Transmedia Franchise: Harry Potter

If you’ve never heard of Harry Potter then you must be from another planet or have been living under a rock for the past 20 years. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was first published in London  by J.K Rowling in 1997. It was released in the US in 1998 with the title word Philosopher changed to Sorcerer. This launched Harry Potter into the world known name that is has become today. There were six more books published that followed Harry Potter and his two friends continuously as they grew up and gained the knowledge on how to defeat the Dark Lord Voldemort. The books are immensely popular due to their ability to appeal to every age range and that they are entertaining while also teaching lessons about friendship and morals.

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In 2001, the first book was turned into a movie starring Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Ruphert Grint as the three title characters. With the launch of the movie, the series and franchise gained even more popularity and began it’s global domination. Many of the characters are now easily recognizable by anyone who has seen the movies and have become a part of the novels themselves.

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Companies began making dolls, electronic toys such as spellbooks or magic wands, and even publications of books referenced in the novels allowing fans and consumers to immerse themselves even deeper into the world of Harry Potter. Wizard robes were made so you could dress up as a character for Halloween and as each movie was released, a video game on the leading consoles of the time were released along with them allowing people to play as the characters and participate in classes at Hogwarts. In 2010, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter was built and open to the public at Universal Islands of Adventure down in Florida. This theme park allows park goers to truly immerse themselves in Harry Potter as they travel through Hogsmeade which is the popular village in the book and includes many wizard shops where you can eat popular candy from the novels and even drink butterbeer! There is even an Ollivander’s wand shop where goers can have a wand ‘choose’ them allowing maximum extractability.

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In 2011, the website Pottermore was released which allowed fans to read the Harry Potter novels in a new way. Viewers could journey through the books in a digitalized world with interactive pages relating to each chapter and could even go through the process of finally finding out what house they truly belong in since the process was made by J.K Rowling herself! It also gives super fans chances to learn previously unknown information and backstories from Mrs. Rowling, This site allows readers to visually see while still reading the novels.A Harry Potter convention, called Leaky Con was started allowing readers and fans alike to come interact with other fans and truly immerse themsleves through cosplaying or just joining in on the activities. Many of the secondary characters of the novel have become quite popular and J.K Rowling has gone so far as to even develop back stories for all of them which you can learn through Pottermore. Overall, Harry Potter has gained worldwide fame for it’s lovable characters and the wonderful story it tells.

 

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