Nearly a decade after the final movie was released, a new take on the magical book series is set to hit our home screens, but for some Harry Potter fans, the news is unwelcome.
They are saying that they are ready to boycott the new HBO series after it was revealed that J. K. Rowling will be an executive producer on the show.
However, the fifty-seven-year-old author has hit back at these fans with a sarcastic message on social media.
Now, Rowling may have created the beloved Harry Potter universe, but she hasn’t fallen short of controversy – especially when it comes to the LGBTQ+ community.
So much so, that many threatened to boycott the latest Harry Potter video game, Hogwarts Legacy.
But first lets go back to where it all began. What started out as a mere musing while stuck on a delayed train in London, 1990, led to a young Joanne Rowling conjuring up the magical story of Harry Potter.
Thirty years since it’s creation, over 500 million copies of the book franchise have been sold worldwide in eighty different languages, making it one of the best-selling book series of all time.
The adventures of Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger were quick to capture a vast and loyal fanbase, with children and adults alike being instantly captivated by the novel.
So, of course, it didn’t take long for the movie adaptations to come along, bringing Rowling’s words and imagination to life by transforming them into a series of blockbuster movies.
The wizardry and witchcraft mania that was induced by the books was only exaggerated after the release of the on-screen adaptations which, collectively, grossed around $6.5 billion in total.
Despite her popularity, in recent years, many have deemed Rowling to be extremely problematic.
As some may already be aware, the author was accused of being transphobic by dozens of fans back in June 2020, after she posted a string of divisive tweets criticising a headline about “those who menstruate.”
She wrote at the time: “‘People who menstruate.’ I’m sure there used to be a word for those people. Someone help me out. Wumben? Wimpund? Woomud?” referring to a post she shared.
And it only got worse from there, she went on to say: “If s*x isn’t real, there’s no same-s*x attraction. If s*x isn’t real, the lived reality of women globally is erased. I know and love trans people, but erasing the concept of s*x removes the ability of many to meaningfully discuss their lives. It isn’t hate to speak the truth.”
And many said that she had now ruined Harry Potter for them.
The tweets sparked huge backlash online, and In response to the author’s comments, Harry Potter actors Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint spoke out, sharing their solidarity with the trans community.
Radcliffe gave a statement through the LGBT s***ide prevention charity the Trevor Project, saying: “Transgender women are women. Any statement to the contrary erases the identity and dignity of transgender people and goes against all advice given by professional health care associations who have far more expertise on this subject matter than either Jo or I.”
Despite all of the controversy surrounding Rowling, it seems she is still heavily involved in plans for her franchise, and particularly with the new HBO series which has now been confirmed.
“The series will feature a new cast to lead a new generation of fandom, full of the fantastic detail, much-loved characters and dramatic locations that Harry Potter fans have loved for over 25 years,” Warner Bros Discovery CEO David Zaslav confirmed.
“Each season will be authentic to the original books and bring Harry Potter and these incredible adventures to new audiences around the world, while the original, classic and beloved films will remain at the core of the franchise and available to watch globally.”
However, fans are already up in arms after it was confirmed JK Rowling is on board as an executive producer.
“It’s so cool that a whole new generation of kids will be able to experience learning about hateful and baseless transphobia,” one person wrote.
Another said simply: “DO NOT SUPPORT THIS SHOW.”
In response to these fans who plan to boycott the show, Rowling issued a sarcastic message to her Twitter followers.
She wrote: “Dreadful news, which I feel duty bound to share. Activists in my mentions are trying to organise yet another boycott of my work, this time of the Harry Potter TV show.
“As forewarned is forearmed, I’ve taken the precaution of laying in a large stock of champagne.”
At the time of writing, Rowling’s tweet has been seen over eleven million times, and has received a mixed reception.
One wrote: “Girl shut up lmaooooooo. Your tweets sound like they’re from an automated bot account.”
Another said: “Maybe if you stop talking like a villain we will stop treating you like one.”
While a third commented: “I’ll never understand this. J. K. has only ever stood up for women’s rights. The maniac hard left want labels on everything except what is actually a woman. They’re very confused people. Enjoy your champagne J. K., my kids thank you for your books.”