You might be wondering why on my health coach and gluten free food blog I would be writing about this event. Well first it’s important to do things you enjoy, read books you like, see movies that entertain you and make sure you are not working all the time. Second and most importantly for me, I GOT TO GO!
For those of you who know me I am beyond a huge Harry Potter fan. I have loved the books from the first time I started reading them just to see what on earth was occupying my oldest son. He’s grown up reading these books and so have I. Well not in years but in life.
If you have not read or seen any of the movies I am in a way, jealous. You have the opportunity to let them unfold for you for the first time. They are wonderful books filled with love, learning, grief, trials and tribulations, history, past literature and a whole new world to learn about. I was just going to read the first book to get an idea of what my son was reading. I was on vacation and had some time. Once I started the first book I couldn’t put it down. I don’t think I made dinner that night. The next day I had to find a bookstore with the second one so I could read that too. This was odd for me. You see I really didn’t spend much time on reading, especially for pleasure. Being dyslexic I had always found it a chore, until I started reading J.K. Rowling’s books.
My son and I would talk about our predictions for the next book as we anxiously awaited them to be released. The movies started and we would do the same wondering what they would leave in or cut out. It’s been a wonderful ride and I’ve loved every minute.
Our local radio station, Mix 107.3, was running a contest to take some of their listeners to the movie premiere in New York City. I of course entered as I have every other contest out there to win a trip or something having to do with Harry Potter. I really had forgotten that I had entered and when I received a call from a DC area code I had no idea who it could be. I almost didn’t pick it up because I was watching the World Premiere in London for the movie on my computer. See I told you I was obsessed. When I answered and they told me I had won I think I almost jumped through the ceiling. I couldn’t stop smiling for days.
I was told I could bring one guest. My oldest son who had introduced me to the books thought he deserved to come and my husband who puts up with my obsession (and funds it) wanted to come too but he has not read most of the books. It was a hard decision and I told my son he did deserve to come but I took my husband. 10 hours on a bus with someone, I had to choose wisely. I wish I could have brought both of them.
Monday was the big event. We loaded on the motor coach driven by a wonderful man, Clarence. Our chaperone from the radio station was Jimmy Alexander. He is also a big Harry Potter fan and a ton of fun. We headed to NYC to Lincoln Center. We arrived early and with it being brutally hot out they let us wait in the air conditioned bus. When we got off the bus we walked right down the Red Carpet. How cool is that!
We had to go inside right away so we didn’t get to watch them all arrive individually and be photographed and interviewed. We were inside watching it on our iPhones. Silly but true.
After some time David Heyman, the man who produced all of the Harry Potter movies came out on stage. Then the other two David’s joined him, David Barron who produced all of the movies but two and David Yates who directed the last four Harry Potter films. Joining them on stage was Steven Kloves who was the screen writer who turned all but one of the books into screen plays.
Then the crowd really went wild when the actors started to join them on stage. Alan Rickman who plays Severus Snape, Matthew Lewis who plays Neville Longbottom, Tom Felton who plays Draco Malfoy, Rupert Grint who plays Ron Weasley, Emma Watson who plays Hermonie Granger and Daniel Radcliffe who plays Harry Potter.
The producers and director talked as well as the younger actors. I was hoping Alan would say something but he didn’t. I was only 7 rows from the stage so I had an amazing view. It was so fantastic to see these people in person who I have watched for so many years. After they spoke they left the stage to take seats in the audience. I think I would have passed out if one of them sat down next to me.
The audience was not full of just fans like me who had won a trip but there were a lot of other industry people. Many actors came and were scattered around the auditorium. Just behind us was Ariana Grande who was taking a lot of photos with fans. She’s on a Nickoldenon show called Victorious. Also in the crowd was Matthew Broderick and his wife Sarah Jessica Parker. Jay Manuel from Canada’s Next Top Model show was there and he sparkled from across the room. I also saw Michael Chiklis from No Ordinary Family, The Shield and Fantastic Four.
One of the funniest things I thought happened to Scott. He was walking into the men’s room and he walked right into the guy coming out. He didn’t stop to notice he had just crashed into Joey Fatone from Nsync.
After the event I only saw David Heyman and David Yates hang around. I did manage to get to thank David Yates and get his autograph in my British copy of The Deathly Hallows. I was hoping to get more autographs but just the experience of being there was worth so much more.
It was an amazing event. Let me also say that the movie is wonderful. We watched it in 3D which usually bothers me but not this time. They did a great job with it and it’s not over done or gratuitous. It just flows. If you are a big fan of the books I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. I don’t want to give anything away but all I have to say is bring tissues.
The movie comes out in theaters at 12:01 am July 14th or July 15th to those who don’t have tickets yet. I hear it’s selling out all over the country. I have my midnight tickets and yes I will be there with my son. We’ll be seeing it in 2D so it will be interesting to see the difference.
Well I can’t thank Mix 107.3 enough for making a dream of mine come true. It was an amazing experience. To be so close in a room with the producers, directors and actors who have brought these wonderful books to screen for the last 10 years was just amazing. If you have not read the books and you think they are just for kids, well you are completely mistaken. They grow in complexity and deal with more and more adult issues as they go on. I’m not sure why you waited so long but why not venture into the world of Harry Potter.
Don’t forget this month I’m hosting Go Ahead Honey, It’s Gluten Free. The theme is It All Ends Here! Read all the details.
Jealous! And I can't WAIT for it to come out, lines to die down a little bit and then I'll be off to see it – maybe a week later but it will still be epic. But then they'll be over. And I'll be so sad to see them go. Have you read the Hunger Games? It's a kids trilogy – really really good, and the first movie will be out next year I think. Bonus, they're all written so no need for painful waiting for the next book to come out.
One small edit – Emma Watson is in Harry Potter. Emma Thompson who is also a wonderful actress is a bit old for the role of Hermione Granger. 🙂
Meaghan thank you for pointing that out. Can't believe I did that. Emma Thompson played the amazing Professor Trelawney and sadly was not there.
How in the world did you decide not to take your son? That somehow seems of and wrong. Why take a non fan? That's actually not cool in my book.
Wendy it was a hard decision to make and I wish I could have taken both of them but I guess you would have to be in my family to make that call.
oh, DIane, this is wonderful! I am so glad you were there. are you going to the midnite show with DADA tomorrow?
I will be at the midnight show at another location closer to my house with my son. Too far to drive that late in the morning. Enjoy the show!
Diane, I was on the bus with you, Jimmy Alexander and the rest of the winners from Mix 107.3 fm's contest on Monday… it was a great experience!! I enjoyed reading your post about it. 🙂 A fun little addition for your star sightings: just in front of Jay Manuel (I wondered who he was!) was Duff of Charm City Cakes, Baltimore, the Ace of Cakes! I thought it was neat to see someone famous from the same neck of the woods as us. Thanks for sharing your thoughts & pics!
How cool you got to see him. I heard Marc Sanchez from the NY Jets was there too. I'm sure there were a lot of people we missed. It was a great time. Jimmy was really funny too. I wish we could have gotten to talk more to each other on the bus but it wasn't set up that way.
Likewise – long rows and movies are not conducive to conversation. But it was still a great experience to share! Did you catch the "young listener," Riley, talking about it on the JDMS Tuesday? She was pretty cute! Even made fun of Jimmy a little (though he basically asked for it ;). I won't be making it to the midnight show tonight, but I'm already planning to go with my Mom at some point… at any rate, thanks again for sharing – I'm happy to share a few of my photos with you as well, if you'd like!
Chrissie, I missed Jimmy the next morning as I was sleeping! I'd love to see your pics too.
OMG – this looks so awesome!! You must have been REALLY close to the stage to get those pics!!
Diane, I'm thrilled that you had this experience! It really looks awesome. I love that photo of you and Scott and enjoyed seeing all the other pics, too. Emma Watson's dress is gorgeous and I can't believe Alan Rickman didn't speak. Thanks for sharing all the fun! Looking forward to the GAHIGF event! 🙂 Wonder if anyone other than you will make a Harry Potter themed recipe. 😉
Shirley it was one of the coolest things I've ever done and it went by so fast. Glad we have some pics. Not sure what I'll come up with for my dessert. It may be a drink recipe or something to snack on. I hope people have fun sharing what they like at the end of a good meal. It doesn't have to have anything to do with Harry Potter. I will weave together a story with everyone's recipe.
Okay, I'm officially jealous. I, too, have been a fan of the books from the very first one I read. The last few I got via Amazon in pre-order so I could get them on their official release date. I've got tickets to go with a friend to the IMAX 3-D version on July 17th. She's not read the books or seen the movies (she was afraid she'd get emotionally caught up in them and then there would be a sad ending). I offered to let her watch all the movies leading up to this final chapter (all 17 3/4 hours worth) but she said she'd rather wait, that she has a habit of reading the ending of a book first so she knows whether she wants to invest the time and effort into reading the whole thing. Hopefully I can convince her to at least watch Part 1 before we go.
Years ago I got a chance to see the Kenneth Branagh production of Hamlet before it hit the theaters. It was through the Art Institute in Chicago and Branagh was there to introduce the film. I was coming from the suburbs and due to a last minute change in the train schedule, arrived at the event after everyone was seated but before they had started anything. The theater was packed so I ended up in the very first row next to the aisle. Not my preferred location for watching a movie, but it was a place to sit. When Branagh came out to speak to the audience before the movie began, he stood RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME! Okay, not such a bad seat after all.
Janet how cool was that! I love Kenneth Branagh. He's a great actor. So close you could touch him. Hmmm…. I hope your friend enjoys the movie. I'm curios what she'll think not having seen any of the other ones. Have fun on the 17th. I'm headed to the 2D show tonight at midnight. Who needs sleep?
Oh, my gosh, Diane! What a fun post to read. I (finally) get to see the movie today at 2:15, I'm a bit antsy, and now I get to live vicariously through your adventure. Awesome! Did Scott enjoy himself? (He was smiling at least ;-))
Hi Carla! Thanks for stopping by. Glad you enjoyed the post. How did you like the movie? Have you read the books too? It was an amazing event and I was so lucky to go.
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