Saturday, January 22, 2005

GoF Report from
This November, J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, the fourth book about the young wizard and his training at Hogwarts will come to the big screen with as much excitement surrounding it as the previous three movies. was recently given a tour of the amazing Potter sets that have made their home at London's Leavesden Studios for almost five years, and fans of the Potter books and movies should be just as thrilled with what's ahead. Director Mike Newell (Four Weddings and a Funeral, Mona Lisa Smile) has come on board for the fourth installment, which centers around a Triwizard Tournament that pits Harry against three other wizards in arduous tasks on land and in the water. This competition is sure to make the fourth movie a lot bigger in scope and scale. Although "Goblet" has a new director, they will use some of the same sets as the other movies, but production designer Stuart Craig, who created the look for all of the Potter films, designed new outdoor environments for the Triwizard Tournament and impressive outdoor sets that includes the camp at the Quidditch World Cup and an enormous graveyard. Rowlings' fourth book also created new challenges for the returning production crew: creature effects supervisor Nick Dudman built a full-size animatronic dragon, while costume designer Jany Temine designed hundreds of ball gowns for the movie's centerpiece, the Yule Ball.
Of course, there's a new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, a role in the Harry Potter mythos akin to the drummer in Spinal Tap. This time, he's the scar-ridden war-torn wizard Mad-Eye Moody, as played by Brendan Gleeson of Troy and 28 Days Later. British film and stage actress Miranda Richardson, who appears in "Phantom of the Opera," joins the cast as pesky tabloid journalist Rita Skeeter, who will provide much of the fourth film's humor. The other wizarding schools have their own equivalent to Dumbledore with the French school Beauxbatons being led by the giant Madame Maxime, played by Frances De La Tour, and Pedja Bjelac (Eurotrip) playing the less than pleasant Durmstrang professor Igor Karkaroff. The fourth film also marks the first on-screen appearance of Harry's arch-nemesis, the dark wizard Voldemort, as played by Ralph Fiennes, although the way he'll show up in the movie is the biggest secret at Leavesden these days.Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire opens this November, but look for a full report on the fantastic sets as well as interviews with Nick Dudman, Jany Temine, Potter producer David Heyman, and some of the new cast later this year.

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