Michael Goldenberg, the screenwriter of the Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix movie recently gave an interview in which he discusses meeting JKR, adapting the book to film, Quidditch and more.
Below are some snippets from the interview, which you can read in full here:
It's not just David Yates, and David Heyman, and I, and the actors. It's however many thousand people are working, doing backbreaking labor, and endless nights, and killing themselves to get this prop done, or that set painted, or that special effect finished because they love these movies, and they really care about these movies. And these movies are their legacy. They're damn proud of these movies, as they should be. ... Believe me, we care as much as it's possible to care.
Mr. Goldenberg on cutting down the book for film:
Even though the book is the longest book, as far as the actual amount of narrative material and story, it's not that much different than the other books; there's just a lot more detail and some sub-plots and digressions, but in terms of the main story, it seemed pretty manageable. I mean, the heartbreak is always, "What do you have to lose? What can't you find on the floor?
But David Yates and I worked from the beginning. We both like really dense films which are very generous in the same way books are so generous, and look for every opportunity to get everything we could in there. And where we couldn't, to sort of pay homage to, to have it somewhere in the background or to feel like it could be taking place off-screen. Because we both grew up with those kinds of films where you can watch them again and again and see the details and we're both pretty hard-core geeks, ourselves.
On cutting Quidditch and Ron from the movie:
I know there was some controversy about the Ron-Quidditch sub-plot. I hated to cut anything. But in that case, because it wasn't really central to the story and there's so much else to deal with, we all felt pretty early that was something that might not make the film. But on the same token, the spirit of that story, and Ron growing as a character and Ron facing challenges and coming into his own in the same way that Harry is, we tried to get that into the film in other ways, as much as possible. So, you feel like, if not the details of that story, at least the spirit of it is present in the film. I feel like we've done that.