Harry Potter needs a new sequel series with the original stars more than it needs spin-offs or prequels that don’t have the same appeal
Author and creator J.K. Rowling has been focused on the Fantastic Beasts prequel franchise, which has failed to capture the same energy, interest, or creative juice that Harry Potter has. The global box office for the first film was just slightly higher than the lowest-grossing Harry Potter film (Prisoner of Azkaban), and the second entry in that series dropped by almost $200 million. The upcoming third film, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore, is barely a whisper on the lips of Wizarding World fans with hype at an all-time low. Rowling wrote the scripts for the Fantastic Beasts series (with an assist from Harry Potter screenwriter Steve Kloves on the latest entry), which aren’t based on any previously published books, taking place many decades prior to Harry Potter’s birth. The Fantastic Beasts franchise was an attempt to keep The Wizarding World going, but without Harry Potter, giving the cast of those films and the franchise itself a little rest, but still keeping the magic alive otherwise. Sadly, it’s been more of a curse than a potion of Amortentia for the franchise.
With HBO Max looking to expand on the properties it owns (and, ultimately, its subscriber base), and WB looking for a way to bring back the magic of Harry Potter, now is the perfect time to lure the original cast back for a Harry Potter series. Spinoffs and prequels are fine now and again, but chasing that dragon is the wrong course of action for the franchise. Radcliffe, Watson, and Grint (as well as the rest of the Hogwarts graduating class from that time frame) are all primed to return to the characters they’ve brought to life and made into global icons, which continues to be the most popular and recognizable names in The Wizarding World. Now in their early 30s, the Hogwarts originals are at a perfect age and place in their careers to pick up their wands again and explore a more mature and complex journey into The Wizarding World with new threats, new characters, new magic, and new stories for generations new and old.
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Being in their early 30s, Radcliffe, Watson, and Grint (as well as the rest of their graduating class) could pick up a decade or more after Hogwarts and have multiple seasons leading up to the final moments of Deathly Hallows Part 2, where they’re sending their own kids to the school. They could then carry on with additional seasons right after if all goes well, carrying on towards an adaptation of The Cursed Child when the actors are at the same middle-age range as their characters. JK Rowling could act as a consultant, co-showrunner, or writer, ensuring that the Harry Potter series is carrying on her intentions (and following a clear narrative roadmap), while inviting in new creative talent that’s grown up with the series to inject their own ideas to further The Wizarding World into the future. The possibilities are endless, but the way forward is through the things that created the true magic of the series, which comes from “The Boy Who Lived” and his Hogwarts classmates.