Scottish Harry Potter fan Alex tells us he'll be in the next installment of J.K. Rowling's series, Goblet of Fire -- as an extra.
He was one of 100 students picked to ride the Hogwarts Express steam engine over the Glenfinnan Viaduct for recent Warner Bros. filming.
Alex sent us this report:
I live in Scotland and over the weekend I was fortunate enough to be one of those 100 students who were used as extras when Harry Potter 4 were filming at the Glenfinnan Viaduct. It was like a dream come true for such an avid Harry Potter fan like me.
The scene was of the Hogwarts Express going over the famous Viaduct on its way to Hogwarts (the same one which was featured in Chamber of Secrets when the Ford Anglia had its run-in with the train). We all had to arrive at Glenfinnan Station really early at 5:30 in the morning. The Hogwarts Express was so cool. When we were actually on the train it was even better!
They were using a helicopter to film the train going over the Viaduct. We were given strict instruction not to look out the window at it and to just pretend it wasn't there. It came pretty close to the train and must have been able to see inside which was obviously the reason they had people on the train.
Unfortanately Dan [Radcliffe], Rupert [Grint] and Emma [Watson] weren't there. Instead, they had three doubles, which was still cool. I was able to talk to them for a bit. They seemed really nice. I think the Harry double said that his name was Ryan, the Ron double's name was Ricky. I remember that because I remember him joking that the knitted "R" on his Weasley jumper really stood for Rickie and not Ron -- ha ha. Hermione double's name was Jo and she was like 24 but she still looked like Emma. They said that they were staying in a hotel in nearby Fort William and that Dan, Rupert and Emma were filming a different scene down in London.
We were going back and forth on the train loads of times but at 1 p.m. we had to swap with 50 more extras because we were only allowed to work so many hours as we were under 16 and came in so early in the morning. But as the new extras had just been brought in at 1 p.m. they could work all afternoon. The next day it was pretty much the same thing with me doing the morning shift again. I managed to get some pictures of the train on my phone and tried to get some of the doubles but was told we can't have pictures of them. Maybe Warner Brothers wants to keep it a secret that they use doubles or something.
The following pictures were taking on Alex's mobile phone:
Thanks to Alex for his account of the recent filming.
(Want to ride the train yourself? You could be just as lucky when HP Fan Trips announces its 2005 tour. We've once again secured exclusive access to engine #5972 for trip participants. Stay tuned for the official announcement in October! Here's me and Eric from MuggleNet on the train this past summer.)