Harry Potter HBO Max TV Show Sparks More Backlash Against J.K. Rowling

JK Rowling

Yesterday, we saw the surprise announcement that Warner Bros. and HBO Max are developing a new live-action Harry Potter TV show. The story was broken by The Hollywood Reporter, who claimed that the studio is having “exploratory meetings” in order to figure out the format of the project. WB quickly released a statement saying “there are no Harry Potter series in development at the studio or on the streaming platform,” but the report is adamant that this is happening, stating that Warner Bros. see expanding the Wizarding World as a “top priority.”

That makes sense, too, especially as the Fantastic Beasts spinoff series is in a tight spot after the Depp controversy and the unexpected box office failure of the second instalment. But there’s an elephant in the room: creator J.K. Rowling’s reputation. Over 2020, the formerly beloved author alienated large portions of the Harry Potter fanbase with a series of transphobic statements, also causing many of the actors in the movies to criticize her.

Since then, her name has been mud online and diehard Potter fans greeted yesterday’s rumor with disdain, as you can see below:

It’s clear that Rowling has done serious damage to her image with her half-baked ramblings and I imagine Warner Bros. isn’t particularly happy that she’s single-handedly strangled the golden goose of the Wizarding World franchise and turned so many fans against it. As I see it, there are two ways forward on this.

One is for WB to distance themselves from the author and say she’ll have no involvement in the project (as the developers of the upcoming Hogwarts Legacy video game have done), though that may be contractually impossible. The other is to acknowledge that over twenty years they’ve had a good run, made billions of dollars, and that it’s time to put the Wizarding World on ice. Personally, I’ve got to agree with the fans on this one, as I’d have a tough time enjoying any new Harry Potter project after the crap Rowling spouted.