Featured in the March 2023 issue of The Rowling Library Magazine.

About the rumours of a Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Movie

934 words.

These past few weeks, rumors have resurfaced about a possible film adaptation of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, almost like a yearly tradition. Every January of each year, British tabloids or blogs of dubious reputation publish articles about how Warner Bros. is working on a movie version of the successful Harry Potter play. The first time was in 2017, back when the play had only been on stage for a few months. Since then, the rumor has persisted, although it has never been proven right so far.

British newspaper The Sun recently reported that Warner Bros. had concrete plans to bring the wizard’s on-stage story to the big screen. The media outlet claims that Warner Bros. wants to make a trilogy, and would be eager to use the original actors: Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson. When reading this news, The Rowling Library contacted its sources at the studio, and their response was positive: Warner Bros. does have these plans in mind.

According to what an inner source told The Rowling Library, Warner Bros. considers Harry Potter one of its star characters in cinema. They believe that since Fantastic Beasts did not have the same impact on the audience, Harry Potter’s return to the big screen could be a way to break all records once again. In fact Warner Bros. believe that the return of the golden trio (Radcliffe, Grint, and Watson) would generate even more excitement than what happened with Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021), and they even predict that it could reach the same levels as Avatar or the Avengers movies at the box office.

So why can’t we consider this news? The fact that Warner Bros. wants to make more Harry Potter movies is not such a big surprise: the studio knows that such movies would be a guaranteed success, and it would be very foolish of them to pass on this opportunity. However, this won’t be happening until one person allows this project to go through: J.K. Rowling herself.

For Warner Bros. to be able to move forward with the project, the British writer must approve it. Without her approval, the movie studio can’t move forward. As of today, it seems difficult to imagine J.K. Rowling saying “yes” to this project, for several reasons. First, the author said on several occasions that Cursed Child was always intended to be a stage play, and nothing more. In fact, when the movie rumors first appeared in 2017, she even published an official statement to clarify the situation: “A rumor has made its way all the way into the press that Harry Potter and the Cursed Child will be made into a film – and not just one film! A trilogy, with Dan, Emma, and Rupert returning to their original roles, to be released in 2026. I have no idea how these stories emerge, but to set the record straight once and for all: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is a stage play, it was conceived and written as a stage play, it was always intended to be a stage play and nothing else, and there are absolutely no plans for it to become a movie, a novel, a puppet show, a cartoon, a comic book series or Cursed Child on Ice.”

However, it has happened in the past that J.K. Rowling changed her mind, and one might think that she could very well do it again. But her relationship with Warner Bros. these past few years seems a bit cloudy: Rowling’s silence during the promotion of the third Fantastic Beasts movie was said to be due to the lack of support from Warner Bros towards her, resulting in her not supporting the movie she wrote the screenplay for. That said, Warner Bros. is now being led by David Zaslav, who has publicly stated that he supports Rowling, meaning the relationship between J.K. Rowling and the studio could change for the best.

The last point to take in consideration, in our opinion, is that even if Warner Bros. manages to convince J.K. Rowling to adapt Harry Potter and the Cursed Child into a series of movies, another very important parameter could go against the achievement of this project. Warner Bros. seems to want the original trio to reprise their roles as Harry, Ron and Hermione, but this doesn’t seem likely to appear. When the writer shared her thoughts on gender ideology these past few months, the actors distanced themselves from her statements, even sometimes condemning them, creating a large enough rift between them to make this movie collaboration very unlikely.

We couldn’t finish this article without reminding that the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child play is the Wizarding World project in which J.K. Rowling was the most involved, books aside. In fact, her level of collaboration was much greater than in any of the original Harry Potter films or theme parks. For this reason, would it be possible for her to hand the project over to the Warner Bros. studio?

Rumors of a Cursed Child movie have existed for years, and it becomes clear that they may end up being true. At the moment, it’s not surprising that the idea is being discussed in the Warner Bros. offices every now and then, possibly discussing who could be casted and who could direct the movie, maybe even what the teasing posters could look like. But none of that makes it news, and the rumors in the press remain rumors until J.K. Rowling greenlights the project. All we can do for now is wonder if this will ever happen.

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