Last June to the day we were invited to The Making Of Harry Potter: Sweets And Treats Tour . This summer the Warner Bros studio tour is offering The Making Of Harry Potter: Finding the Philosopher’s Stone, a special seven-week feature to celebrate the fifteenth anniversary of the first Harry Potter film.15 years seems such a long time as I remember Kip, who’s just 14 watching them at 6 months old with his slightly older cousins.We watched The Philosopher’s Stone, twice a week when I was looking after my nephews for brother and then wife.Each time time we watched it, the whole room went quiet and all 3 boys were transfixed.We had never seen a film like it, full of magic, sadness, hope, danger and laughter of 3 heroic friends.Every summer we have a Harry Potter marathon, never tiring after watching it at all after all these years.Some families are obsessed with Disney, for us it’s Harry Potter.
Special seven-week feature to celebrate the fifteenth anniversary of the first Harry Potter film
Friday 22nd July – Monday 5th September
This summer, Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter will celebrate the epic quest Harry, Ron and Hermione embarked upon to find and protect the Philosopher’s Stone.Filmmakers used a range of special and visual effects techniques to create the various obstacles the trio faced on their journey. Visitors will discover how giant chess pieces were made to move, Fluffy the three-headed dog (and his saliva) was brought to life and the deadly Devil’s Snare was taken from page to screen.For the first time ever, there will be a moving display of the Devil’s Snare that the magical trio encountered in their hunt for the Philosopher’s Stone in Creature Effects. Visitors will have the chance to see and even touch the giant tentacles that have been specially created as they were in the films.
Head Propmaker Pierre Bohanna went through several processes to create the final version of the Philosopher’s Stone that can be seen on screen. When asked, J.K. Rowling said that the stone should look like an “uncut ruby”. A number of the early versions of the Philosopher’s Stone will be on display at the Tour and visitors will be able to see first-hand how it was created as expert prop makers demonstrate stages in the process.During this special feature, film fans will be invited to learn how one of Ron Weasley’s favourite games, Wizard’s Chess, was brought to life on a large scale by Special Effects Supervisor John Richardson and his team. The giant chess pieces will move across a chequered board, as if by magic, on the Tour’s backlot.
In addition to this, vats of slimy Troll snot, buckets of dribbling drool (of the three-headed dog variety) and pools of silvery unicorn blood will be showcased in the Tour and visitors will get to see demonstrations showing exactly how the gunk and goo were created. They will also have the chance to celebrate the bravery of not only Harry, Ron and Hermione but also Neville Longbottom. His pyjamas will be displayed in the Gryffindor common room as they were when he was placed in a Full Body-Bind Curse by a young Hermione.
Finding the Philosopher’s Stone Factsheet
Friday 22nd July – Monday 5th September
– Of all the scenes in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, Chris Columbus has said that he was “most excited” for the giant game of Wizard’s Chess.
– More than 32 Wizard’s Chess pieces were created out of clay for the final challenge Harry, Ron and Hermione faced. Some of them were 12ft high and weighed up to five hundred pounds.
– The only digital effects in the Wizard’s Chess scene are dust and debris that were added to enhance the visual impact of the explosions as Director Chris Columbus wanted as many practical effects as possible.
– Hagrid’s guard dog Fluffy has not only three heads but three distinct personalities. One was alert, one was smart and one was sleepy and the animators named each of them to keep things clear.
– Although Fluffy was primarily a CG animation, huge paws were created for actors to work with in close ups. Unfortunately, Fluffy’s drool was also a practical effect.
-When filming the scenes containing Devil’s Snare, a net was strung 10 feet off the ground and huge vines were laced through it. Harry, Ron and Hermione were then pulled through the net.
– When asked what the Philosopher’s Stone should look like, Jo Rowling described it as an “uncut ruby”.
– To create a shiny lustrous appearance to the Philosopher’s Stone, filmmakers placed a
small flame on top of the camera used to film it, giving the stone an extra hint of
Buy tickets- You need to book ahead
Allow a good 5 hours at least for your visit, you’ll need plenty of time to see the exhibits.There will be queues for the broomstick ride especially during the summer holidays.
Food- As we live a couple of hours there and back, we always made sense to take our own food and drink.
Travel- We travel up by train, buying our train tickets in advance.As I have a friends and family card this saves me money.I always ask for a London travel card which includes underground travel.
Extra info- Although most of the exhibits are within the aerodrome, The Backlog is outside.There plenty of loos and the wife is good.Take a power bank for your smartphone as you will take 90 million photos and social media users will be using every opportunity to share across networks.