The final installment of The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling drew in audiences around the world.
Released in theaters around the world on July 10, 2011, the film’s global box office total was 48.1 million.
The final part of the Harry Potter saga reunites old friends and brings new ones as Harry, Hermione, Ron, and their magical world come to an end.
The Harry Potter series has been endorsed by Stephen King, who called it “a brilliant piece of fiction”.
And it continues to grow in popularity years after its final installment was released. A recent search on Google for “Harry Potter” and “bestseller” returned more than 26 million results.
Why Is Harry Potter Still Popular?
The enduring popularity of Harry Potter is perhaps due to his optimistic view of the world and our place in it. Set in an alternative universe, the books and films posit that there is much more peace and joy than there is evil and suffering.
Even those who have endured hardship and tragedy can find comfort and joy in Harry Potter’s stories.
While the series doesn’t offer a completely positive message, it certainly gives the impression that life is beautiful and can be good; that suffering is a necessary part of growing up; and that friendship and courage can overcome any obstacle.
The Dark Side of Harry Potter
Whether or not one agrees with that underlying message, it’s undeniable that the Harry Potter books and films do possess a darker side. They explore some of the more challenging issues that young adults face today, such as racism, greed, jealousy, and hatred.
A close reading of the series reveals that although it promotes tolerance and positivity, it doesn’t shy away from the more challenging aspects of human nature. In fact, the books contain some pretty horrific moments that most children wouldn’t encounter until well into their adult years.
For example, in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Voldemort (the dark wizard who appears in all the Harry Potter books) kills a kitten during one of his mass killings. This horrific scene isn’t included in the films to spare young viewers’ sensibilities but is there for all to see if they choose to look.
In another part of the same book, Neville Longbottom (one of Harry’s friends who doesn’t stand a chance against Voldemort) is forced to watch his sister, Ginny, being tortured and killed right before his eyes. It’s a truly harrowing moment for Neville and one that will stay with him for the rest of his life. (The movie doesn’t go into much detail regarding this particular part of Ginny’s ordeal; however, it doesn’t have to since readers already know what happens.)
The Rise of Harry Potter
It’s been almost 10 years since the last Harry Potter book was published and over a decade since the last movie was released. During that time, the series’ popularity hasn’t diminished but has instead grown significantly. In fact, it’s now considered one of the best-selling adult series of all time.
This year alone, five Harry Potter books have already been released and another two are due out in the next few months. The last book in the series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, was published in paperback last week and the movie adaptation opens in theaters on September 26. It’s safe to assume that the series’ popularity will continue to rise as more and more people get their hands on a copy.
The Future of Harry Potter
With the recent success of the Harry Potter series, it’s tempting to imagine what else the author could do next. Could she create a franchise similar to Star Wars, using the Hogwarts students as its main characters? Could she find a way to tie up all the loose ends of the Harry Potter series in one final installment?
J.K. Rowling hasn’t officially said whether or not she’ll continue writing about the Harry Potter characters in the future. However, it would make sense for her to continue since she already has ideas for three more Harry Potter books.
The only question is whether or not she’ll ever get the chance to write them. J.K. Rowling has stated that she’ll stop writing about Harry Potter once the last book in the series has been published. At that point, she’ll have completed her contract with the magical, Harry Potter universe.
Until then, we have the movies. Are we really going to let a generation grow up without ever seeing Harry Potter in the flesh? With all the talented directors, artists, and producers at the Hallows’ Finale’s helm, I have no doubt that a Harry Potter movie will live up to and surpass our expectations. It might not be perfect but it will surely be magical!