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J.K. Rowling Redesigns Official Website; Answers Fantastic Beasts Questions
Posted by Megs

Today J.K. Rowling has unveiled a new design to her official website. At the end of the introductory article, she answers some frequently asked Fantastic Beasts questions! The answers (including one on Chamber of Secrets) may be read below.

1.     Why couldn’t Newt just Apparate to the USA? Why did he go by boat?
Apparition becomes increasingly risky over long distances. As with most magic, much depends on the skill of the spell-caster: Apparition requires knowledge of the terrain to which one is moving, or the ability to visualise it clearly. Cross-continental Apparition would almost certainly result in severe injury or death.

Moreover, the beasts in Newt’s case had varying magical natures. Some could have Apparated with him, but others could not.

2.    Why did Newt go in through No-Maj customs?
He was transporting magical creatures at a time when this was illegal. No-Majs were far easier to fool than the wizarding checkpoint would have been.

3.    Why couldn’t Newt use ‘Accio’ to retrieve all his beasts?
‘Accio’ only works on inanimate objects. While people or creatures may be indirectly moved by ‘Accio-ing’ objects that they are wearing or holding, this carries all kinds of risks because of the likelihood of injury to the person or beast attached to an object travelling at close to the speed of light.

4.    Why isn’t Veritaserum used in interrogations?
It is, but skilled wizards can avoid its effects by using antidotes and charms. A gifted Occlumens could also resist Veritaserum.

5.    Why did ‘revelio’ undo the effects of Polyjuice Potion?
It didn’t. Grindelwald’s Transfiguration surpasses that of most wizards, so he used a spell, not a potion, to take on the appearance of Percival Graves.

6.    Why didn’t Harry Potter develop an Obscurus?
An Obscurus is developed under very specific conditions: trauma associated with the use of magic, internalized hatred of one’s own magic and a conscious attempt to suppress it.

The Dursleys were too frightened of magic ever to acknowledge its existence to Harry. While Vernon and Petunia had a confused hope that if they were nasty enough to Harry his strange abilities might somehow evaporate, they never taught him to be ashamed or afraid of magic. Even when he was scolded for ‘making things happen’, he didn’t make any attempt to suppress his true nature, nor did he ever imagine that he had the power to do so.

And finally, an oldie but a perennial favourite…
7.    Why wasn’t the Horcrux inside Harry destroyed when he was bitten by the Basilisk in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets?

A Horcrux can only be destroyed if its container is damaged beyond repair. Harry was healed by Fawkes. Had he died, the Horcrux would indeed have been destroyed.

PS I’m being asked all kinds of excellent questions about Fantastic Beasts that I can’t answer right now, because the answers would give away too much about future plots. If your burning question isn’t here, you are probably safe to assume that it will be answered in the sequels!

Filed Under: Fantastic Beasts Films, JK Rowling
Video: JK Rowling and Eddie Redmayne Talk Lumos at Fantastic Beasts Screening
Posted by Megs

This past Saturday we were in attendance at a special screening of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. J.K. Rowling and Eddie Redmayne spoke at the screening to support her charity, Lumos. They shed a light on the very important issue of children being institutionalized at orphanages. Their message of the evening was that if you want to help children donate to community based organizations rather than orphanages.

The special advance screening, of the new Warner Bros. feature film, with box office ticket sales and proceeds from an online sweepstakes going directly to support Lumos’ work, is part of We Are Lumos Worldwide, a global campaign to raise awareness and urge people to get involved with the non-profit organization’s work to bring the 8 million hidden children in orphanages around the world to light, and get them home to families.

Lumos have sent over a short clip from their conversation.

Update: The full video is now available:

Sitting across from each other on the stage of perhaps the most celebrated concert hall in America, before an enthralled sold-out audience, the acclaimed writer and actor talked at length about the work of Lumos in helping children around the world to leave orphanages and institutions and return them to their families.

“We know that children who are raised in institutions suffer developmental delays, that they tend to be physically stunted, they normally have psychological trauma – it is just not what nature intended for children to be herded together and not given individual love and care,” said J.K. Rowling. “This is an entirely solvable issue. Lumos’ ambition – and we believe it’s achievable – is that by 2050, we will have ended institutionalization globally.”

She concluded: “The last thing I would say, particularly to young people in the audience today – I would reiterate that we need to change minds… do a little bit of research, and make sure you are supporting families to stay together.”

The two artists went on to talk about the new film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, and were joined on stage by director David Yates and cast members Ezra Miller, Dan Fogler, Katherine Waterston and Alison Sudol, before introducing the film to the nearly 3,000 guests at Carnegie Hall.

Filed Under: Eddie Redmayne, Fantastic Beasts Films, JK Rowling
HBO Acquires Rights for ‘Cormoran Strike’ in US and Canada
Posted by Megs

Deadline reports that HBO has acquired the rights for BBC One’s adaption of J.K. Rowling’s Cormoran Strike series. We reported a rumor of this partnership back in November of last year.

Tom Burke will star as the detective in Cormoran Strike, which will air as three separate event series, the three-hour The Cuckoo’s Calling, two-hour The Silkworm and two-hour Career Of Evil. Jo also confirmed via Twitter that Robin Ellacott has been cast but left us in suspense as to who it will be.

J.K. Rowling executive produces the series and two writers have worked on the episodes. Ben Richards wrote The Cuckoo’s Calling and The Silkworm, and Tom Edge wrote Career of Evil. Michael Keillor will direct The Cuckoo’s Calling. Filming starts this fall in London.

Filed Under: JK Rowling, Robert Galbraith, The Cormoran Strike Mysteries
‘Be the Light’ TShirt Available to Benefit Lumos; Video Interview with JK Rowling
Posted by Megs

J.K. Rowling revealed a new limited edition tshirt at this weekend’s Lumos Gala performance of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. The ‘Be the Light’ T-shirts feature inspirational words from the author’s Very Good Lives Harvard commencement speech in 2008: “We do not need magic to transform our world; we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already”. They are available to buy now at www.represent.com/lumos. At least 60% of the retail price will go to support Lumos programmes around the world.

The author addressed an audience of Harry Potter fans of all ages prior to the special gala performance to benefit Lumos, the non-profit organisation she founded to help end the institutionalisation of children globally by 2050.

“Children need, deserve and have a right to families,” she said. “Thank you, from everyone at Lumos, for helping us achieve our ambition of bringing eight million children back into the light. It is, to paraphrase Albus Dumbledore, not easy, but it is right.”

Thanks to the generosity of the play’s producers – Sonia Friedman, Colin Callender and Harry Potter Theatrical Productions – and Lumos’ 100% Pledge, all funds raised at the gala performance will go directly to Lumos’ work to transform the lives of some of the world’s most disadvantaged children. The special gala performance today is one of a series of events in the We Are Lumos Worldwide global campaign to raise awareness and urge people to get involved with the non-profit organisation’s work to bring the hidden children to light and get them home to families. The campaign was officially launched with a Facebook Live interview the previous evening (Saturday 17 September) between J.K. Rowling and writer and broadcaster, Lauren Laverne.

Poppy Miller, Paul Thornley, Stuart Ramsey, Sam Clemmett, J.K. Rowling, Anthony Boyle, Noma Dumezweni, and Alex Price. Photo by Dave Benett / Getty Image for Lumos.

Jo also took part in a Facebook Live video to talk about Lumos and their new initiative this past weekend. The interview marks the official launch of We Are Lumos Worldwide; a global campaign to raise awareness of the eight million children living in orphanages around the world, and the work that Lumos is doing to help them return to family life.

Filed Under: Harry Potter And The Cursed Child, JK Rowling
J.K. Rowling to Talk on Facebook Live About Lumos This Saturday
Posted by Megs

J. K. Rowling, will shine a light on millions of the world’s most disadvantaged children in orphanages this weekend, in an exclusive Facebook Live global broadcast. In conversation with writer and broadcaster Lauren Laverne in London on Saturday 17 September at 8.15pm BST / 3.15pm ET / 12.15 PT she will illuminate the work of Lumos, which she founded a decade ago to return children from orphanages and institutions to families.  The broadcast will be streamed live via the  Lumos Facebook page.

There is also a new limited edition ‘Be the Light’ T-shirt on sale today – at least 60% of the retail price goes to Lumos programmes to help children. The shirt features a quote from J.K. Rowling from her Very Good Lives speech given at a Harvard commencement ceremony in 2008. The ‘Be the Light’ T-shirts feature a design using inspirational words from the author: “We do not need magic to transform our world; we carry all the power we need inside ourselves already” and are available to buy now at www.represent.com/lumos

More from the press release may be read below:

People are invited to submit a question for J.K. Rowling about Lumos’ work and the estimated eight million children living in institutional care, separated from families and exposed to abuse, harm and neglect.  Questions can be sent this week via the We Are Lumos Worldwide campaign website and some will be selected to be read out on the night.

The Facebook Live event marks the start of the We Are Lumos Worldwide global campaign to raise awareness and urge people to get involved with the non-profit organisation’s work to bring the hidden children to light and get them home to families.  The campaign will include:

  • A gala performance of the play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts One and Two at the Palace Theatre in London’s West End on Sunday 18 September, where J.K. Rowling will introduce the play and talk about Lumos.  All proceeds from this event will go towards Lumos programmes around the world.
  • A special advance screening, benefiting Lumos, of the new Warner Bros feature film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them following an on stage conversation between J.K. Rowling and the film’s star Eddie Redmayne on Saturday 12 November at Carnegie Hall in New York City.

Written by J.K. Rowling, the film is inspired by the Hogwarts textbook Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, written by the author’s character, magizoologist Newt Scamander.  The film opens in 1926 in New York, as Newt Scamander, played by Academy Award winner Eddie Redmayne, has just completed a global excursion to find and document an extraordinary array of magical creatures.

Thanks to the generosity of J.K. Rowling and others, 100% of all public donations, including funds raised from the events in the We Are Lumos Worldwide campaign, will go directly to Lumos’ programmes helping thousands of children to leave orphanages and return to families, giving them a real chance in life.

The We Are Lumos Worldwide campaign will increase understanding of this global problem affecting an estimated eight million children hidden away in orphanages and large-scale residential care, the majority of whom are not orphans.

As part of this awareness raising, Harry Potter stars and Lumos ambassadors Warwick Davis, Evanna Lynch and Bonnie Wright have visited programmes in Moldova and Haiti to find out more about this vital work.  Films of their visits will be released in the coming weeks.

Fans, supporters and celebrities everywhere are invited, as part of the We Are Lumos Worldwide campaign, to Be the Light in the lives of eight million forgotten children, living in the darkest of places.

The Facebook Live global broadcast will take place on Saturday 17 September at 8.15pm BST / 3.15pm ET / 12.15pm PT.

Filed Under: JK Rowling
Last Chance to See Lumos Gala Performance of Cursed Child on Sept 18
Posted by Megs

J.K. Rowling’s charity, Lumos, and the producers of the stage play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child announced today that a third and final online auction of tickets to the Lumos gala performance on Sunday 18th September would be released. This is a last chance to bid for tickets to attend the event. This final auction closes at 6pm on Sunday 21st August

Fans eager to see the two-part play will be able to bid on ticket packages for this special performance to benefit Lumos, which will be personally introduced by J.K. Rowling. Over 100 tickets are available in a selection of packages that are combined with extra gifts including signed copies of the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child script book, Hogwarts maps created by graphic designers MinaLima and meals at London restaurants near to the theatre.

Opening bids for the performances of Parts One and Two on Sunday 18th September will start at the box office face value. The auction runs for just four days, from today until 21st August on the online auction website Givergy.

Thanks to the generosity of the play’s producers and Lumos’ 100% Pledge, every penny donated and raised in the auction will go directly to Lumos’ Families Not Orphanages Fund, which will support children in the countries where Lumos works to leave orphanages and return to a family life. Donations do not go towards administration, fundraising or overhead costs.

The Lumos gala performance of both parts of the play is the start of a worldwide campaign for Lumos this Autumn called We Are Lumos Worldwide which aims to enhance awareness of the harm caused to children placed in orphanages, and raise funds for the Families Not Orphanages Fund. The campaign culminates with an advance screening of the new film Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them in New York on 12th November, with a chance to see J.K. Rowling in conversation on stage at Carnegie Hall, with the film’s main star and Academy Award® winner Eddie Redmayne.

Filed Under: Harry Potter And The Cursed Child, JK Rowling

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