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Entries in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (7)

Thursday
Jul302009

Does Harry Potter have a drinking problem, or does he just hate journalism? (News Round-up)

Click to view the whole page from the Victoria Prophet

Even though I didn’t care much for Half-Blood Prince, I find myself looking up Harry Potter news nonetheless. To my surprise, even though HBP opened a couple weeks ago, there are some new stories about it floating around. Here are a couple good ones.

Some parents think Harry Potter, and everyone at Hogwarts, may have a drinking problem. They may have a point. The recent movie had a lot of drinking and partying. We’re never quite sure what’s in butterbeer either, but when Hermoine drinks it, she acts a bit drunk. Genni ends up making out with a boy at the pub; was this a alcohol induced hookup?

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Wednesday
Jul222009

Harry Potter fans vandalize stop signs, name He-Who-Can't-Be-Named

Oh boy. Harry Potter fans in the U.S. and U.K. are using markers to vandalize stop signs. The vandals (Muggles) are writing “Voldemort” under the word “STOP.” Pretty funny, right? It says “STOP Voldemort.” Some signs also have other fun Potter scribblings on them, like a lightning bolt.

The defaced STOP signs have been popping up everywhere since Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince hit theaters. In Wauwatosa, Wisconsin police estimate that as many as 75 stop signs have been vandalized with permanent marker throughout the city. If the police can’t clean the marker off, each of these signs will have to be replaced, costing the city upwards of $80 a sign.

Who the hell do these vandals think they are, anyway? City budgets are strapped all across the country due to the nationwide economic recession, and Harry Potter fans have the gall to defile government property. Worse yet, they explicitly name “He-Who-Can’t-Be-Named.” Read your own text guys, we aren’t supposed to be writing his name everywhere—there’s like a Hogwarts decree against that or something. Especially for Muggles, who shouldn’t even know anything about this mess.

It’s too bad it took so long for this STOP sign abuse to kick in. Think of the possibilities. Ghostbusters fans could have wrote “STOP Zuul” or Willow fans could have wrote “STOP Queen Bavmorda.” Think of the mass panic, when people realized they don’t know how to stop Zuul. Thousands would fear being turned into a pig, should they try to stop Queen Bavmorda. She’s a witch, you know. Luckily Warwick Davis is still around.

Saturday
Jul182009

The Box Office is quite Twittery lately

Reuters has written about something I’ve been noticing lately. Movies are flopping a lot faster this year. They’re also rising a lot faster. From my experience, midnight showings are growing more popular, though perhaps its because this year is particularly full of sequels (what year isn’t).

Reuters speculates that social site Twitter is responsible for a lot of the hastening.It’s one of many new ways movie fans are instantly communicating with one another. Many times, people text or Twitter right during the movie, to the dismay of everyone sitting around them.

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Wednesday
Jul152009

Harry Potter 6 posts the largest midnight opening ever

I totally predicted this one. $22.2 million from 3,003 theaters: that’s how much Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince grossed at 12:01am last night. It’s a new record, besting The Dark Knight by $4 million. The movie has a shot at the single day record too, which Dark Knight also set at $67,165,092, if it can rake in another $45 million by the end of the night tonight. $45 million is do-able. Transformers 2 made $46 million in it’s opening day, after a midnight showing of $16 million.

I don’t think Harry Potter will be setting any weekend records though. It may trend more like Bruno: down. Much of the audience leaving seemed bewildered and disappointed at my midnight showing. Word of mouth may not go so well, despite the high critical acclaim Half-Blood Prince seems to be getting. From what I’m told, this movie also butchers the book a lot more than the other movies, which will bother hardcore Potter-ites. My review of the movie is here.

Wednesday
Jul152009

Review - Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince **1/2

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is a beautiful and hilarious movie that I desperately wanted to enjoy. Unfortunately, it lingers and plods on awkward teenage relationships, forgetting that it has an adventure to tell. Like the halls of Hogwarts these days, I left feeling empty.

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Tuesday
Jul142009

Harry Potter poised for a BIG opening night

I bought my tickets for Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince midnight opening around 4pm today. To my surprise, I was the last person to get a ticket. All 18 screens at my local theater have sold out. This is crazy. Transformers 2 is the only other midnight opening I’ve seen sell out, but not until a few minutes before midnight. NCG Cinema (I live in Lansing, Michigan) is even opening up some 3am showings to accommodate demand.

Even odder, there were Potter-ites playing little Quidditch board games, wearing robes, and holding wands already…and they had been there since lunchtime. No one waited for 12 hours to see Transformers 2. Harry Potter 6 may set a midnight opening record for the series.

I made calls to the other major theater in the area, Celebration! Cinema, and they have sold out 11 shows (of 12 possible) and had Potter-ites hanging out as well. Every theater in Lansing and East Lansing has sold out at least one midnight showing of Harry Potter and has had to open up additional screens to accommodate demand. 

Granted, this is only data from Lansing, Michigan, but Potter fever seems to be at a high. Positive early reviews of the movie (here’s one from Roger Ebert) may have helped. The last entry in the series, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix grossed $44.2 million its opening day, which was also a Wednesday, almost exactly two years ago (7/11/2007).

Wish me luck. It’s gonna be a crowded one. I’ll do a bit of tweeting from the front lines. My Twitter handle is @JeffreyVC for those interested.

If anyone else has similar stories, please comment.

Saturday
Jul112009

Draco Malfoy finally gets evil in Half-Blood Prince (News Recap)

Everyone seems to be talking about Malfoy lately. Below are some snippets from some of the better interviews and articles I’ve read.

USA Todayhas a great article on the evolution of Draco Malfoy in the upcomingHarry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.Tom Felton, who has played Malfoy for almost a decade, is looking forward to his larger role.

“He’s been given a task to obtain the same greatness as Harry has, working for the other side,” says Felton. “He thinks he’s going to do it, and he revels in the chance to be the chosen one, if you will. He likes to think he’s equally strong-willed as Harry, and whatever Harry can do, he can do better. But deep down, he knows he can’t do it. There’s a real conflict of emotions.” - USA Today

Unlike his character, Fenton seems like a much more sedate and courteous kid. For someone who’s been in five of the most successful movies of all time, he’s very polite too.

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