I'm a big fan of Harry Potter. I actually remember when I started reading the books back in high school, which is now over a decade ago ... wow. So I was pretty sad that I didn't get to attend the preview event for the new Harry Potter exhibit at the Museum of Science. But, Bloggery Media Rep Dan did get go to and this is what he had to say:
This past Thursday I had the pleasure of visiting the Museum of Science for a sneak preview of the Harry Potter exhibit. While there, I had the opportunity to speak to Matthew Lewis, the actor who plays Neville Longbottom about his impression as he toured the exhibit. The exhibit, which opened Sunday, is truly a required trip for any Harry Potter fan.
The exhibit consists of props and artifacts from each of the Harry Potter films. In some cases, entire walls of the set were removed and shipped to Boston. In fact, to accommodate one window of the Great Hall, a ceiling at the Museum of Science was knocked out! The result is a unique trip through the films that truly recreates the wonder of the books.
The most remarkable feature of the exhibit was the extraordinary attention to detail. Not only were all the props used in the movies exceptionally precise, but the exhibit itself was intentionally arranged as it took you from the sorting ceremony, to the Hogwarts Express, through the Forbidden Forest, to the Great Hall, and everywhere else in between. Even the museum employees working the exhibit add to the ambiance as they all speak in impeccable British accents and, when asked, will all tell you they hail from "London proper". In the end, I truly felt like I had had an experience unique from all the movies and books.
A perfect example, among the many, many available, of the intricacies of props on display is the collection of The Daily Prophets at the exhibit. Each newspaper only appears for seconds on camera, but each of these is complete with real articles corresponding to their headlines regarding the goings-on in the Harry Potter universe. According to Matthew Lewis, these detailed props created an environment on set helped the actors truly live their roles; these newspapers were not simply props, but were part of a living breathing universe. This detail was visible throughout the exhibit, from the 20,000 real feathers used to make the hippogriff Buckbeak, to the precision of the Tri-Wizard cup.
Even the portions of the set that did not ever make it on film were quite meticulous. For example, although the Hungarian Horntail dragon Harry faces off with in the movie was entirely computer generated, a life size bust of the dragon was created to be scanned in. The advantage of creating a life-sized model was to maximize the detail present in the final product.
With all of these little touches, it was quite apparent to me just how these films cost hundreds of millions of dollars in total!
So, while I certainly questioned why an exhibit consisting of the props of a movie about magic was in a museum dedicated to science, I certainly enjoyed myself and truly found the experience... magical (sorry, I had to).
Wow, the man is verbose isn't he? But he's also quite convincing. I'm thinking of maybe making a trip over this week.
Click (here) for more info on the exhibit (website has sound).
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