On the occasion of the 20 years of the “Harry Potter” saga, Chris Columbus shared some memories, focusing in particular on the pressure felt when he was chosen to produce the first part of the magical saga.
Watch out, getting old: the Harry Potter saga is celebrating its 20th anniversary! On this occasion, the American director Chris Columbus granted an interview with Variety in which he talks about his memories at Hogwarts. Among them, the not very pleasant one of the very great pressure felt when making Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, the first cinematographic installment of the magical saga.
“I expected to be fired in the first two weeks of filming”, recalls Chris Columbus. “I was, I don’t mean anxious, but very conscious of the fact that if I screwed up, I probably would never work again.”
“I knew who if I screwed it up, I would have millions of angry fans on my doorstep”, continues the filmmaker. “I knew I was tackling something huge. I had never been involved in a project that was so observed, scrutinized.” It just goes to show that you may have had significant experience having written cult screenplays (Gremlins, The Goonies) and made films that are no less so (Mum, I missed the plane, Madame Doubtfire), the pressure can always catch up with you.
During the same interview, Chris Columbus says that it was an interview of nearly three hours with JK Rowling that validated his hiring as director of Harry Potter and the sorcerer’s stone. And, there again, we feel that the American has felt a little the weight of all Hogwarts on his shoulders.
“When I was chosen, it was a moment of pure elation, quickly followed by pure panic”, he says. “I knew I had to make a movie that not only had to appeal to the fans but also to myself, because I was a fan myself. It’s thinking about that that made me realize the first Harry Potter. I figured I had to do it for myself, I didn’t think about the billions of eyes that would watch the movie when it was released. “
Chris Columbus finally enjoyed the experience. The director will sign in the wake of Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets, the second opus of the franchise, then officiate as producer on the third film, The Prisoner of Azkaban.
Harry Potter: the mistakes and mistakes of the first two films, directed by Chris Columbus