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Monday, June 13, 2011

Muggle Monday (11): Review: Harry Potter: Film Wizardry by Brian Sibley

It's time for Muggle Monday, in which I post a quote, a video, or a significant piece of news from the Harry Potter franchise. This is somewhat inspired by the Mundane Monday posts by The Mundie Moms.

But let's be real as to why I made up this meme: I just want the opportunity to post something about Harry Potter.

This week, I'm posting my completely unbiased review of Harry Potter: Film Wizardry, by Brian Sibley. With just about a month left until Deathly Hallows Part 2, I felt this was the perfect opportunity to become better acquainted with this behind-the-scenes look into the Harry Potter film franchise.

Publisher: Harper Collins
Published: October 6, 2010
Pages: 160
Source: Bought
Rating: 5 Stars - Super Crazy Awesome!

Immerse yourself in the world of the spectacular Harry Potter film series, and learn why Yule Ball ice sculptures never melt, where Galleons, Sickles, and Knuts are really "minted," how to get a Hippogriff to work with actors, the inspiration behind Hogwarts castle, and why Dementors move the way they do. Written and designed in collation with the cast and crew that brought J. K. Rowling's celebrated novels to the silver screen, Harry Potter: Film Wizardry delivers an enchanting interactive experience, transporting readers to the wizarding world by sharing film-making secrets, unpublished photography and artwork, and exclusive stories from the stars. Full of removable facsimile reproductions of props and paper ephemera from the movies, this collectible volume offers a privileged look at the Harry Potter films and the talented group of Muggles that has made true movie magic.

This is not the only movie companion guide written by Brian Sibley. He is also the author of a companion guide for The Lord of the Rings. And I can see why Warner Brothers would have wanted to hire him for the job. Sibley has written a fully comprehensive behind-the-scenes look at the Harry Potter films. Harry Potter: Film Wizardry gives an insider view of the amount of work that has taken place at Leavesden Studios (where the majority of scenes in the movies have been filmed) over the years by thousands of crew members. I really felt that I got a full appreciation of the scale of the movies, the attention to detail, and what goes into making the sets, creatures, and props. How Stuart Craig, the production designer for all of the movies, has never received an Oscar for his work in the movies is beyond me. I can't even begin to list the interesting tidbits I learned in this book. There are simply too many of them! Of special note are the interludes by producer David Heyman, the man responsible for bringing J.K. Rowling's books to the big screen and doing so respectfully, as a true fan of the books himself. Harry Potter: Film Wizardry is a must read for any Harry Potter super fan!


  1. I love behind the scenes time things and I love Harry Potter! So I should totally check this out!

    Thanks for the review!

  2. I bought this awhile ago but just started reading it. It's wonderful. I love all the pictures and the cute extra Harry Potter touches.
    On a different note, do you listen to Mugglecast? I think it's the best HP podcast and I learn so much from it.

  3. Wow, this book looks awesome... I didn't know about it... BTW, I love your blog... all HP fans need to recover... (me included T.T )

  4. FUN!!! I love books like this that give you behind the scenes info, I always find the little trivia and tidbits I learn to be more interesting than the movie itself (even though I LOVE these movies). There's something just fascinating about knowing how movies work:) Thanks for sharing this Aylee!

  5. I am not a Harry Potter fanatic but I can see why this book would be fascinating to those who are. =) It is always great to see what went in to making the movie.

  6. Film guides are always fun, especially if you're a huge fan of the franchise! Glad to hear the Harry Potter film guide was done well! :)

  7. I do love film guides and this one sounds like a keeper!
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts on it, I hadn't heard about it, actually

  8. My 9yr old got this one for Christmas. I know she loves it...I will have to take a closer look. I am so very proud of her...she just finished the series last week. Only took her 5 months...so proud. :0)

  9. The films are truly amazing. They are so effortless with their magic and storytelling, that you don't stop to think what going on in the background.

    I think it is awesome that the producer is a HP fan! It shows.

  10. I'm going to have to ask for this for my birthday! My first love will always be the HP books, but the movies certainly always do them justice and are so magical. Thanks for sharing this. :)

  11. I got this for Christmas and just glanced through it. Apparently I really should sit down and read it. Thank you for the review. I'm snatching your button and posting it to my blog. It'll be my first one - yea!

  12. Thanks for commenting, everybody. I would definitely recommend this book for huge HP fans!

    Alison: Love Mugglecast! I used to listen to Pottercast too but no longer have the time and I like Mugglecast better.

    Jenny: I know what you mean, I often enjoy the behind-the-scenes of the movie more than the actual movie itself.

    Tracy: Wow, that's impressive for a 9 year old. I definitely wasn't that good a reader at that age.

  13. Sounds good! I'm not sure if I want to see all the behind the scenes stuff. It sounds so interesting and I love finding out factoids and stuff. But...it sort of takes away some of the magic for me.

  14. Nice! This definitely seems like a nice addition to the HP collection. Thanks for the recommendation. :)