Wizarding World Updates for 2022 (it’s a big year for Harry Potter fans!)
The year started with a dose of Harry Potter nostalgia, thanks to the Return to Hogwarts 20th Anniversary reunion special, and there are a raft of new things for Potterheads to look forward to this year. From games and the new Fantastic Beasts to changes to the Cursed Child, we take a look at them all.
Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts
(Image credit: HBO Max)
If you haven’t had a chance to check it out, the reunion special dropped on January 1st and was like a warm hug for Harry Potter fans. While it’s hard to believe that it has been 20 years since the first film was released, it was a joy to hear from so many of the cast – and revisit so many of the iconic locations! It’s still available to watch on TVNZ On Demand, so grab a Butterbeer and curl up for an hour with old friends.
Harry Potter: Hogwarts Tournament of Houses
Superfans will also have delved into the competition to win the Hogwarts House Cup – Tournament of Houses (TVNZ On Demand). If you haven’t checked it out yet, it’s a competition of Harry Potter fans, sorted into their Hogwarts Houses (Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Slytherin, and Ravenclaw) to test their knowledge of all things Wizarding World. It’s a bit of fun, with some special guest appearances, and a great way to cheer on your house.
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone – 25th Anniversary Edition
While the film has just marked its 20th anniversary, the first book is about to reach a quarter of a century! 25th Anniversary editions of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone will be available from 9th June 2022. This limited-edition release features new artwork and bonus content, and will only be available for 1 year, making it a true collector’s edition.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
(Image credit: Matt Murphy)
If you haven’t heard of the Cursed Child, it’s a play that begins a new Harry Potter adventure starting where the epilogue of the final film left off – 19 years later when Harry, Ron & Hermione’s children are at Hogwarts. With spectacular effects and a story full of drama and intrigue, it’s an amazing experience to see. We’re used to special effects in films, but watching magic happen live before your eyes is truly thrilling.
After a successful run in Melbourne, beginning in 2019, changes are now afoot. Following changes implemented last year in New York and San Francisco, the ‘reimagined’ play cuts back the full 5 hours 15 mins of the original 2-part play into a more manageable 3 and a half hours (including intermission). While the 2-part play is continuing (for now) in London and Hamburg, if you’re wanting to catch the full version a little closer to home, you’d better get in quickly – it ends in Melbourne on March 27th. The reimagined play will open in Melbourne in May this year.
The word is, the play won’t be headed to New Zealand, so for Kiwi Potterheads it’s worth a trip to the West Island to check it out. With our own Gareth Reeves starring as Harry Potter, there’s a bit of New Zealand in every performance!
The Magical Music of Harry Potter
For another live experience from the Wizarding World, check out the concert series that is touring the country in May-June 2022: The Magical Music of Harry Potter. While international versions of this concert have had guest appearances from some of the actors, there’s no confirmation of special guest stars in New Zealand at this time. The concert mixes a live orchestra playing music from the films, and Cursed Child, accompanied by segments of film, a choir, and magician Rob Lake, to bring the magic of Harry Potter to life.
Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore
April is looking to be a treat too, with the latest instalment of the Fantastic Beasts series, The Secrets of Dumbledore, coming to cinemas. Focusing on the adventures of Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) and with Jude Law reprising his role as a young Albus Dumbledore, the latest film sees them battling to stop Grindelwald from taking over the wizarding world and going to war with the muggles. The effects are bound to be amazing, and we’re looking forward to more of the series’ collection of creatures, who will help (and hinder!) our heroes.
Fantastic Beasts: A Natural History
(Image credit: BBC)
Stephen Fry, who read the UK versions of the Harry Potter audiobooks, is returning to the Wizarding World with a new documentary for the BBC. Fantastic Beasts: A Natural History explores the weird and wonderful creatures created specifically for the Harry Potter universe, as well as well-known mythical creatures, and the real-life creatures that helped inspire them. While this has aired in the UK on February 27th, it is due to air in the US on April 1st. We eagerly await information on when and where we’ll be able to see it here.
We wait with bated breath for the upcoming game Hogwarts Legacy. In this game you’ll play as your own character, who is a student at Hogwarts in the 1800s. Your late acceptance into Hogwarts isn’t the only strange thing, as you discover you have a secret power that you can use for good or for evil.
The game is set for release later this year, on a variety of consoles. The level of detail looks amazing! You can explore Hogwarts, master spells, and interact with magical creatures. Then it's up to you to choose which path you’ll take: battling against the Dark Forces, or joining them!
Harry Potter: Magic Awakened
Another game on the horizon for Harry Potter fans is Magic Awakened. This mobile game is coming soon to the App Store and Google Play store. It was released in China and Hong Kong late last year so you can learn lots about this game if you go digging. Like Hogwarts Legacy, it’s a role-playing game where you can explore the world of Harry Potter, this time set 10 years after the events of the Deathly Hallows. It includes card-based duels where you can collect spell cards and cast them to defeat your enemies. We’re super excited to give the Quidditch match a go! You can sign up now to be notified when the game is released – we’re just hoping it’s soon!
With all these exciting new things to look forward to, don’t forget that Harry Potter Day is coming up on May 2nd – the date commemorates the Battle of Hogwarts from the Deathly Hallows. We’ve got some exciting new costumes, including Luna Lovegood, Newt Scamander, and Hagrid coming, so keep your eyes peeled! We've been kept busy trying to keep up with the house robes, which are flying off the shelves (pun intended!), both in adult’s and kid’s sizes. We also have some old favourites returning, such as the brown sorting hat, golden snitch, Spectrespecs, and the Nimbus 2000.
- Biz Wisdom