Books & Literature

Book Review: Harry Potter – Friends & Foes: A Movie Scrapbook, by Warner Bros

CHILDREN’S BOOK: This fascinating, interactive film scrapbook invites you to explore the deep friendships and dark feuds seen in the Harry Potter movies.

A terrific addition to your Harry Potter collection.

Feature image credit: Bloomsbury

For all the Harry Potter fans out there, and there are millions of them, this hardcover scrapbook will really appeal. Produced by Warner Brothers and Wizarding World, the sketches, behind-the-scenes photos, and production secrets combined with features such as stickers, posters, and artwork will sustain continuing interest in the boy wizard long after the last book in the series was published. Plus, there will always be a new audience coming to an age to enjoy these fantastic books and movies.

The book is divided into chapters each featuring details of one of Harry’s friends or foes, including the teachers. There are comments from many of the actors on the problems which arise when making a film. Emma Watson (Hermione Granger), then aged 12, was not thrilled to have to hug Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter), then aged 13, in front of everyone in a scene from The Chamber of Secrets. We learn that because the hug was so brief, the director, Chris Columbus, used freeze frame technology to make it appear to last longer.

I especially enjoyed the comments regarding the scene from The Goblet of Fire when Dame Maggie Smith (Professor McGonagall) was demonstrating the waltz with Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley), in preparation for the Yule Ball. While Grint described dancing with the great actor as “a memorable moment,” Smith described it as “strenuous … I’ve got two left feet, too, so we both looked pretty silly!”

The book is laid out just as you might make your own scrapbook with snapshots, sketches and commentary framed in a variety of ways. Some comments are reproduced to look as if they are on coloured deckle-edged paper and some pages look as if they have torn edges. Photos are framed with traditional old corner mounts, with others looking just like postcards which can carefully be peeled off the page.

I do wonder why similarly removable little booklets on topics such as the Ministry of Magic or artwork showing the development of Dobby the house elf are included. Given this is a book aimed at children, my first thought was these booklets would be damaged and/or mislaid as soon as they had been taken out of the book.

But this is a minor criticism. For a Harry Potter fan, this book provides extra detail on the films and their production, and behind-the-scenes glimpses of how characters develop. The reader can also enjoy insights from the actors and director on making the films and how they interacted with each other.

Reviewed by Jan Kershaw

The views expressed in this review belong to the author and not Glam Adelaide, its affiliates, or employees.

Distributed by: Bloomsbury
Released: May 2022
RRP: $29.99

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