Harry Potter is a timeless franchise that not only the actors grew up on the set of but so did its beloved fanbase. A whole generation of millennials (and some of the Gen Z too) grew up dreaming of receiving a letter from Hogwarts on their 11th birthday, or really at any time.

Luckily, the iconic franchise is yet to exhaust itself. With spin-offs like Fantastic Beasts, the interest in the wizarding world of Harry Potter will always be there. With much more coming up, let’s dive deep into the lore of Harry Potter yet again for a recap and more updates.

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The Harry Potter movies in order

The Harry Potter movies are based on books written by J.K. Rowling. The first book was published in 1997, under two titles: Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone. The last book, Harry Potter and Deathly Hallows sold 12 million after its release in 2007.

Following the success of the books, the first movie adaption did not take long to come after the first novel was out. Rowling sold the film rights for the four first books to David Heyman in 1999, who then stepped up as a producer for all eight movies in the franchise.

Since the books are chronologically ordered, so are the movies. Except for the last book installment, The Deathly Hallows, which was split into two movies that came out in the span of eight months. All Harry Potter are listed in the following order:

Summary of all Harry Potter movies

To refresh your memory of all eight Harry Potter movies, let’s delve into a recap of each film in the franchise.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s / Sorcerer’s Stone

The first film, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s / Sorcerer’s Stone introduces the main character and gives a glimpse of his life before he was exposed to the magic world. Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) is an orphan, living in his aunt’s cupboard under the stairs, constantly bullied by her husband and son. On Harry’s 11th birthday, his bleak and lonely life gets interrupted by the appearance of Hagrid (Robbie Coltrane), who reveals to Harry that he is a wizard. Hagrid also says Harry’s parents, whom the boy believed died in a car accident, actually were murdered by Lord Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes), the evil wizard and the main antagonist.

Harry Potter and the Secret Chamber

The villain in the flesh is revealed in the second installment of the franchise, Harry Potter and the Secret Chamber. Harry begins his second year in Hogwarts, and he again has to save the day. The friends are investigating the case of a menacing presence lurking in the school and paralyzing the students there. Harry finds that he can Parseltongue, a language spoken by Salazar Slytherin – a founder of the Secret Chamber, the revelation of which led to the accidents in Hogwarts. At the end of the movie, Harry has to come face to face with young Voldermort (Christian Coulson) in their first battle.

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

The third film experiences the first switch in the series. First of all, a new director Alfonso Cuarón comes to tell the story of the Golden Trio approaching the mystery of an escaped prisoner of Azkaban, an infamous jail for the wizards. Simultaneously, Harry’s growth is explored, as well as his past. More than in the previous two films, we find out about Harry’s past.

Harry Potter and the Goblet Of Fire

Harry Potter and The Goblet Of Fire is one of the fan favorites. It is understandable, how we get glorious scenes of Harry fighting a dragon, sirens, and others during a magical tournament in which he mistakenly got admitted. Apart from plentiful action, the themes of teenage problems like first crushes are explored in the movie, giving it a whiff of a coming-of-age genre, and distilling the constant worries about defeating the great evil.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

In Order of the Phoenix, Harry is joined by Hogwarts students in saving Hogwarts from evil again – but this time, stakes are high with Harry finding out about the prophecy that says neither he nor Voldemort will live while one survives. The secret organization Order of the Phoenix instigates a rebellion against the Ministry of Magic which denies the return of the Dark Lord.

Harry Potter and Voldemort fighting in Hogwarts in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2.
Image from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2 trailer via Warner Bros. Pictures YouTube

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince increases in drama and tension when the influence of the Dark Lord becomes strong as ever with the rise of Death Eaters. Harry discovers the diary of a certain talented wizarding student ‘Half-Blood Prince’, which reveals a lot about Voldemort’s past. Harry tries to come up with a way to defeat Voldermort with the help of Dumbledore (Michael Gambon).

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1 and Part 2

The last two movies are the retelling of the final book, Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows. Both parts were released within a year. The first film essentially is a road movie, following the three friends on the quest to find ways to defeat the Dark Lord. Harry, Ron, and Hermione become aware of the dark artifacts of Voldemort – the Deathly Hallows, or Horcruxes, which are the reason he is invincible in battle. The Golden Trio needs to find and destroy the Horcruxes before the final battle in the last movie.

Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part 2 concludes the whole affair of the trio’s hunt for Horcruxes. Voldemort finds out about the trio looking for his Horcruxes, so he prepares to attack Hogwarts. The last battle is held at the wizarding school, where good will stand against evil for the final time. The last Harry Potter movie is still in the top 20 highest-grossing movies of all time, with reports showing it earning more than one billion dollars worldwide.

Where are the cast of Harry Potter now?

As the characters of the movies grew, so did the actors that played them. They have been under the spotlight for ten years, so everyone must be curious about how the actors are going to carry on in their careers.

Daniel Radcliffe

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Daniel Radcliffe was born in London, on July 23, 1989. The only child of a literary and casting agent, he started his acting career early.

Thus, Harry Potter was not Radcliffe’s debut. Young Daniel played in BBC’s TV adaptation of David Copperfield, and in The Tailor of Panorama before he was cast for the main role in Rowling’s movie franchise. For 10 years, Radcliffe was busy with Harry Potter, although he still partook in plays and independent films in between.

After Radcliffe took off the round-rimmed glasses of Harry Potter in 2011 when the franchise officially ended, his first post-Harry Potter major work was The Woman in Black (2012). He played the main role in the gothic horror movie. He continued playing in dark, periodic films with his role as Allen Ginsberg in Kill Your Darlings (2013) where he starred alongside Dane DeHaan in a biographical drama.

His most recent works include Miracle Workers (2019-2023), a comedy limited series created for TBS, and HBO Max’s special Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts (2022). In the reunion special, Radcliffe was joined by the rest of the principal cast and crew of the Harry Potter films.

Emma Watson

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Emma Watson was born in Paris, France on April 15 in 1990. Unlike Radcliffe, Watson’s only acting experience was from participating in school plays.

Just like her brilliant character in Harry Potter, a genius witch Hermione Granger, Watson focused on her studies even during her active acting career in Harry Potter. This led to her almost quitting after The Order of Phoenix came out, but, evidently, this never happened. She still managed to graduate. In 2014, Watson got a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature from an “Ivy League” Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island. Watson is also known for her active women’s rights work.

Concerning her acting career, Watson starred in The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012) right after the last Harry Potter, and Sofia Coppola’s crime film The Bling Ring (2013). That provided a shift in perception of Watson since she graduated from brave yet uptight Hermione to playing more diverse roles. She also starred in Beauty and the Beast (2017) and played one of the March sisters in Greta Gerwig’s adaptation of Little Women (2019).

Rupert Grint

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Grint was born on August 24, 1988. He debuted in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. A massive fan of Harry Potter books, 11-year-old Rupert secured himself the role of Ron Weasley.

Outside of Harry Potter, Grunt has had an active and rich acting career. He did quite a few voiceovers: for Happy Birthday Peter Pan (2005), American Dad! (2012), Postman Pat: The Movie (2014). Grint’s latest acting works include starring in an episode of Guillermo del Toro’s Cabinet of Curiosities (2022) and an apocalyptic horror film Knock at the Cabin (2023).

Tom Felton

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Similarly to Radcliffe, young Tom Felton, born on September 22, 1987, has already had acting experience before playing in Harry Potter. He even scored roles that made him recognizable. In 1996, he played Loius in Anna and the King where Tom acted alongside award-winning Silence of the Lambs actress Jodie Foster.

Before being cast as Draco Malfoy, Felton tried auditioning for the roles of Harry and Ron. Interestingly, he was only accepted for the role the third time, when he dyed his hair platinum blond and was seen for the role of a pure-blood wizard.

After Harry Potter, Felton continued his acting career. He appeared in many TV series, like the CW’s The Flash (2014-2023) and Origin (2018). His latest movies include Burial (2022) and Save the Cinema (2022). In the same year, Felton published his memoir Beyond the Wall: The Magic and Mayhem of Growing Up a Wizard. In the autobiography, he tells about his experience acting in the Harry Potter film series.

What’s next for the Harry Potter franchise?

Harry Potter, being one of the most popular movies of all time, could not just end with the last movie. After the franchise ended in 2011, many more Harry Potter-related things happened.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, a story written by Rowling, Jack Thorne, and John Tiffany is considered a continuation of the original books – while not being a whole novel. A play with the same name was staged in London, San Francisco, Melbourne, Toronto, and Tokyo. The Cursed Child narrates what happened 19 years later after Harry Potter defeated Lord Voldemort. Now his son, Albus, has taken center stage and the actions of the play revolve around his life as a first-year student in Hogwarts.

The 2022 reunion show Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts was more of a documentary rather than an addition to the story of Harry Potter. Reunited at the Making of Harry Potter studios.

New Harry Potter series for Max in 2025

Warner Bros. Discovery revealed earlier this year that Harry Potter will make a comeback on screens really soon.

A new TV series based on the seven books about a much beloved glasses-clad wizard will be released by Max, a rebranded HBO streaming service. Max’s chairman Casey Bloys said: “This new Max Original series will dive deep into each of the iconic books that fans have continued to enjoy for all of these years.”

Not much is known or said about the upcoming series yet. What is reported is that each season will be focusing on each one of the seven books, however, the series may run for 10 consecutive years, according to Bloys. Everyone is awaiting the series to premiere in 2025/26, and it will be available to watch on Max.

Harry Potter game and lego sets

For geeky lovers of Harry Potter, there is plenty of content, too. Hogwarts Legacy, an action role-play video game by Avalanche Software, was met warmly both by gamers and fans of the franchise. The game allows you to create your own character, who will become a student at Hogwarts. The open world of the game gives a lot to explore, starting from the wizarding school itself, and going as far as interacting with other students in the game, doing quests, and just exploring the school grounds. The central point of the plot is the fact that the player discovers the ancient, forgotten magic within them and wants to find out the reason behind it.

Moreover, LEGO has been bringing different aspects of Harry Potter movies to a square-blocked life. The latest addition to the LEGO Harry Potter collection will be released on September 1, 2023.

76417 Gringotts Wizarding Bank is what you thought it is. A wizarding bank ruled by goblins will include the bank itself, the vaults underground, and, of course, an infamous dragon guarding it (which made a memorable cameo in the Death Hallows movie CHECK). The prices are as follows:

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