For the past several months, I’ve been rereading the Harry Potter series. I’ve read all seven of the books many, many times now, but did things a bit differently this time around. As I would finish each book, I’d watch the corresponding movie. Naturally, this led me to compare each book to each movie, and the books always came out on top. This got me to wondering how JK Rowling would feel about the changes that were made during each book-to-movie translation.
I didn’t have to wait long to find out. I finished reading the last installment, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, last week. Over the weekend, due to an unusual set of circumstances that left me alone in my normally boy-filled home for almost 48 hours, I was able to watch both Deathly Hallows movies (1 & 2). Part of the bonus material for the final Harry Potter movie was a conversation between Daniel Radcliffe and JK Rowling. One of the questions that Dan asked Jo had to do with her feelings about the changes/additions/deletions to her work that occur when her books are turned into movies. She gave a lovely answer, basically saying that she understands that not everything in each book could be in the movie, or each movie would be at least six hours long. She also realizes that some things work better in a book, while other things work better on film. The one type of situation where she really doesn’t care for the change is when it has no logic behind it. All of the magic in her books has a logical basis, and to lose this in the film version would be understandably frustrating.
In this conversation with Daniel Radcliffe, Joanne Rowling’s grace, humor, intelligence, and loyalty to her fans is very apparent. She is a remarkable person, a talented writer, and an inspiration.