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Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?



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  #21  
Old March 26th, 2008, 6:16 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

Yes, I think they should have waited. I think they could have done a better job had they known what was going to be important later. We have enough to cover in each movie without having to correct mistakes and include things that were left out of previous movies. It would also mean that we would have new Harry Potter things for even longer - another 10 (give or take) years of movies to be excited for. I do think there are some advantages to them not waiting, though. I think the movies helped the fandom grow; a lot of people only began reading the series after watching the movies. Also, by the time the movie series finished, it would probably be almost 20 years after the SS book came out. That means if someone started reading the series when they were 10, they would have to wait until they were almost 30 to see the final movie. That seems like a really long time to wait, and some people probably wouldn't be into the series anymore by then (I know that a lot of people will always be into the series - I'm just saying that some may not be).


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Old March 26th, 2008, 6:26 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

I think it would have been wonderful had they waited until the end of the series to make the movies. I think that many fans would be much more satisfied with the films. Also the filmakers would have an easier job staying true to the book and including the important details of the plot, and introducing important subplots.

However, due to the movies being filmed almost concurrently with the series being written, the fandom has definitely increased. Many people were first introduced to the HP world through the film versions, and only picked up the books due to the films.

I do however, think that remakes of the films will eventually be made, which will hopefully satisfy the needs of those who wish the filmakers would have waited.


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  #23  
Old March 26th, 2008, 6:41 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

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Originally Posted by _Lynz_ View Post
I've been thinking about this recently. Ignoring the present cast and everything, and thinking hypothetically only, would it have been better to have made the movies after all the books were written?
I think there have been some problems with choosing to make the films before the actual story ended, for example leaving out sub-plots that seemed non-essential at the time but have become vital towards the end of the series.
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Originally Posted by Up2NoGood View Post
I disagree. Jo has worked alongside the filmmakers all this time and has had the final say as to what is and isn't in a movie. Subplots that WE feel were important, weren't necessarily important to Jo. Remember that movie versions of books will never capture the depth of characters and subplots.

I agree with both of you. Some things are missed out that maybe some people would have liked to have been kept in the movies. When you read the books you can choose what things are like in your own imagination but when you watch the film everything is how everybody else sees it if that makes sense?

I'm sure in years to coem there could be a remake of the Harry Potter films anyway.


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  #24  
Old March 26th, 2008, 9:13 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

While watching the movies was what egged me on to read the books, I think I probably would have read them eventually anyway since I like fantasy and sci-fi. Its increasing popularity as a book would have drawn me in out of curiousity.

I have thought of this as well since I started reading the books AFTER PoA-the movie came out. It was seeing PoA that finally got me to read them because I was thrown by the story - I thought Sirius was going to be evil and he turned out to be his dad's best friend, etc. I thought it was a great twist.

Then I read the book and was like - I don't remember that in the movie - and reading the book again - this wasn't in and that wasn't in, etc.

Although I think the movies will turn out alright in the end even with some of the plot points missing, I feel that after the 7th book came out, that the last three movies will not have the same emotional impact because of the things they cut without knowing they would be important later.

But I guess, now that I'm sitting here try to rack my brain and find examples, perhaps JKR's involvement helped them shore up the stories without really cutting anything that would be important to its final resolution. I mean, not having the Fidelius Charm in PoA doesn't really change the final outcome of the story, does it? Not having the locket at GP in OoTP doesn't necessarily change it either. Either they will have found the real one at the end of HBP or they will have the fake one and go back to GP and Kreacher will give them the real one (if they cut the Ministry scene out).

In other words, I don't think they have really painted themselves into a corner per se. The just need to follow what they've already done in the previous movies to keep the flow going.

So, while I probably would have preferred to have all 7 books done first and THEN the movies, I don't think it really matters either way, except to die hard fans like ourselves who are into the details.


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Old March 26th, 2008, 9:19 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

No way! No way! This way, we could read the series and wonder what will happen in the movies.


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  #26  
Old March 26th, 2008, 9:25 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

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Originally Posted by _LoonyLovegood_ View Post
Yes, I think they should have waited. I think they could have done a better job had they known what was going to be important later. We have enough to cover in each movie without having to correct mistakes and include things that were left out of previous movies.
Yes this is exactly what I think. I do like the movies, but I feel like they could have been made so much better if they were made after all the books were written.


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  #27  
Old March 26th, 2008, 11:02 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

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.... I think the movies helped the fandom grow; a lot of people only began reading the series after watching the movies. Also, by the time the movie series finished, it would probably be almost 20 years after the SS book came out. That means if someone started reading the series when they were 10, they would have to wait until they were almost 30 to see the final movie. That seems like a really long time to wait, and some people probably wouldn't be into the series anymore by then (I know that a lot of people will always be into the series - I'm just saying that some may not be).

Well, as always LotR offers some sort of a comparison. Not counting the awful animated films, there were almost 50 years between the publication of the books and the films. I guess one can only really speak of a proper Tolkien fandom in the modern sense since the generation of 1968 discovered the books. Some had been re-reading the books regularly, some hadn't. More people somehow found the books without films....

But the films did rally the fandom, and many people who hadn't been part of the first boom picked up the books. In a way, the LotR fandom lived through a second big wave - almost as if the books had been new a second time round.

In a way, harry Potter was already SUCH a huge phenomenon, even without the films - it would have been fun to have a second wave, again spanning at least a decade, after the series was finished. By this point two whole generations would have been hooked .... You know, the kids of some of those people excited about the books the first time round might just have caught the hype of the last films and felt the excitement for themselves. In a way it is a pity that this didn't happen.

It'll be perfectly fine as it is, but the excitement could have lasted so much longer, and that would have been great, too!


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  #28  
Old March 29th, 2008, 2:18 am
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

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Originally Posted by Klio View Post
Well, as always LotR offers some sort of a comparison. Not counting the awful animated films, there were almost 50 years between the publication of the books and the films. I guess one can only really speak of a proper Tolkien fandom in the modern sense since the generation of 1968 discovered the books. Some had been re-reading the books regularly, some hadn't. More people somehow found the books without films....
The only reason no lotr films were made before the 2001 release of the fellowship of the ring is because no director even considered trying to translate such an epic series to film. The images and locations in the books could have no way been done in the early 70's, at least with any success that is. Technology has come along way with the CGI that has allowed Peter Jackson to bring middle earth to life. For anyone to attmept to make them, and not make them to their fullest potential which I believe Jackson did in fact do, would have simply been disrespectful to Tolkien.

As for waiting to make the Harry Potter films...well thats kind of rediculous. Sure that would give the filmmakers a better understanding of characters and their changes throughout the series and all that, but no big film company would wait to make a movie with such potential profit that the potter films yield. They would risk bypassing the height of potter madness by waiting to release the films after all the books have been released, because lets face it pottermania will lose steam eventually. So, it was simply in their best interest to make the films as soon as possible because the hype was high and they knew no matter how bad (hmm...hmmm...SS and CoS) they were people would come out to see them.


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  #29  
Old March 29th, 2008, 3:30 am
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

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I think there have been some problems with choosing to make the films before the actual story ended, for example leaving out sub-plots that seemed non-essential at the time but have become vital towards the end of the series.
When I read the title of the post I thought something along those lines as well. However, I kind of feel that the opposite is more important. I feel that it makes the movies better if the team working to make them only has as much information as the fans, and is of course provided with some extra emphasis from JKR. I can totally understand where you're coming from with that and I think that would be a great idea if the movies were made into one epic movie spanning the length of all the books, but I think it's better how they did it.

On the other hand, I don't think there would be too many glaring issues if they had waited to make all the movies at once. I mean, it's not like the actors would age improperly, however they would've obviously had to have different ones, but they would've aged all around the same time as portrayed in the movies.

The only real glaring issue I see is I don't think there would be as much anticipation for the movies though if the books were already done. By spacing the books and movies the way they have, there's still interest in the movies because they haven't been made too long before the movie has come out. However, if you were to wait until after the last book to come out with the first movie, I don't think people would be excited, they might feel like they read about this ages ago. Though, I'm sure more people would want to see the first movie because it would be the first HP movie, but after a while I think people would find the movies more redundant.


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Old March 31st, 2008, 7:55 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

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The only real glaring issue I see is I don't think there would be as much anticipation for the movies though if the books were already done. By spacing the books and movies the way they have, there's still interest in the movies because they haven't been made too long before the movie has come out. However, if you were to wait until after the last book to come out with the first movie, I don't think people would be excited, they might feel like they read about this ages ago. Though, I'm sure more people would want to see the first movie because it would be the first HP movie, but after a while I think people would find the movies more redundant.
This isn't an issue at all, IMHO, if the films are good enough. See LotR, and (if you will) Star Wars, where there weren't even any books!


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Old March 31st, 2008, 8:00 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

I definitely don't think they should've. Look at how much the fan community has dwindled after the release of DH and the end of the books. A lot of people are starting (or already have) lost interest in HP. If they started the movies now, they wouldn't be nearly as successful as when they were when they started in 2001. Part of the reason they were so successful in the first place was because it was in the middle of the books, when HP mania was at its max. That got a lot of non-readers interested and decided that they wanted to see the movie. so no, I don't think it would've been better to wait for all the books to be released.


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  #32  
Old April 2nd, 2008, 12:51 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

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The only reason no lotr films were made before the 2001 release of the fellowship of the ring is because no director even considered trying to translate such an epic series to film. The images and locations in the books could have no way been done in the early 70's, at least with any success that is. Technology has come along way with the CGI that has allowed Peter Jackson to bring middle earth to life. For anyone to attmept to make them, and not make them to their fullest potential which I believe Jackson did in fact do, would have simply been disrespectful to Tolkien.
Trust me, there are Tolkien fans who actually find Jackson's films disrespectful to Tolkien.

I am not one of them. Jackson did a great job with a very, very difficult book!

I totally agree with you about the cinematic technology of LotR, by the way.

I am pretty contented with the HP films, I have to say. I have always enjoyed them enormously: and I didn't really become a complete Potterhead until I saw the OotP movie and read DH last summer.

I'm certainly not a HP purist.

It is certainly very interesting to speculate on how the films might have been developed if they'd waited a bit longer to make them though!


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Old April 3rd, 2008, 12:48 am
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

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The only reason no lotr films were made before the 2001 release of the fellowship of the ring is because no director even considered trying to translate such an epic series to film.
Actually, it was tried! Ralph Bakshi presented the first half using early computer effects that merged live-action with cartoons. The film sticks much closer to the books in the scenes that it includes than does the Jackson & Co. version, and there are some Tolkien fans who claim that it is the better version because of this. (The critics disagreed quite vehemently, and there never was very much public interest: which is probably why you were unaware of it!)

Bakshi's was actually the third attempt at a Rings film. The Beatles (yes, those Beatles ) actually tried to fund a Rings project in the late 1960's, but they never really got past the planning stages. The Beatles liked their projects started and completed in a couple of months: and that was just not quite the right mentality for this sort of thing!

The first attempt was made in the 1950's: Tolkien's letters include his correspondences with the scriptwriter (who's name eludes me), and offer many insights into what Tolkien thought was important and even irrelevant to the story. However, the project was not cancelled because of logistics - it was going to be animated - but because the studio execs decided that the audience for a Rings movie simply was not big enough to justify the film.

(Many film execs boldly made the same predictions in 2001: most of them are still smelling of eggs every day regardless of what they had for breakfast! )

And, as Pearl notes, many Tolkien fans feel that Jackson & Co. mauled Tolkien's story. The differences between the Rings movies and book are far, far greater than the differences between the Potter movies and books, for example.
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They would risk bypassing the height of potter madness by waiting to release the films after all the books have been released, because lets face it pottermania will lose steam eventually. So, it was simply in their best interest to make the films as soon as possible because the hype was high and they knew no matter how bad (hmm...hmmm...SS and CoS) they were people would come out to see them.
heh, you probably are right! However, it does not always work like that. The Beatles' film "A Hard Day's Night" was filmed in black & white and rushed out because the studio, United Artists, felt that Beatlemania would not be around by the autumn of 1964. However, despite the rushed effort, the film is a classic: Richard Lester managed to create a real story about entrapment out of the every day mundanities of the Beatles!

So, Stone and Chamber could have been good: the problem was that whereas Richard Lester had a clear idea of a story when he put together HDN, Columbus clearly had no concept of the stories of either Stone or Chamber. There are no pointless scenes in HDN - even the music "videos" communicated visually the feeling of being trapped by success - which was the Achilles' heel of the Columbus films. (Actually, that is true for of all of his movies that I ever have seen, not just the Potter films!)

And that gets back to the main issue. Would it have helped to wait? I do not see how. We knew what the stories of Stone and Chamber were in 1997 and 1998. Kloves actually had them in the script (which can be found online). However, the art of story telling (in any medium) is, in large part, the art of effective communication of concepts: a story is, after all, a "greater" concept that emerges from some commonalities in the telling. As too often happens, between adaptation and presentation, something got lost in translation. (Hmmm, that sounds like a Cars song!)

Now, Harry Potter stories are sequels, and sometimes plot-elements important to one story appear in earlier stories. However, that really should not affect the filmmaking: Chekhov's Rule works both ways, but it only works within a single presentation. The gun fired late in Chamber must be shown early in Chamber; showing it in Stone does not count as that was 12 months ago. Conversely, the gun shown in Stone needs to be fired there: you cannot wait until Chamber to do so.


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  #34  
Old April 3rd, 2008, 2:15 am
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

I understand what you're saying about Checkov's rule, but some plot devices may be carried over from one sequel to the next. For instance, the Marauder's Map - we should have learned in PoA that we knew the creators, but this was cut. In DH we learn that it is one of the Deathly Hallows, yet this item has been carried forth from book/movie one.

Also, there are continuing themes that need to be portrayed, such as 'the Greater Good' and whether it is a good philosophy or not. The concept of growth, not only chronological, like for the kids, but maturational development, especially in thinking, like the Horcruxes over Hallows. This can be served best by having them shown debating the principles, without going back to where they were in the previous film. I guess what I'm saying is that in sequels, there needs to be some carry-over, negating some of the concepts of Checkov's rule, though it is certainly necessary for stand-alone films/plays.

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Old April 3rd, 2008, 3:44 am
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

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I understand what you're saying about Checkov's rule, but some plot devices may be carried over from one sequel to the next. For instance, the Marauder's Map - we should have learned in PoA that we knew the creators, but this was cut. In DH we learn that it is one of the Deathly Hallows, yet this item has been carried forth from book/movie one.
Obviously, there is nothing saying that the gun fired once cannot be fired twice: however, if the gun is to be fired much later, then the gun has to be "put on the wall" again. So, if Hallows uses the Map (and there is no need for it to do so), then Hallows has to put this gun on the wall again.

That being said, "who" made the map never is a gun of any sort, and thus did not (and probably should not) have been in the film. What is relevant is that Fred, George and Lupin all know how the map works. It never is important how. (If it is, then the book is in trouble as it never explains how Fred & George knew!)
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Also, there are continuing themes that need to be portrayed, such as 'the Greater Good' and whether it is a good philosophy or not.
The Greater Good is not so much a continuing theme, but the story of Deathly Hallows. (Yes, I'm pimping myself outrageously! ) However, that is the Deathly Hallows story: Prince is a story about Harry Potter's personal politics; again, "right vs. easy" choices, but this time concerning how Harry chooses to view people, and how he encourages others to view people. Order is a story about Harry's "right vs. easy" choices of personal isolation.

Now, one neat thing (and this might be to what you are referring) about the Harry Potter series is that each story is a subtheme throughout the remainder of the series. "Greater Good," just like isolation, personal politics, truth-seeking, loyalty, desires and bravery, is a theme in the other six stories. However, that was a neat thing that books could do: a movie could no more do this than a book could sustain a visual motif! So, save "Greater Good" for the story about Harry's wrestling with the greater good: otherwise, the mixing of themes will cloud the story!
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This can be served best by having them shown debating the principles, without going back to where they were in the previous film. I guess what I'm saying is that in sequels, there needs to be some carry-over, negating some of the concepts of Checkov's rule, though it is certainly necessary for stand-alone films/plays.
Well, as far as Joe and Jane Audience is concerned, each film that they are seeing is the stand-alone for that night. Remember, they are paying Yates, Heyman, Kloves, etc., to tell them a story: the audience is not supposed to do any work on their own. (Prerequisites for paid services are verboten save at Universities!)

So, Chekhov's still applies: introducing something for no other reason than that it will be shown again in a later movie simply wastes the audiences' time (and money, as time is money), and not explaining something because it was in a prior film means that the filmmakers are not doing what the audience is paying them to do.

Now, I think that you are on the mark with the first statement: there has to be some debate about the Greater Good in Hallows if that movie is to communicate the story. However, that belongs in the Hallows movie and in the Hallows movie only: it would muddy the waters if, say, Hermione and Harry started debating the Greater Good in Order (as it has nothing to do with Harry's isolation) or even Prince (although it is closer, as Hermione skirts near this when Harry campaigns against Snape and for the Prince).

Just as long as each film tells the story that Rowling told in the corresponding book, then the continuity between the tales is not too important: Rowling herself did not really rely on this as she reintroduced all of the key plot elements and characters even in the later books! With the exception of Order, Rowling stuck to Chekhov's Rule (which was originally formulated for novels) pretty assiduously: remember, many "early" showings of guns were situations where some person or thing had to be in a scene, anyway; Rowling just opted to use someone/thing that would be important later. Harry Potter fans magnified these things in retrospect because of what we learned later: but we never could have spotted Cedric, the Locket, etc., as important when we first encountered them as there were dozens (if not hundreds) of comparable details that never were important. After all, you have to put things on the wall other than the gun just to make it look like a room: but there is nothing saying that you cannot go back and use (say) a statue on the mantle under the gun, too! That is what Rowling liked to do.


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  #36  
Old April 3rd, 2008, 4:25 am
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

Wimsey, thanks for your good and timely reply!

I do want to bring back the concept of character development. The Harry of PS/SS or CoS would not be able to conceptualize the 'Greater Good' or 'Right vs. Easy', due to his emotional maturation, yet it is the same Harry who has evolved into a young adult, who does deal with these. With the adults we see a continuance of their previous levels of emotional and maturational development as we get to know them better. There is a continuity in a sequel that a stand-alone film/book/play can't offer. We don't need to get re-introduced to these same characters who continue in the same ways (unless they are really minor characters). This is what I meant by a partial disregarding of Checkov's rule.

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  #37  
Old April 3rd, 2008, 5:20 pm
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

Yes, I think they should have waited. That way nothing important would be left out, and they could give good lead-ins to what would be important later. And another reason it that after we all get depressed because the series is over, we could have more HP films to look forward to, too. We still do have some movies to look forward too, but not very many.


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Old April 4th, 2008, 12:12 am
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

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And frankly it would have been really cool if they'd been shot one right after the other (just as "LOTR"), rather than there being a lag of a year or two between.
It may have been "cool" but it would also have been illegal.

These are child actors we are talking about. The number of hours they are allowed to work by law is severely - and properly - restricted. During the breaks between one film and the next, the kids needed to get on with their education, have holidays, etc.

There is no realistic comparison with the LOTR films which were made concurrently with cast and crew often working 12 hours per day.

It may have been "cool" but it would also have been utterly ridiculous.

How can an eleven year old child portray a sixteen year old with an interesting romantic life, etc.?

Finally, why would the adult actors sign up for years of back-to-back filming of kids' stories? They have other, more challenging, projects they want to do between the HP films.

You have not thought this through.

Aside from those points - what Wimsey said.


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Old April 4th, 2008, 1:20 am
sunshinehannah  Female.gif sunshinehannah is offline
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

I think that it probably would of make them work a bit better with the storyline but, all in all, it wasn't too much of a big deal as JK Rowling worked alongside the film makers too make sure all the really relevant stuff was put in.


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  #40  
Old April 4th, 2008, 1:54 am
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Wimsey  Male.gif Wimsey is offline
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Re: Should the movies have been made after all of the books were written?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fairygdmther View Post
Wimsey, thanks for your good and timely reply!
heh, it's rare from me these days, but no problem!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fairygdmther View Post
I do want to bring back the concept of character development. The Harry of PS/SS or CoS would not be able to conceptualize the 'Greater Good' or 'Right vs. Easy', due to his emotional maturation, yet it is the same Harry who has evolved into a young adult, who does deal with these.
Oh, sure, I can see that. However, like the books, that really emerges only when you stand back and look at all the stories. One could do that with the movies: indeed, if you just watch the last three movies back-to-back-to-back, you can see some over-arching commonalities. It's tough for a movie to present a "Bildungsroman," as "childish" and "mature" writing (and the writing of "childish" and "mature" thoughts for protagonists) are much more distinct than are "childish" and "mature" cinematography. However, the tone of the films does become more dark and adult, as befitting the subject matter, and people have picked up on this.

Theoretically, knowledge of what came later might have persuaded the WB guys to go with a Cuarón or even a Terry Gilliam (who was Rowling's choice) early, instead of the "light and fluffy" director Columbus. However, Goblet of Fire was out by the time they made this choice, and it should have been clear by then where the series was headed. (Of course, the "suits" seemed to think that Harry was permanently 12, too, as they planned to replace Radcliffe once he outgrew the part!)

Still, the "suits" mistake is a common one: most series like this feature a permanent 12-year old in the same halcyonic world. This has led a few movie critics to be perplexed by the darker tones of the last three movies: some (such as Roger Ebert) have thought that the darkness is an invention of the movies. In his review of Order, Ebert comments on this directly, although he notes that he begins to suspect that it is Rowling, not the movie-makers. However, poor Roger went on to hope that the next movie would return to the "light" form of the first two stories. Alas! He's in for a nasty treat. (Well, I hope he does: but poor Mr. Ebert has not been well in recent years, it is quite possible that he'll join Siskel in the big theater in the sky before Hallows comes out )


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