The Harry Potter books
News in the media: 2004-2006
- 2004-JUN-4: The next Harry Potter movie, "Harry
Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" premiered in the U.S.
and Canada. It is based on the third book in the projected series of seven. Warner Brothers has made available a trailer which features Gary Oldman as
Sirius Black and Michael Gambon as the new Albus Dumbledore. See:
- 2004-JUN-7: The Harry Potter 3 movie was been a tremendous success
during its first weekend. It grossed U.S. $92.65 million. This is the
third largest three-day opening weekend of any movie in history, behind
$114.8 million for Spider-Man and $108 million for Shrek 2.
Dan Fellman, head of distribution for the movie's distributor Warner
"I guess audiences are still crazy about
Harry....What's fabulous about the series is, I think, as the actors
have aged, so has the audience, and that's created a bond between them.
The other thing is, as the actors have gotten older, they've gotten
better, so the performances are the best yet." The movie "reunites
Daniel Radcliffe as Harry with Rupert Grint and Emma Watson as his
allies at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry as they unravel the
mystery of an escaped sorcerer (Gary Oldman) linked to the deaths of
- 2005-JUN-07: A cash prize awaits a real "Harry Potter."
ABEbooks.com is attempting to
track down the Harry Potters of the world. They have found four: A Latin
teacher in Michigan, a retired seaman in Florida, a maker of children's
videos in Texas, and a lawyer in the UK. Potters are invited to tell
their stories on the ABE website. The story that the web site's visitors
finds most interesting will win $1,000. An additional $1,000 will be
donated to her or his favorite charity.
- 2005-JUL-16: "Harry
Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," the sixth book in the Harry Potter seven
book series, is scheduled to be released. Many bookstores held parties
on the evening of JUL-15, leading up to the sale of the book at
- 2005-NOV-18: The movie: "Harry
Potter and the Goblet of Fire" opened across North America. Its run
time is 2 hours and 30 minutes. It has been given a MPAA rating
of PG-13, because of sequences of fantasy, violence, and frightening
- 2006-MAY-02: Barna Group reports that more than 80% of
American teens have personally read books or watched movies in the Harry
Potter series. Among church going teens, the percentage is 77%; among
born-again teens, the percentage is 78%. This is in spite of strong
campaigns by conservative Christian faith groups against the books and
movies. Many Fundamentalist and other Evangelical
leaders have equated the imaginary, fantasy witchcraft in the books and
movies with Wicca and other Neo-pagan earth-centered religions, and have
feared the effect of both on their youth. Barna found that about one in
eight teenagers indicated that the material increased their interest in
witchcraft; they did not indicate whether this number refers to
imaginary witchcraft or real Neopagan religion.
The Barna report states:
"Overall, a majority of teens -- Christian
or other -- are ingesting the mythology of the child wizard without
any guidance from their parents or church leaders. Instead, teens
are feeling their way through the spiritual themes either on their
own or with the influence of their peers."
David Kinnaman, director of the research and
vice president of The Barna Group, stated,
"While the Potter books generated an
unprecedented following, it has been the movies that have helped
propel the story into the mainstream of the Mosaic generation. But
while the vast majority of teenagers and adolescents find
entertainment value in Potter, most [conservative] Christian leaders
and parents have responded by either condemning the series or
ignoring it. That response hasn't worked because most teens still
consume the stories -- along with dozens more like it -- but without
the critical input that would help them make sense of the
supernatural dimension described in the Potter universe."
- "Harry Potter 3 takes no prisoners," Associated Press.
Published in the Toronto Star, 2004-JUN-7, Page B3.
- "Cash prize awaits Harry Potter namesake," The Toronto Star,
2005-JUN-07, Page C6.
- "Harry Potter Exposure Increases, Left Unchallenged," Christian
Post, 2006-MAY-02, at:
Copyright © 2004 to 2008 by Ontario Consultants on Religious
Originally written: 2004-JUN-1
Latest update: 2008-AUG-19
Author: B.A. Robinson