice for the role of Minister for Magic Rufus Scrimgeour, providing the character made it into the final screenplay. Although no further reports have been released, Yates told Wizard that he was "struggling with [fitting Scrimgeour in the script] at the moment, and he's in one moment and he's out the next." Madonna's daughter Lourdes was reportedly offered a role in the film, although it was rejected as Madonna wants her daughter to "have a normal childhood."

Early auditions took place in England in April 2007, though reports would not state which role the audition was for. One actor who auditioned for the role was Icelandic Jón Páll Eyjólfsson, who went to school with screenwriter Steve Kloves. Official casting news was scarce even as filming began. It was reported that Jack Davenport, Stephen Rea, Peter Rnic, Stuart Townsend, and Joseph Fiennes were each offered unspecified roles, although representatives of Townsend and Fiennes denied the reports. Warner Bros. announced in a press release on 16 November 2007 that casting for the film had been completed.


The special edition two-disc DVD for Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix contained two sneak peeks of the film, while the US edition included an additional clip. Warner Bros and MSN will run an online Order of the Phoenix quiz, with the prize being a walk-on part in the film. As with the previous films, EA Games will produce a video game based on the film.


Half-Blood Prince won the 2007 award for film you "Can't Wait For".

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