by Robert Needlman, M.D., F.A.A.P.

If you ask most children why they like Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone or any of the three blockbuster books that followed it, they'll probably tell you that the books are funny or exciting, or perhaps "cool." But even though kids might not focus on the moral messages in these works of fiction, they certainly come across, loud and clear. Harry Potter both entertains and teaches. But what exactly are the messages, and are they something you want your children to learn?

Morality in fantasy
Like almost all classic fantasies, the Harry Potter books center on the grand battle between Good and Evil, with the fate of the world in the balance. The struggle between Harry Potter and Lord Voldemort is in essence the same battle that rages in Narnia in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, in Middle Earth in The Lord of the Rings, and in "a galaxy far, far away" in Star Wars. The battle that is fought with wands or swords mirrors a moral battle within the heart of the hero: Will Harry give in to fear? Will he be able to maintain his all-important friendships even though he is famous and clearly gifted? Can Harry be good and still break the school's rules all the time? Moral questions and dilemmas are at the heart and soul of the Harry Potter stories.

Morals and morality
To answer these questions, it's helpful to draw a distinction between morals and morality. Morals are messages or rules, as in "the moral to the story is, Be nice to strangers." Morality is the foundation of beliefs on which the story as a whole rests. The Harry Potter series is rich on both fronts. Grown-ups seeking moral messages can find some truly wonderful ones in these books, such as

  • Always use the proper name for things. Fear of a name increases fear of the thing itself.

  • The truth is a beautiful and terrible thing, and should therefore be treated with great caution.

  • To have been loved so deeply, even though the person who loved us is gone, will give us some protection forever.

  • It takes a great deal of bravery to stand up to our enemies, but just as much to stand up to our friends.

  • It is our choices that show what we truly are, far more than our abilities.
But if you set out to look for the overall morality of Harry Potter, you won't find it summed up neatly in any particular sentence. Rather, it's to be found in the way the whole story is put together, in the wonderful and vast cast of characters and the dilemmas they face. This core of morality speaks more loudly than the morals (as rich as they are) because children experience the morality of the stories in their imaginations, while the moral messages are only words. (The same principle functions in real life: Children learn more from the morality they experience in their homes than they do from the spoken moral messages their parents or teachers deliver.)

Here is what one insightful 12-year-old girl (who just happens to be my daughter) had to say about the morality of the stories:
  • People are different. Some are really cool. Some are really horrible, and you just have to deal with it.

  • You have to look past the things you see, past first appearances.

  • It's a lot about diversity--social and economic.

  • People need second chances.

  • Friends are really important. Parents are really important.

  • Breaking rules is usually a really bad idea. But if you're a wizard, it's OK.
  •  
What children take from fiction
The Harry Potter stories aren't simple, and there's no sure, simple way to tell what messages or meaning a child will take away from them. Different children will find different meanings according to where they are in their own development. Because children--and adults--have to use their imaginations to make the world of Harry Potter come alive for themselves, they are also free to take away the meanings they need, and ignore those that they don't have use for.

I think that this multipurpose nature is one thing that marks the Harry Potter stories as truly good fiction. It's also remarkable what is not to be found in the stories given their great popularity: no graphic brutality, no guns, no sex, and no coarse language--all elements that seem to be inescapable parts of the usual media fodder offered to children. No matter what advertisers and TV producers seem to think, children and adults don't really need or even necessarily want a steady diet of high-octane, edgy stimulation. What we crave is a good story about characters we can care about, and a story that speaks to the moral issues we confront every day. Harry Potter gives us that.

 

 

 

 

 


NAME: Harry James Potter
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: July 31, 1980
PARENTS: James Potter/Lily Evans-Potter
SIBLINGS: None
FRIENDS: Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Hagrid, Dean Thomas, Seamus Finnigan, Fred & George Weasley, Lee Jordan, Fleur Delacour, Viktor Krum, Katie Bell, Angelina Johnson, the Weasleys, etc.
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Draco Malfoy, Lucius Malfoy, Dudley Dursley, Gregory Goyle, Vincent Crabbe, Piers Polkiss, Barty Crouch Jr., Vernon & Petunia Dursley, Rita Skeeter, Dementors, Peter Pettigrew.
PETS: Hedwig the Owl
POSITION: Gryffindor student, seeker for the Gryffindor Quidditch team, "The Boy Who Lived," Triwizard Tournament competitor, and a Hogwarts hero.
QUOTES: "I'm a what?" / "You know your mother, [Draco] Malfoy? - that expression she's got, like she's dung under her nose? Has she always looked like that or was it just becuase you were with her?"



NAME: Ronald "Ron" Weasley
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: March 1
PARENTS: Arthur and Molly Weasley
SIBLINGS: Bill, Charlie, Percy, George & Fred, Ginny.
FRIENDS: Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Hagrid, Dean Thomas, Seamus Finnigan, Neville Longbottom.
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Peter Pettigrew, Draco Malfoy, Gregory Goyle, Vincent Crabbe.
PETS: Pigwideon the Minute Owl ("Pig"); used to have Scabbers the Rat
POSITION: Gryffindor student, misrepresented as the "Potter sidekick."
QUOTES: "Can I see Uranus, too, Lavender?" / "I want to fix that in my memory forever - Draco Malfoy, the amazing bouncing ferret." / "Er - shall I make a cup of tea?"



NAME: Hermione Granger
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: September 19
PARENTS: Mr. and Mrs. Granger (dentists)
SIBLINGS: None
FRIENDS: Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hagrid, Ginny Weasley, Neville Longbottom, Eloise Midgen, Angelina Johnson, Viktor Krum
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Peter Pettigrew, Draco Malfoy, Millicent Bulstrode, Pansy Parkinson, Parvati Patil, Padma Patil, Lavender Brown, Barty Crouch Jr., Rita Skeeter
PETS: Crookshanks the Cat
POSITION: Gryffindor student, one of the best students at Hogwarts
QUOTES: "Are you sure that's a real spell? Well it's not very good is it? I've tried a few simple spells myself and it's all worked for me. Nobody in my family's magic at all, it was ever such a surprise when I got my letter, but I was ever so pleased, of course, it's the best school of witchcraft there is I've heard - I've learened all the course books by heart of course. I just hope it will be enough - I'm Hermione Granger, by the way, who are you?"

 

Neville LongbottomNAME: Neville Longbottom
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Frank and Mrs. Longbottom (former Aurors); lives with grandmother
SIBLINGS: None
FRIENDS: Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, Ginny Weasley, Dean Thomas, Seamus Finnigan, Hagrid, Colin Creevey
ENEMIES: Draco Malfoy, Professor Severus Snape
PETS: Trevor the Toad
POSITION: Gryffindor student, soon-to-be cast in new light (by 5th book)
QUOTES: "I'm worth twelve of you, Malfoy."

 


Draco Malfoy
NAME: Draco Malfoy
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: Should be the Winter Solstice
PARENTS: Lucius and Narcissa Malfoy
SIBLINGS: None known
FRIENDS: Gregory Goyle, Vincent Crabbe, Pansy Parkinson, Blaise Zabini
ENEMIES: Harry Potter, any Weasley, Hermione Granger, Barty Crouch Jr. who turned him into a ferret
PETS: An eagle owl and barn owl who bring him things
POSITION: Slytherin student, seeker for Slytherin Quidditch team, son of Death Eater
QUOTES: "You'll soon find out some some wizarding families are much better than others, Potter. You don't want to go making friends with the wrong sort. I can help you there."

 


Fred and George WeasleyNAMES: Fred and George Weasley
AGE: 16
BIRTHDAY: April
PARENTS: Arthur and Molly Weasley
SIBLINGS: Bill, Charlie, Percy, Ron, Ginny.
FRIENDS: Lee Jordan, Angelina Johnson, Katie Bell.
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, their mother on certain days.
PETS: Any cockroaches still living under their bed after experiments!
POSITION: Gryffindor students, Beaters on the Gryffindor Quidditch team, twin trouble makers.
FACTS: Remember, these two are twin brothers! That's why they are together in one picture.
QUOTES: "We know we're Gred and Forge." / "Make way, extremely evil wizard coming through!"


Cedric Diggory
NAME: Cedric Diggory
AGE: 17
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Mr. and Mrs. Amos Diggory
SIBLINGS: None
FRIENDS: Cho Chang, Harry Potter, most Hufflepuffs, the Quidditch team
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Peter Pettigrew.
PETS: N/A
POSITION: Hufflepuff student & Quidditch team Seeker, dated Cho Chang, Tri-Wizard Tournament competitor.
MORTALITY: Passed away in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
QUOTES: "Take a bath, okay? And, er, take the egg with you." / "Wands out, d'you reckon?"


Fleur Delacour
NAME: Fleur Delacour
AGE: 17
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Madam Delacour
SIBLINGS: Gabrielle
FRIENDS: Ron Weasley, Harry Potter, Roger Davies.
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle.
PETS: N/A
POSITION: Beauxbaton student, Tri-Wizard Tournament competitor, rumored to be next DADA professor
QUOTES: "Oh, vairy funny joke, Meester Bagman." / "Madame Maxime! Zey are saying zat zis little boy is to compete also!"

 

 

Viktor KrumNAME: Viktor Krum
AGE: 18
BIRTHDAY: Unknown
PARENTS: Mr. and Mrs. Krum
SIBLINGS: N/A
FRIENDS: Hermione Granger, Harry Potter, the rest of the Bulgarian Quidditch team
ENEMIES: Lord Voldermort/Tom M. Riddle, Barty Crouch Jr., Professor Karkaroff.
PETS: None
POSITION: Bulgarian Quidditch team seeker, Durmstrang student, Tri-Wizard Tournament competitor
QUOTES: "Herm - own - ninny."

 

 


Ginny WeasleyNAME: Virginia "Ginny" Weasley
AGE: 13
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Arthur and Molly Weasley
SIBLINGS: Bill, Charlie, Percy, George & Fred, Ron
FRIENDS: Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Hagrid, Neville Longbottom, Colin Creevey
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, basilisks, Draco Malfoy
PETS: Pigwideon the Minute Owl ("Pig") -- she named him
POSITION: Gryffindor student, avid Harry Potter fan
QUOTES: "I'm going to be expelled! I've looked forward to coming to Hogwarts ever since B - Bill came and n - now I'll have to leave and w - what'll Mum and Dad say?"

 


Seamus Finnigan
NAME: Seamus Finnigan
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Mr. and Mrs. Finnigan (respectively; a Muggle & a witch)
SIBLINGS: N/A
FRIENDS: Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione, Dean Thomas, Parvati Patil, Padma Patil, Lavender Brown, Neville Longbottom
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Draco Malfoy.
PETS: N/A
POSITION: Gryffindor student in Harry's year.
QUOTES: "Me dad's a Muggle, Mom's a witch. Bit of a nasty shock when he found out."


Lee JordanNAME: Lee Jordan
AGE: 16
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Mr. and Mrs. Jordan (we guess)
SIBLINGS: N/A
FRIENDS: The Weasley Twins, Ron Weasley, Harry Potter, the rest of the Gryffindor Quidditch team.
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort, Professor Snape, Professor McGonagall when he's too exuberant during a game
PETS: A spider (in a trunk in Book 1)
POSITION: Gryffindor student in Fred and George's year, Quidditch commentator.
QUOTES: "Sorry, Professer, won't happen again. So, anyway . . ."

 


Pansy Parkinson
NAME: Pansy Parkinson
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: N/A
FRIENDS: Millicent Bulstrode, [likes] Draco Malfoy
ENEMIES: Hermione Granger, Harry Potter.
PETS: N/A
POSITION: Slytherin student in Harry's year
QUOTES: "Ooh, sticking up for Longbottom? Never thought you'd like fat little crybabies, Parvati."

 


Katie BellNAME: Katie Bell
AGE: 16
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: N/A
FRIENDS: Angelina Johnson, Alicia Spinnet, Oliver Wood, Fred & George Weasley, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Lee Jordan.
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, the Slytherin Quidditch team.
PETS: N/A
POSITION: Gryffindor student Fred & George's age, Quidditch team Chaser
QUOTES: N/A

 


Angelina Johnson
NAME: Angelina Johnson
AGE: 17
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: N/A
FRIENDS: Katie Bell, Alicia Spinnet, Oliver Wood, Fred & George Weasley, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Lee Jordan.
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, the Slytherin Quidditch team.
PETS: N/A
POSITION: Gryffindor student, Quidditch team Chaser.
QUOTES: N/A

 


Cho ChangNAME: Cho Chang
AGE: 15
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: Unknown
FRIENDS: Cedric Diggory (deceased)
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle
PETS: Unknown
POSITION: Ravenclaw student, Quidditch team Seeker
QUOTES: "You dropped your quill."

 


Blaise ZabiniNAME: Blaise Zabini
AGE: 14
GENDER: No idea. J. K. Rowling needs to say!
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: N/A
FRIENDS: Draco Malfoy, Pansy Parkinson, Vincent Crabbe, Gregory Goyle, Millicent Bulstrode
ENEMIES: Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, etc. (probably)
PETS: N/A
POSITION: Slytherin student in Harry's year and was mentioned in the first book only, at the sorting ceremony. We don't know if Blaise is female or male; that's why you can't tell what Blaise's gender is by the picture. It's ambiguous, and Meg and I like it that way. ::smirk::
QUOTES: None


Colin Creevey
NAME: Colin Creevey
AGE: 13
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Mr. Creevey (a milkman)
SIBLINGS: Dennis
FRIENDS: Ginny Weasley, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Draco Malfoy, all basilisks
PETS: None
POSITION: Gryffindor student, not misrepresented as a rabid "Potter-fan"
QUOTES: "Harry, Harry!"

 

 


Parvati & Padma Patil
NAME: Parvati & Padma Patil
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: Each other
FRIENDS: Lavender Brown, Professor Trelawney, Harry Potter, Ron Weasley (slightly)
ENEMIES: Hermione Granger, Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle
PETS: None
POSITION: Parvati is a Gryffindor student in Harry's year, Padma is a Ravenclaw student
QUOTES: N/A

 


Hannah Abbott
NAME: Hannah Abbott
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: Unknown
FRIENDS: Susan Bones, Eloise Midgen, Justin Finch-Fletchey, Ernie MacMillan
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle
PETS: N/A
POSITION: Hufflepuff student in Harry's year
QUOTES: N/A

 

 

Gregory Goyle
NAME: Gregory Goyle
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Mr. and Mrs. Goyle
SIBLINGS: N/A
FRIENDS: Draco Malfoy, Vincent Crabbe, Pansy Parkinson, Millicent Bulstrode
ENEMIES: Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger
PETS: Unknown
POSITION: Slytherin student in Harry's year, one of Draco Malfoy's bodyguards
QUOTES: "< insert grunt here >"

 


Lavender BrownNAME: Lavender Brown
AGE: 14
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: Unknown
FRIENDS: Parvati Patil, Padma Patil, Professor Sybill Trelawney, Seamus Finnigan
ENEMIES: Hermione Granger, Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle
PETS: A bunny rabbit (::hops::), now deceased
POSITION: Gryffindor student in Harry's year; divination "prodigy"
QUOTES: N/A




Ever wanted a quick look into the lives of the famous (and infamous) Harry Potter book adult characters? Well, here's your chance! Just scroll down and be happy!

 

Albus DumbledoreNAME: Albus Dumbledore
AGE: 150
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: Aberforth
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Rubeus Hagrid, Minerva McGonagall, Severus Snape, Molly & Arthur Weasley, Poppy Pomfrey, Madam Hooch, Irma Pince, Prof. Flitwick, Prof. Sinistra, Prof. Sprout, Cornelius Fudge, etc.
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Lucius Malfoy, Barty Crouch Jr., Peter Pettigrew
PETS: Fawkes the Phoenix
POSITION: Headmaster of Hogwarts, ex-Transfiguration Professor, Order of Merlin First Class, best wizard in the world, Head Mugwump
QUOTES: "To the well-organized mind, death is but the next great adventure." / "Nitwit! Blubber! Oddment! Tweak!"


Minerva McGonagall
NAME: Minerva McGonagall
AGE: 70
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Unknown
SIBLINGS: N/A
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Professor Dumbledore, Rubeus Hagrid, the rest of the Hogwarts professors.
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Peter Pettigrew
PETS: Herself - she can turn into a cat . . .
POSITION: Hogwarts' Deputy Headmistress, Transfiguration professor, Head of Gryffindor House
QUOTES: "You look in excellent health to me, Potter, so you will excuse me if I don't let you off homework today. I assure you that if you die, you need not hand it in."

 


Severus Snape
NAME: Severus Snape
AGE: Between 35 and 45
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: None
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Albus Dumbledore, Minerva McGonagall
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Professor Quirrell, Peter Pettigrew, Remus J. Lupin, Sirius Black
PETS: None
POSITION: Potions professor, Head of Slytherin House, former Death Eater
QUOTES: "Ah, Potter. Our new . . . celebrity."

 

 


Lucius & Narcissa Malfoy
NAMES: Lucius and Narcissa Malfoy
AGES: 35+
BIRTHDAYS: N/A
PARENTS: M/A
SIBLINGS: N/A
CHILDREN: Draco Malfoy
FRIENDS: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Peter Pettrigrew
ENEMIES: Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter, Severus Snape
PETS: Barn owls, cats, etc.
POSITIONS: Death Eater (Lucius)
QUOTES: "Dear me, what's the use of being a disgrace to the name of wizard if they don't even pay you well for it?" / "Good lord, Arthur. What did you have to sell to get seats in the Top Box [at the Quidditch World Cup]? Surely your house wouldn't have fetched this much?" - both Lucius

 


Bill Weasley
NAME: William "Bill" Weasley
AGE: 27+
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Molly & Arthur Weasley
SIBLINGS: Charlie, Percy, Fred & George, Ron, Ginny
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Hagrid, Gringotts workers
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle
PETS: None
POSITION: Former Gryffindor student, employed with Gringotts Bank
QUOTES: "Do us a favor, Perce, and shut up."

 


Rubeus Hagrid
NAME: Rubeus Hagrid
AGE: 63 (about)
BIRTHDAY:
PARENTS: Father: human, wizard(?), name unknown, deceased; mother (Friedwulfa): giantess, witch, hiding out.
SIBLINGS: None
CHILDREN: Norbert, Aragog, Fang, Buckbeak (children so-to-speak)
FRIENDS: Albus Dumbledore, Minerva McGonagall, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Ginny Weasley, Neville Longbottom, Charlie Weasley, Severus Snape, Rosmerta, Prof. Flitwick, any animal that comes along.
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Peter Pettigrew, Karkaroff, Cornelius Fudge (sometimes)
PETS: Fang (currently), Aragog (as a baby), Norbert the Norweigen Ridgeback (as a baby), Fluffy (for a while), & several Balst-Ended Skrewts.
POSITION: Keeper of the Keys, Care of Magical Creatures teacher, former Azkaban prisoner
QUOTES: "Yer a wizard, 'arry."

 


Percy Weasley
NAME: Percy Weasley
AGE: 18 or 19
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: Arthur & Molly Weasley
SIBLINGS: Bill, Charlie, George, Fred, Ron, & Ginny
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Harry Potter, Penelope (girlfriend from Ravenclaw)
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Rita Skeeter
PETS: Hermes the Owl
POSITION: Assistant to Barty Crouch
QUOTES: "Well, er, if you must know, er Ginny, er, walked in on me the other day when I was - well never mind - the point is, she spoted something and I, um, I asked her not to mention it to anybody. I must say I did think she'd keep her word. It's nothing really, I'd just rather - " (referring to Ginny seeing him kissing a girl)

 


Gilderoy LockhartNAME: Gilderoy Lockhart
AGE: Between 25 & 40
BIRTHDAY: Unknown
PARENTS: Unknown
SIBLINGS: Unknown
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Besides avid fans, no one
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Severus Snape
PETS: Several ornish pixies who love him
POSITION: Famous "dare-devil"-type wizard, former Hogwarts professor of the Dark Arts, current insane assailant
QUOTES: "Sword? Haven't got a sword. That boy has one, though. He'll lend you one." (acting a bit typsy)

 


Young Remus Older Remus
NAME: Remus "Moony" Lupin
AGE: 35+
BIRTHDAY: Unknown
PARENTS: Witch and wizard
SIBLINGS: Unknown
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Sirius Black, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Albus Dumbledore
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Severus Snape, the moon
PETS: Boggarts and that such
POSITION: Werewolf, former DADA professor (Harry's third year)
QUOTES: ". . . and the worse that's happened to you, Harry, is enough to make anyone fall off their broom."

 


Lord Voldemort Thomas Marvolo Riddle
NAME: Thomas Marvolo Riddle
A.K.A.: Lord Voldemort, Voldemort, You-Know-Who, He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, Voldie
AGE: 65-85 (around there)
BIRTHDAY: 1920's
PARENTS: Grandparents: Mr. and Mrs. Marvolo Riddle; father: Tom Riddle, Muggle; mother: witch, great-great-great-etc.-grandson of Salazar Slytherin
SIBLINGS: Unknown
CHILDREN: None (we don't believe)
FRIENDS: Lucius Malfoy, Peter Pettigrew, Barty Crouch Jr., Death Eaters
ENEMIES: Harry Potter, Albus Dumbledore, Severus Snape, Remus Lupin, Sirius Black, etc.
PETS: Nagini the snake, the basilisk, Peter Pettigrew
POSITION: Former Slytherin student, murderer, worst/darkest wizard in the world
QUOTES: "The diary. My diary. Little Ginny's been writing in it for months and months, telling me all her pitiful worries and woes - how her brothers tease her, how she had to come to school with secondhand robes, and books, how - how she didn't think famous, good, great Harry Potter would ever like her . . ."


Lily Potter
NAME: Lily Evans Potter
AGE: Deceased; would be in late 30s to early 40s
BIRTHDAY: Unknown
PARENTS: Mr. and Mrs. Evans
SIBLINGS: Petunia Dursley (married to Vernon Dursley, son is Dudley)
CHILDREN: Harry Potter
FRIENDS: Albus Dumbledore, Remus J. Lupin, Sirius Black, the Weasleys, the Longbottoms, the Bones
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Peter Pettigrew, Karkaroff, all Death Eaters
PETS: Unknown
POSITION: Harry's mother, eyes integral part to storyline, Muggle-born witch
QUOTES: "Not Harry!"


Percy Weasley
NAME: James Potter
AGE: Deceased; would be in late 30s to early 40s
BIRTHDAY: Unknown
PARENTS: Mr. and Mrs. Potter
SIBLINGS: Unknown
CHILDREN: Harry Potter
FRIENDS: Albus Dumbledore, Remus J. Lupin, Sirius Black, the Weasleys, the Longbottoms, the Bones
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Peter Pettigrew, Karkaroff, all Death Eaters
PETS: Unknown
POSITION: Ex-Gryffindor Quidditch Team player, obviously important enough to be killed
QUOTES: "It's him!"


Young Sirius Black
NAME: Sirius Black
AGE: 35+
BIRTHDAY:
PARENTS: Unknown
SIBLINGS: Unknown
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Albus Dumbledore, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Remus J. Lupin, the Potters (deceased), Crookshanks
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Severus Snape (somewhat), Peter Pettigrew, Karkaroff, Cornelius Fudge, Tony Blair (p.m.)
PETS: Buckbeak the Hippogriff
POSITION: Introduced in Book 1, comes into play in Book 3, he is a former Azkaban prisoner, Harry's godfather, and a fugitive on the run.
QUOTES: N/A


Older Peter Pettigrew
NAME: Peter Pettigrew
AGE: 35+
BIRTHDAY: Unknown
PARENTS: Witch and wizard (Voldemort wouldn't hang out with a half or Muggle-born)
SIBLINGS: Unknown
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Lucius Malfoy, other Death Eaters
ENEMIES: Sirius Black, Remus J. Lupin, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Albus Dumbledore, Severus Snape, Crookshanks
PETS: He's Voldemort's pet!
POSITION: Jerk who betrayed the Potters and got Sirius put in jail
QUOTES: N/A


Oliver Wood
NAME: Oliver Wood
AGE: 18
BIRTHDAY: Unknown
PARENTS: Mr. and Mrs. Wood
SIBLINGS: Unknown
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Harry Potter & the rest of the Gryffindor Quidditch Team
ENEMIES: Marcus Flint, Draco Malfoy, Lord Voldemort
PETS: Unknown
POSITION: Former Hogwarts student & Gryffindor Quidditch team captain/Keeper
QUOTES: "Bad news, Harry. I've just been to see Professor McGonagall about the Firebolt. She--er--got a bit shirty with me. Told me I'd got my priorities wrong. Seemed to think I cared more about winning the Cup than I do about you staying alive. Just because I told her I didn't care if [the broom] threw you off, as long as you caught the Snitch first. Honestly, the way she was yelling at me . . . you'd think I'd said something terrible."


Arthur Weasley
NAME: Arthur Weasley
AGE: 40+
BIRTHDAY: Unknown
PARENTS: Witch & wizard
SIBLINGS: N/A
CHILDREN: Bill, Charlie, Percy, Fred & George, Ron, Ginny
FRIENDS: Albus Dumbledore, Hagrid, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Peter Pettigrew, Lucius Malfoy all Death Eaters
PETS: [all together] Hermes the Owl, Pig the Minute-Owl, Scabbers (previously), a ghost, and several gnomes
POSITION: Head of Muggle Deparment in the Ministry of Magic
QUOTES: "Molly . . ."


Molly Weasley
NAME: Molly Weasley
AGE: 40+
BIRTHDAY: Unknown
PARENTS: Witch & wizard
SIBLINGS: N/A
CHILDREN: Bill, Charlie, Percy, Fred & George, Ron, Ginny
FRIENDS: Albus Dumbledore, Hagrid, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Peter Pettigrew, Lucius Malfoy
PETS: [all together] Hermes the Owl, Pig the Minute-Owl, Scabbers (previously), a ghost, and several gnomes
POSITION: Housewife, matriarch of the Burrow
QUOTES: N/A


Argus Filch
NAME: Argus Filch
AGE: 50+
BIRTHDAY: N/A
PARENTS: N/A
SIBLINGS: N/A
CHILDREN: None
FRIENDS: Albus Dumbledore (presumably)
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Hagrid, all Hogwarts students
PETS: Mrs. Norris
POSITION: Hogwarts caretaker, resident Squib
QUOTES: "My sweet . . ."



 

 

Crookshanks

NAME: Crookshanks
AGE: At least 2 or more
PARENT: Hermione Granger
FRIENDS: Sirius Black (Padfoot)
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Scabbers (Peter Pettigrew), Ron Weasley
POSITION: A very suspicious ginger-coloured cat (who many suspect is a person)
QUOTES: "Merrow!"

 

 

 


scabbersNAME: Scabbers
AGE: Approximately 13 years (as a rat)
PARENT: Ron Weasley (previously Percy Weasley)
FRIENDS: Lord Voldemort, really none
ENEMIES: Crookshanks, Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, Harry Potter
POSITION: A very lazy gray rat (who couldn't be turned yellow) who bit Goyle and turns out to be a highly suspicious little vermin.
QUOTES: "Squeek!"

 


Mrs. Norris
NAME: Mrs. Norris
AGE: At least ten or more
PARENT: Argus Filch
FRIENDS: Crookshanks (maybe?)
ENEMIES: All students of Hogwarts, Hagrid
POSITION: Counterpart to Hogwarts caretaker Argus Filch
QUOTES: "Meow!"

 

 

 


The Sorting Hat
NAME: The Sorting Hat
AGE: Cannot be determined (very old)
PARENTS: The Founders of Hogwarts
FRIENDS: Abraham Lincoln's top hat, the Queen's crown of the Crown Jewels
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, moths
POSITION: The hat placed upon the head of each new first year Hogwarts student which determines (by looking through their minds) what house each is to belong
QUOTES: N/A
NOTES: Yes, in this case, I am considering the hat an "animal."

 

 


James Potter
NAME: James "Prongs" Potter
AGE: 35+ (deceased)
PARENTS: Witch and wizard
FRIENDS: Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, Albus Dumbledore, Lily Potter
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Severus Snape, Peter Pettigrew
POSITION: Harry Potter's father; important wizard; killed by Voldemort on Halloween, 1981
QUOTES: N/A


Sirius Black
NAME: Sirius "Padfoot" Black
AGE: 35+
PARENTS: Witch and wizard (most likely)
FRIENDS: Remus Lupin, James Potter, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Albus Dumbledore, Arabella Figg, Mundungus Fletcher, Mr. and Mrs. Weasley
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Severus Snape, Peter Pettigrew
PETS: Buckbeak the Hippogriff
POSITION: Escaped convict of Azkaban, as accused murderer
QUOTES: "There'll be only one murder here tonight . . ." / "Going to kill me, Harry?" / "Believe me. Believe me, Harry. I never betrayed James and Lily. I would died before I betrayed them."


Remus Lupin
NAME: Remus "Moony" Lupin
AGE: 35+
PARENTS: Witch and wizard
FRIENDS: Sirius Black, James Potter, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Albus Dumbledore, Arabella Figg, Mundungus Fletcher
ENEMIES: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, Severus Snape, Peter Pettigrew, the moon, himself
POSITION: Werewolf, former DADA professor (Harry's third year)
QUOTES: ". . . and the worse that's happened to you, Harry, is enough to make anyone fall off their broom."


Peter Pettigrew
NAME: Peter "Wormtail" Pettigrew
AGE: 35+
PARENTS: Witch and wizard (he's a pureblood)
FRIENDS: Lord Voldemort/Tom Marvolo Riddle, other Death Eaters (sort of)
ENEMIES: Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Albus Dumbledore, Crookshanks
POSITION: Traitor to the Marauders, Death Eater
QUOTES: "S - Sirius . . . R - Remus . . . My friends . . . my old friends . . ."


Dumbledore- In Latin, "Dumblemore" means bumblebee. J. K. Rowling said once that she thought Albus "seemed like a bumblebee."

Minerva- the Roman goddess of wisdom, equivalant to the Greek goddess Athena.

Voldemort- In French, "Vol de mort" means "Flight of death." Vol is also thief.

Hermione- Hermione, in Greek mythology, daughter of Helen of Troy and Menelaus, king of Sparta. Although she was betrothed to Orestes, king of Mycenae, after the Trojan War, Hermione married Neoptolemus, the son of the Greek hero Achilles. Orestes later killed Neoptolemus and became Hermione's second husband.

Remus- Remus was one of twins (brother was Romulus) who were raised by a mother wolf and later founded Rome. The reason the famous city, it is said, is named Rome (instead of something else) is because Romulus killed his twin in a fit of jealousy.

Lupin- This has its root in the French "lupus" and the Latin "lupinus". "Lupine," in English, means wolfish.

Fleur Delacour- In French, "Fleur" is flower and "de la cour" is "of the court." All together, Fleur's name means "Flower of the Court."

Severus [Snape]- Lucius Septimus Severus was a Roman emperor. The root word in "Severus," also, is "severe."

Draco- Latin for Dragon. "Draco" is also the dragon constellation. Draco is rapped around Ursa Minor or the Little Dipper, the tail starts between the pointer stars in the Big Dipper (Ursa Major) and the North Star. The North Pole "follows" a circle which is approximatly the same as Draco over a period of 26,000 years; that is, you can't get much more north than that! It is visible all year long in the northern hemisphere. Watch for it!
(The Solomons from "Third Rock From the Sun" come from a Barred Spirial Galaxy on the Draco - Cephius border.)

Malfoy- In French, "mal" means bad and "foi" means faith. Could you say that Draco Malfoy is a "Dragon of Bad Faith"? Perhaps . . .
< >The Scottish word "foy" (with a different pronunciation) means "farewell feast" or "gift". Using the latter, Draco's surname may be a description or even an oxymoron: a "bad gift."

Sirius- the Dog Star and also the brightest star in our sky. The Dog Star (which may be why Mr. Black's Animagus is a dog), or Canis Majoris, one of the bigger stars in the universe - and the majority of it (and the dog constellation it is part of) can be seen between February 1 and March 1.
< >However, as a helpful planetarium instructor has told me, Sirius is a large star, "but there are many (Red Giants in particular) which are much larger."

Ludo- In French, "Ludo" is a prefix that means game. For example, une ludothèque means a place to buy games.

Bagman- In British slang, this is a traveling salesmen. "Bagman" is also associated with who illicitly collects (or distributes) money on behalf of another.

Narcissa [Malfoy]- A narcissi flower comes from the Greek myth of Echo & Narcissus. Echo could only repeat what was spoken to her and fell in love with Narcissus one day. He repelled her & later found a pond where he saw his reflection for the first time. Narcissus fell in love with himself & became the narcissi. "Narcissus" is also synonymous with vanity & self-absorption.

Argus- In Greek and Roman mythology, Argus is a monster of many eyes. Argus Filch obviously gets his name from this, for he is always watching.

Filch- "Filch" is another word for stealing; predominently used in Britain.

Sibyl [Trelawney]- Means fortune teller or female phropet. Sibyl was also any of several prophetesses usually accepted as 10 in number and credited to widely separate parts of the ancient world (as Babylonia, Egypt, Greece, and Italy).

[Madame] Malkin- A malkin is an untidy woman. It's also associated with cats and hares (is Madame Malkin an Animagi?).

Penelope- the wife of Odysseus who waits faithfully for him during his 20 years of absence. (Will Percy marry Penelope Clearwater, then unexpectedly disappear?)

Lament for the noble basilisk . . .

 

  legends and mythologies... be.

Basilisk-
A basilisk is a legendary reptile with fatal breath and glance. Unlike the basilisk in Harry Potter - a snake -, the real "legend" - rather, history - of the basilisk is this:
The name "Basilisk" is a common name for the lizards of the genus Basiliscus in the Iguana family, of which four species are found in tropical America and Mexico to Ecuador. The name is derived from a mythological monster, the basilisk, whose breath and glance were fatal, as we have already said, Funk and Wagnalls. ::sigh:: The basilisks are from about two to three feet long when fully grown, most of the length being in the slender, whiplike tail. Their back legs are developed far out of proportion to the rest of their bodies, so that when at rest the basilisks squat like frogs. When moving, their either hop on the hind legs or run on all fours. They are lively animals, arboreal - living in trees - and omnivorous, and are "harmless" to humans.

Phoenix-
The phoenix is a legendary bird that lived in Arabia. According to tradition (and legend), the phoenix consumed itself by fire every five hundred years - I would like to note that Fawkes is obviously not like this - and a new, young phoenix would spring from its ashes.
In the religion of ancient Egypt, the phoenix represented the sun, which dies at night and is reborn in the morning. Early Christian tradition adopted the phoenix as a symbol of immortality and resurrection.
Phoenix is also a quadrant or area (help, NASA!) in the universe, positioned for earthlings to see in the late fall and early winter.

Cerberus-
What Fluffy the three-headed dog from Book 1 is based on. In Greek mythology, the path to the Underworld (both a heaven and hell, whereas the Elysian Fields are a sort of Limbo) was a strange one. With a silver coin, one [dead person] went to the shore of the River Styx to meet the avaricious old ferryman Charon. He would take the coin from the crossing-over person and take the soul across the river in his boat. The deceased would have to pass by Cerberus and several other obstacles as tests, and then they could move on to Hades' world.
Cerberus is said to also have had a mane and tail made of snakes, though this is disputed. It was the child of Typhon and Echnda. One of Hercules' twelve labors was to capture Cerberus while it guarded the entrance of the Underworld.

Voldemort-
Voldemort is derived from the little well known evil wizard named Voldermortist, in another language, Voldermortist means "Lord of Evil" or in the simple form of Voldemort means "Dark Lord". The legend is that Voldermortist once tried to destroy Merlin before the time of King Arthur, by bewitching good people, and simply bribing those who already were evil.
Legend has it that Merlin destroyed Voldermortist by using a simple paralyzing charm (full body bind in the case of Harry Potter), fed him to the many headed beast (translated as Fluffy, in the book) of the lake, the Lady of the Lake's pet, freed the bewitched people, and destroyed the evil men. That was maybe twelve, thirteen years before Arthur.

Rubeus Hagrid-
One of the early Greek gods was the giant of jewels, or in Greek, Hagrid Rubeus, with Hagrid meaning giant and Ruebus meaning rubul, or jewel. This god was said to be the kindest of the gods, but Hades framed him for the death of Perseus's - the killer of Medusa - son. He was therfore banned from Olympus, but Zues took pity on the poor giant and gave him a job as the keeper of any godly beasts on Olympus.

Ronald Weasley-
Ron Weasley, in another language, is called "Running Weasel." Running Weasel was a warlord in the 6th Dynasty. He was a brilliant statigist, and he never lost a game of chess.
Unfortunately, he died when a rat that had been dyed yellow by his soldiers for fun earlier that day, knocked over a lamp in his palace, burning it to the ground, and killing Running Weasel. -- Told to us August of 1999.

 


__

 

Harry Potter
and the Sorcerer's Stone

Title: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (a.k.a. Philosopher's Stone)
Author: J. K. Rowling
Book/Year: One
Release Date: Late 1997 (UK), late 1998 (USA)
Rating: ****1/2
Publishers: Bloomsbury, UK; Scholastic, USA

___

 

Harry Potter
and the Chamber of Secrets

Title: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Author: J. K. Rowling
Book/Year: Two
Release Date: Late 1998 (UK), early 1999 (USA)
Rating: *****
Publishers: Bloomsbury, UK; Scholastic, USA


____

 

Harry Potter
and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Title: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Author: J. K. Rowling
Book/Year: Three
Release Date: Mid 1999 (UK); September 8, 1999 (USA)
Rating: ****
Publishers: Bloomsbury, UK; Scholastic, USA


____

 

Harry Potter
and the Goblet of FIre

Title: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Author: J. K. Rowling
Book/Year: Four
Release Date: July 8, 2000 (UK & USA)
Rating: *****
Publishers: Bloomsbury, UK; Scholastic, USA

 

 


J.K. Rowling

Joanne Kathleen Rowling was born on July 31, 1965, in Chipping Sodbury, near Bristol, England. A single mother living in Edinburgh, Scotland, Rowling became an international literary sensation in 1999, when the first three installments of her Harry Potter children's book series took over the top three slots of the New York Times best-seller list after achieving similar success in her native United Kingdom. The phenomenal response to Rowling's books culminated in July 2000, when the fourth volume in the series, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, became the fastest-selling book in history.

A graduate of Exeter University, Rowling moved to Portugal in 1990 to teach English. There, she met and married a Portuguese journalist. The couple's daughter, Jessica, was born in 1993. After her marriage ended in divorce, Rowling moved to Edinburgh with her daughter to live near her younger sister, Di. While struggling to support Jessica and herself on welfare, Rowling worked on a book, the idea for which had reportedly occurred to her while she was traveling on a train from Manchester to London in 1990. After a number of rejections, she finally sold the book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (the word "Philosopher" was changed to "Sorcerer" for its publication in America), for the equivalent of about $4,000.

By the summer of 2000, the first three Harry Potter books: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, and Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban earned approximately $480 million in three years, with over 35 million copies in print in 35 languages. In July 2000, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire saw a first printing of 5.3 million copies and advance orders of over 1.8 million. Rowling, now one of Britain's richest women, plans a total of seven books in the series, each chronicling a year in the life of Harry Potter, a young wizard, and his motley band of cohorts at the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.  

Quidditch

 

 

 

Rules of Quidditch



Balls: There are three kinds in all. Four are used in the game.

Quaffle: Large and red, about the size of a Soccer ball, used to score goals. (Worth Ten Points)

Bludger: Two in a game, black. Slightly smaller than a Quaffle, fly around trying to knock players off brooms.

Snitch: Most important Ball in the game. Tiny, the size of a golf ball with wings, very fast and hard to catch.


Players:
Seven play at one time for each team.

Chaser: Throw the Quaffle to each other trying to score goals. Three on each team.

Keeper: Kind of like a Soccer goalie. Guards the goal posts. Only one plays at a time.

Beater: Uses a baseball bat type think to knock the bludgers at the other team. Two play.

Seeker: Flys around trying to catch the golden Snitch. One plays at a time.


-
No Time limit.

- Each goal scored by Chasers is 10 points.

- Penalty shots are given when you get fouled.

- Catching the Snitch is 150 points.

- The game is over when the Snitch is caught.


 

 

Hogwarts Teams

Gryffindor (Scarlet)

Captain: Oliver Wood
Seeker: Harry Potter
Keeper: Oliver Wood
Beater: Fred Weasley
Beater: George Weasley
Chaser: Angelina Johnson
Chaser: Alicia Spinnet
Chaser: Katie Bell

Ravenclaw (Blue)Ravenclaw
Captain: Roger Davies
Seeker: Cho Chang

Hufflepuff (Yellow)

Captain: Cedric Diggory
Seeker: Cedric Diggory

Slytherin (Green)

Captain: Marcus Flint
Seeker: Draco Malfoy (Formerly Terence Higgs)
Keeper: Bletchly
Beater: Bole
Beater: Derrick
Chaser: Marcus Flint
Chaser: Warrington
Chaser: Montague

Quidditch Moves and Tricks



Here is a list of popular quidditch moves and tricks. Information credit Kennilworthy Whisp and "Quidditch Through the Ages".



Beater Moves


Bludger Backbeat
A move by which the Beater strikes the bludge a backhanded club swing, sending it behind him or her, rather than in front. Difficult to bring off with precision but excellent for confusing opponents.

Dobblebeater Defence
Both Beaters hit a bludger at the same time for extra power, resulting in a Bludger attack of greater severity.



Keeper Moves


Double Eight Loop
A Keeper defence, usually employed against penalty takers, whereby the Keeper swerves around all three goal hoops at high speed to block the Quaffle.

Starfish and Stick
The Keeper holds the broom horizontally with one hand and one foot curled around the handle, while keeping all linbs outstretched.



Chaser Moves

Hawkshead Attacking Formation
Chasers form an arrowhead pattern and fly together towards the gaol posts. Highly intimidating to opposing teams and effective in forcing the other players aside.

Woollongong Shimmy
Perfected by the Australian Woollongong Warriors, this is a high-speed zigzagging movement intended to off opposing Chasers.

Reverse Pass
A Chaser throws the Quaffle over one shoulder to a team member. Accuracy is difficult.

Parkin's Pincer
So named for the original members of the Wigtown Wanderers, who are reputed to have invented this move. Two Chasers, close in on an opposing Chaser and either side, while the third flies headlong towards him or her.

Porskoff Ploy
The Chaser carries the Quaffle upwards, leading opposing Chasers to belive that he or she is trying to escape them to score, but then throws the Quaffle downwards to a fellow Chaser waiting to catch it. Named after the Russian Chaser Petrova Porskoff.



Seeker Moves


Wronski Feint
The Seeker hurtles towards the ground pretending to have seen the Snitch far below, but pulls out of the dive just before hitting the pitch. Intended to make the opposing Seeker copy him and crash. Named after the Polish Seeker Josef Wronski.

Plumpton Pass
A seemingly careless swerve that scoops the Snitch up one's sleeve. Named after Roderick Plumpton, Tutshill Tornado Seeker, who employed the move in his record breaking Snitch catch of 1921. Although many critics have alleged that this was an accident, Plumpton mantained unitl his death that he had meant to do it.



Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry

The Hogwarts School Song

Hogwarts, Hogwarts, Hoggy Warty Hogwarts,

Teach us something please,

Whether we be old and bald,

Or young with scabby knees,

Our heads could do with filling,

With some interesting stuff,

For now they're bare and full of air,

Dead flies and bits of fluff,

So teach us things worth knowing,

Bring back what we've forgot,

Just do your best, we'll do the rest,

And learn until our brains all rot.

First Year Students will require:

1. Three sets of plain work robes

2.  One plain pointed hat for day

3.  One pair of dragon hide gloves

 

 

February 22. 2003

LOS ANGELES, California (AP) -- "Harry Potter" has a new schoolmaster: Michael Gambon.

The Irish-born actor is replacing Richard Harris, who died last year, as Albus Dumbledore in the third installment of the "Harry Potter" series, Warner Bros. announced Friday. AOL Time Warner is the parent company of Warner Bros. and CNN.

"Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" is filming in England, and Gambon's casting had been a closely guarded secret. Others mentioned as possible candidates for the role included Christopher Lee, Ian McKellen and Peter O'Toole, who had a longtime friendship with Harris.

Gambon, 62, is best known for his roles as the wealthy murder victim in 2001's "Gosford Park" and the sinister landowner in 1999's "Sleepy Hollow." He also starred as President Lyndon Johnson in the 2002 TV movie "Path to War."

Harris, who died in October at 72, was best known for playing combative, iconoclastic characters in films such as "This Sporting Life," "Unforgiven" and "A Man Called Horse." 

He took the role of the gentle, professorial old wizard in the "Harry Potter" films because a young granddaughter was a fan of the books.

Although Harris, who was born in Ireland, had signed to appear in the third film, his health began to fail shortly after he completed work on the second movie in the series, "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets."

Warner Bros. also announced that Gary Oldman would play the "Prisoner" of the title, a mysterious character named Sirius Black who escapes from the magical prison of Azkaban and seems to be stalking Potter and his friends.

Worldwide sales of J.K. Rowling's first four "Harry Potter" books top 190 million copies, and the upcoming fifth installment, "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix," is set to hit bookstores June 21 with a first printing of 6.8 million.

The film version of "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" collected $317.5 million at the domestic box office, while last fall's "Chamber of Secrets" has earned about $260.5 million.

'Potter' Author Appearing on 'Simpsons'

.c The Associated Press 

LOS ANGELES (AP) - J.K. Rowling, author of the ``Harry Potter'' series of books, will make an animated guest appearance on ``The Simpsons.''

Rowling has lent her voice to the animated comedy show for an episode set for broadcast next season, the Fox network said Wednesday.

Another guest in the episode will be Ian McKellen (``The Lord of the Rings'' films), who also plays himself, publicist Antonia Coffman said.

The Simpson family crosses paths with Rowling and McKellen when they travel to London.

Rowling fumes sarcastically when young Lisa Simpson pesters her for details about how the ``Harry Potter'' series will end. McKellen is besieged by falling anvils and other disasters when Homer Simpson repeatedly says the name of Shakespeare's ``Macbeth'' aloud at the theater, which performers regard as bad luck.

Coffman said the episode is likely to air in November or December.

Worldwide sales of Rowling's first four ``Harry Potter'' books top 190 million copies, and the upcoming fifth installment, ``Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix,'' is set to hit bookstores June 21.

The third installment in the film series, ``Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban,'' is scheduled for release next year.

 

 


©Copyright Typowriters Design 2003/2004
©