Tuesday, 13 June 2017

The Making of Harry Potter - Warner Bros Studio Tour in Leavesden

I finally made it!!! Ever since these studios opened I wanted to hot, but I never found the right people to go with. Mary is a big Harry Potter fan herself, so it kind of seemed obvious, even though she has already been once.

From Euston to Watford Junction and then with a Harry Potter bus to the studios in Leavesden. In the bus we were grated by Jason Isaac (not personally, unfortunately) and got so e instructions. We arrived at 5.30 pm, so we still had a little time before our 6pm time. We had dinner and then grabbed our digital guide. Then it was finally time! Even getting out of the bus and seeing the studios got me very excited already and then standing in line and seeing the cupboard under the stairs made the bufferflies all over.

We were then lead to a room full if small screens with the different photos, posters and movie posters from other countries. Then we went to the big cinema room, where we were shown a little movie about the studios. Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint introduced everything to us. Then the screen went up and revealed the entrence to the Great Hall. I didn't see very much with all these people in front of me, but it was still very imoressive and then we steppee into the Great Hall, this was very special and emotional for me. We kept at the back to take some pictures and take everything in, which the table, the chimney with the Hogwarts logo, the House robes, to the front with all the teachers, the house cup glasses and Dumbledore in the middle, just WOW.
There were a lot of young kids in our group, too young for my opinion, they don't even know the story (yet). We even witnessed a nappy change in the Great Hall 🙈🙈🙈.

Afterwards the actual tour began. In the beginning we listened to every audio guide track, but realised that we know most of the things, so we stopped after a while. The area afterwards contained so much. We see parts of the the Yule Ball set and costumes, all the wigs (Lucius Malfoy's might be my fave), all the educational decrees, the portraits and the stairs. We continued and saw all these amazing and unique wands and headed to the boy's dormitory. The beds are tiny and Rupert, Daniel and Co. still "slept" in them when they were older and had to squeeze themselves together. The fat lady was of course there right next to the mirror of Erised. Then there was the Gryffindor common room and it had so much detail like books, chocolate frog cards and more. There was the impressive clock we know from the Prisoner of Azkaban. We continued our tour to Dumbledore's office with the gargoyle entrance. I loved his office, there is so much detail in there, from stuff we know from the movies to the house crests on the cupboards, we spent a few minutes in there, it's just magical. There was a little area full of props, which was fab. We found the Triwizard cup and other fun things. The potions classroom was absolutely brilliant with things moving and so many ingredients. I loved the Quidditch area, we didn't stand in line to catch the broom coming up, but there was a game plane, the robes, the quarrel, the snitch etc. On to Hagrid's hut, where the chairs and other things were really bigger than actual chairs. Fang was there too. We skipped the green screens to fly on a broom and went on to all these moving objects like the Ford Anglia, brooms, the Whomping Willow and the doors to the chamber of secrets and a Gringotts vault, so great to see. Another one of my fave places was the Burrow. We saw other details like dark arts stuff, Malfoy Manor, the Black family tree, part of the Ministry of Magic and Umbridge's office. 

Then came the new part of the studios: The Forbidden Forest. There was Buckbean of course and we went on to a part with all the spiders. That was a bit creepy, because I hate spiders. I'm like Ron here ;). The next part I absolutely loved, because there were the Hogwarts trunks, platform 9 3/4 and the Hogwarts Express. Omg, it was amazing standing in front of it, I got all nervous and excited. Even though I already have a pic with the 9 3/4 sign I had to take another one. I also went into the train. I kind of felt a little trapped in there, but it was full of so many details and they also recreated the scene with Ron and Harry from the first movie. There was also a little store, with special railway stiff there. Mary bought a great pillow there, I loved it too, but it doesn't really match the rest of my home. Going on we found a showcase full of the Mina Lima art, but since we went to the House of Mina Lima on the same day, we didn't stay there for too long. 

Another highlight was approaching quickly, because I got to taste my first butter beer. I also got a souvenir cup and took the obligatory pictures of course. The foam was very sweet, but just like the whipped cream I like and the rest was sweet too, a bit like caramel. It's not my fave drink, but I'm happy I tried it! We then continued the outside part of the tour with the Knight Bus, Privet Drive, the Potter House and the famous bridge from the movies. The bridge at the studios is actually really small, which was very interesting too see. They can do so much in the movies. We also saw Sirius' bike, the chess figures and the Ford Anglia again. 

The tour continued inside, where everything was dedicated to visual effects. We didn't spend too much time there, because it was kind of creepy and I prefer the actual result in the movies. Afterwards came: DIAGON ALLEY!!! This was another highlight, seeing all the shops was amazing, especially Weasley's Wizard Wheezes! The atmosphere in that part of the studios is just breathtaking. Then we came to a part full of model of houses, buildings and more. On the way there were also some special pictures from the movies, which were taken from very special perspectives. 
Last but not least, there was HOGWARTS!!! So impressive and they actually used this for the bird's perspective of filming. 

Actually, Hogwarts was not the last thing. There was Ollivander's with so many wands. Each one had a different name on, one of a Harry Potter actor, so all there names were there somewhere. We found Bonnie Wright :). 

In the end we spent a lot of time in the shop and I bough quiet a lot, which I'm very excited about. 

I'm over the moon that I finally made it to the studios, it was an absolute dream come true and I want to go back already and discover more details. I really need to rematch all the movies now!!!

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