Harry Potter is probably one of the most famous fantasy book protagonist of all times. This year marks the twenty-second anniversary of the Harry Potter books. Also, 31st July is the birth date of Harry Potter, making him 39 years old this year (yes, it’s true).
Here are some not-so-famous facts related to Harry Potter that is known to very few people around the world!
Only One Book
J. K. Rowling revealed in one of her earlier reviews that she only ever planned to write one book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. She did not have any plans to extend the book to a series of seven before the first book was published. The reason for this was she was unsure how the book will be received by the readers, or whether it will even sell, as she had already been rejected by several publishers.
This also means that the first book is a stand-alone complete story in itself. Harry Potter’s story of going to Hogwarts and defeating Voldemort was the only arc that was ever going to be if the first book hadn’t been such a huge success.
This may not come as a surprise to some, but Harry’s birthdate: July 31, is also the birthdate of his creator, J. K. Rowling herself. Rowling said that sharing a birthdate with a character she was writing about gave her a sense of contact and emotional attachment.
The Harry Potter timeline is different than what one would expect.
The first book of the Harry Potter series was released in 1997. In the book, Harry had just turned 11 and is admitted to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. But in reality, the year is not 1997. According to the book, the year is actually 1991. This means that all of the Harry Potter books are stories of not the current year of Harry in Hogwarts, but of six years before. By the time the first book came out, he would have been 17 and had defeated Voldemort, if he were real.
The timeline is, however, designed by fans by deriving hints and clues from dates and years mentioned in the books. However, in 2017, Rowling twitted that Albus Severus Potter, Harry’s son was about to leave for Hogwarts. This confirmed the fan built timeline.
Hermione and Harry
Disappointed about Ron and Hermione being the power couple?
Guess what! J. K. Rowling herself did not want that. She confessed that she wanted to pair the only lead female character, Hermione, with Harry. “I wanted them to be together too. Not doing so,” she told an online website, “is my biggest regret and blunder.”
Rowling wanted to kill Ron
Rowling, in one of her interviews, said that she almost broke her promise of keeping the golden trio of Harry, Hermione and Ron safe, and almost killed Ron halfway through the series because of tense situations in real life. She now believes that she wouldn’t really have been able to go through with it, but at the time she considered it “out of sheer spite.”
Alan Rickman knew about Snape-Lily relation
During the early days of Harry Potter movie filming, a period when books had not been finished, J. K. Rowling tipped Alan with a big secret.
Alan Rickman, the actor who played Severus Snape in Harry Potter series, was informed early on about Snape’s inclination towards Harry’s mother, Lily. Rowling herself revealed this fact to him. At that point, only two people in the entire world knew that Snape loved Lily. Even Rowling’s closest were unaware of this fact.
Rowling said that she revealed the secret to Rickman so that it was easy for him to develop his character in the way that when the big secret came out, it made sense. Rickman himself admitted it was a tedious job to keep the secret and perform, especially when even the directors were unaware.
J K Rowling’s earnings
J. K. Rowling’s first Harry Potter book became a boom in the literature world, but there were several publishers who were unimpressed by the book in the beginning. They refused to publish it thinking that the book would not sell. How stupid!
Even then, Rowling never gave up. She reached as many publishers as she could. Finally, in 1997, Bloomsbury, a small press in London that mostly published literary titles, agreed to take the book. However, they were unsure about it too, and Rowling was only paid $4,100 in advance.
After the book was launched, there was no looking back. The first two books of Harry Potter brought so much wealth to Rowling, that if she had saved them all for herself, she would have been the richest woman in England, even richer than Queen Elizabeth!! However, she donated most of her wealth for the welfare of women who had suffered domestic violence, which Rowling was herself a victim of.
J K Rowling’s real name
The author of the magical world of Harry Potter goes by a pen name. J. K. Rowling is not the author’s real name. Her real name is actually Joanne Rowling. Yup! You can google it.
While publishing the first Harry Potter book, Rowling thought that the book would be avoided because it was written by a woman. Sounds absurd now, but then, it was actually true. Statistics and study showed that most people, especially the targeted group of young boys, avoided books and novels written by a woman. This was because they believed women “put in unnecessary emotions in their writing.” Totally absurd, but that’s how it was then!
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