Washington: HBO Max has unveiled the first image from its upcoming special ‘Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts’, which is set to premiere on January 1, 2022.
The first look image was shared on HBO Max’s official Instagram account. “Like they never left. Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: #ReturnToHogwarts premieres New Year’s Day on HBO Max,” the caption read.
In the snap, which is sure to take the ‘Harry Potter’ fans on a nostalgic ride, actors Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, and Daniel Radcliffe can be seen all smiles, sitting in what appears to be the Gryffindor Common Room.
“The retrospective special will tell an enchanting making-of story through all-new in-depth interviews and cast conversations, inviting fans on a magical first-person journey through one of the most beloved film franchises of all time,” the streamer said in a release to announce the special last month, reported People magazine.
The reunion will mark the 20th anniversary of the eight-movie series that began with ‘Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone’, which had released in November 2001. All eight ‘Harry Potter’ movies are currently available to watch on HBO Max.
The reunion special will feature talent from the movies, including Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Ralph Fiennes, Jason Isaacs, Gary Oldman, Tom Felton, James Phelps, Oliver Phelps, Mark Williams, Bonnie Wright, Alfred Enoch, Matthew Lewis and Evanna Lynch.
However, J.K. Rowling, the author of the iconic book series, will not be interviewed in the reunion special but will be shown in archival footage about the movies. This is because of her anti-trans comments, which have been condemned by the core cast.
Rowling came under fire in June 2020 when she appeared to support anti-transgender sentiments in a series of tweets. Though she denied that her views on feminism are transphobic, she doubled down on her controversial remarks in an essay shared on her website days later.
Earlier this week, HBO Max released a teaser that didn’t include Radcliffe, Watson or Grint, but teased other alumni — like Coltrane (Hagrid) and Lewis (Neville Longbottom) — receiving their invitations to attend the reunion.
‘Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts’ is produced by Warner Bros. Unscripted Television in association with Warner Horizon at the Warner Bros. Studio Tour London — The Making of Harry Potter.
The reunion special is executive produced by Casey Patterson of Casey Patterson Entertainment and Pulse Films.