Harry Potter is undoubtedly one of the most popular movie franchises of all time. Writer JK Rowling created a saga with immense substance, heart, and power that will connect with people for generations to come. And with their vibrant portrayals of Harry and Hermione, Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson created indelible imprints on pop culture.
Fans were sad to see the Harry Potter movie saga come to an end with "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2" in 2011, but still flocked to movie theaters with incredible force, cementing the film as the top July opening of all time!
To celebrate the box office record, which still stands today, and the fact it's been 20 (!) years since the original book came out, here are 20 fun facts about the Harry Potter franchise:
JK Rowling named the school "Hogwarts" after a plant that she saw in the Kew Gardens in New York.
Harry went through 160 pairs of glasses throughout the series.
The 't' at the end of Voldemort is silent.
Haley Joel Osment (The Sixth Sense) and Jonathan Lipnicki (Jerry Maguire) were considered for the part of Harry.
Shirley Henderson was 36 years old when she played the part of Moaning Myrtle.
Rowling's inspiration behind the Dementors was her own battle with depression.
JK Rowling turned down an official Harry Potter musical several times, but she brought Harry Potter and the Cursed Child to the stage in London in 2016.
Dumbledore is gay.
Ron Weasley swore a lot in the books, but his language was toned down in the movies, to appeal to young viewers.
The plants in the series come from a real 17th century book, titled "Culpeper's Complete Herbal."
JK Rowling is the first person in the United States to become a billionaire from writing books.
The least profitable film in the franchise (Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban) still made $90 million more than the most successful Twilight movie.
Director Alfonso Cuaron asked Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint to write essays about their characters, to get accustomed to the subject matter. True to form, Emma wrote a 16 page essay, Daniel wrote a one pager, and Rupert didn't even turn his in.
In the books, Harry's eyes are green. Daniel Radcliffe had a bad reaction to his contacts on set, so his character's eyes were changed to blue.
JK Rowling requested to have a British cast.
Many people believe that Ian McKellen took over when the original Dumbledore Richard Harris passed away, but Michael Gambon was his replacement. McKellan never appeared in a Harry Potter movie.
Alan Rickman wore black contacts to play Professor Snape.
The seven Harry Potter books have sold 500 million copies since the first book was released in 1997, making HP the best selling series of all time.
JK Rowling and Harry Potter have the same birthday, July 31st.
- Rupert Grint and Daniel Radcliffe have admitted that they had a crush on Emma Watson during the filming of the first few movies.