'Harry Potter' Stars Turn Out for NYC Opening of Time Square Exhibition

6:48 PM PST 04/04/2011 by Georg Szalai
Jason Kempin/Getty Images
Robbie Coltrane, left, and Michael Gambon

The exhibit will let fans tour through Hogwarts and view props, costumes and sets from all eight movies in the franchise, including this summer's "Deathly Hallows Part 2."

NEW YORK -- Fans wanting to get up close and personal with Harry Potter will have a chance to do so starting Tuesday, when Harry Potter: The Exhibition opens here.

The exhibit at the Discovery Times Square building will feature props, costumes and sets from all eight of the movies in the franchise, starting with 2001's Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone through this summer's Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2.

The exhibit replicates Hogwarts, whereby attendees will get to walk through Hogwarts, including the Gryffindor common room and classrooms; get to throw a quaffle on a Quidditch pitch; see Hagrid's Hut; and confront Voldemort and the Death Eaters in the Forbidden Forest.

"When we first met with the filmmakers, we wanted to make sure everything was as authentic as possible," Eddie Newquist, an exhibition creator, told MTV News. "We decided to create an experience where you felt like you were going into Hogwarts. We also wanted to create an experience where you could get very close to a lot of the special costumes and things that maybe go by very quickly in the films but really have a lot of significant meaning."

Monday night's grand opening of the exhibition, which also served as the launch event for the home entertainment release of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1, was attended by producers David Heyman and David Baron and a range of cast members, but not the three protagonists (Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint).

Among the actors at the event were Michael Gambon (Albus Dumbledore), Robbie Coltrane (Hagrid), Bonnie Wright (Ginny Weasley), James and Oliver Phelps (the Weasley twins) and Evanna Lynch (Luna Lovegood).

Fans on Manhattan's 44th Street greeted their stars with loud cheers as they arrived, while classical music played inside as attendees enjoyed finger foods and drinks.

Attendees could even get a sneak peek at the exhibition and the audio tour, as well as the retail store at the exit of the exhibition, which features books, CDs and DVDs, wands, T-shirts and all sorts of other Potter merchandise.

After getting the chance to be sorted by the Sorting Hat into one of the Hogwarts houses in the first room of the exhibition, visitors can see a wide range of costumes, props and decorations.

The audio tour shares insights from people who worked on costumes and other aspects of the series, such as the fact that Radcliffe was allergic to the material in the pair of glasses he was originally supposed to wear in the films, but which left red marks on his face.

"We had quite a few problems just getting Harry's glasses right," one of costume experts explains in the audio tour.

 

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