Ok.. so I have read all of the Harry Potter books at least 6 times each.. who am I kidding maybe 20 times each.. I have seen all the movies countless times.. I admit it.. I'm a Harry Potter nerd. Just outside of London are the film studios that they used for the filming of the movies along with countless locations around England.
One of Paul's many nicknames is Harry, cause he kinda looks like Harry potter with his glasses on ;) I think its adorable. Paul started watching the movies after he met me. He had seen some. So he was very excited about the film studio as well. I can't even begin to describe it and how I want to go back. We were there for hours yet I feel I missed so much. Here is the first round of pictures.. We entered and sat down to watch an intro movie from the three actors about how these film studios were where they basically grew up. After the film was done the screen lifted up and there was the door that lead into the great hall. You walk in in awe you are actually walking into the movie. I was SOOO Cool. Enjoy the magic
We exited the great hall and entered the prop's section of the studio. It was amazing the level of detail that was included in this movie. The detail that went into not only the sets but also the props. It was cool to see interviews with actors and set designers about the little things that made these movies so incredible. In the common room of the student halls there was such detail put into the notes on a bulletin board to make it seem authentic. All of the labels in the potion room were hand drawn. (also from a photographer's point of view everything was so well lit even for all the silly people taking pictures with their Ipads)
After the costumes and props you exit the first studio and head into the larger prop section. There was the magic night bus and the Bridge that Neville Longbottom blows up at the end of the last movie. Privet Drive and the house where He who must not be named almost catches Harry and Hermione. The Chess pieces from the first movie were also all around the grounds as well as the magic car and Hagrid's motorcycle.
We then headed into the second studio that housed all of the art departments. It was so cool to see all the make-up and robotics that went into making this movie. Did you know that Hagrid's head was actually all a robot? The actor had a large robotic head costume that he wore.. So cool. The art department wove through Diagon Alley where some of the Owls from the movie were on display. They were quite noisy.
We continued on to the blue-print and model section. There was also a lot of fan art that lined the walls. It was unbelievable how much work went into these movies.
So at this point we were completely blown away. This was such a cool experiance. We had two rooms left to see. With dramatic music playing in the background you walk around the corner from the cool paper models into a room that housed the scale model of the whole school of Hogwarts. This model they built and used to film many of the arial shots and flying scenes.. Paul's reaction when we walked around the corner was "F*uck" Which he then apologized to the woman standing in front of him. She giggled and said she had the exact same reaction. It was hard to not have that reaction.
Exhausted but still pressing on we headed to our hotel which was where I stayed the last time I was in London. We checked in (same room as I had before creepy) and headed into London to meet up with Fran one of Paul's friends. The trains and timing were against us and it took us 2 hours to get to where we were meeting them. We were starving to death by that point and got a quick bite to eat and headed to a pub for a drink. One quick drink later we had to head back to the Tube to head back out of London to our hotel. A lot of transportaion for a quick visit.. We passed out trying to recover before heading back into the city again tomorrow.