Now that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 has set record-breaking revenues, it’s been interesting to step back from the final film and reflect on the broader impact of the franchise.
Although some have commented, “Harry Potter saved reading,” that might be a stretch. Regardless, HP was the first recent blockbuster to blur the lines between tween/teen/adult reading. As a result, the co-viewing we’ve always encouraged at the screen became a reality with co-reading, as HP crossed generational lines. These “children’s books” became “must-reads” for adults.
The growth of social media paralleled the growth of the Harry Potter franchise, and reading became part of the collective social culture.
Although the current film might be the final Warner Brothers HP release, a theme park, videogames and the yet-to-be-launched Pottermore website guarantee we’ll see the HP impact long-term. If you need proof: Warner Brothers is said to be turning Leavesden Studios, the London site for eight of the HP films, into an 85,000 foot attraction. Tentative opening date: April, just prior to the Olympics.