New book prompts look at future Potter films

  June 17, 2003 at 4:59 PM ET
  Cheeser     HPANA (via Reuters)
 


From Reutersopens in new window:

With the new "Harry Potter" book hitting retail shelves this week, the movie industry has trained an eye on whether the films about the British boy wizard can continue casting their lucrative spell over box offices and merchandise sales. The stars, Daniel Radcliffe, who plays Potter, and Rupert Grint and Emma Watson, who portray his sidekicks Ron Weasley and Hermione Granger, are aging beyond the range of their characters, and the series' loyal fans are growing older.

All signs indicate the next movie, Prisoner of Azkaban will help Harry Potter replace Jurassic Park as the third-largest money-making franchise in history when it hits theaters in summer 2004, said Kaufman Bros. analyst Mark May.

It will be followed in November 2005 by Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and the movie for this week's Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix will come about 18 months later, a Warner Bros. spokeswoman said.

Enthusiasm for the books is unlikely to wane, but Seth Siegel, co-founder of licensing agency and consultant The Beanstalk Group, said merchandise attached to the franchise may appeal to a smaller audience if the movies take an older, darker turn.

Is this the first confirmation of approximate movie dates for the fourth and fifth films? Thanks very much to Geri for this tip!

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