Daniel Radcliffe and 'Harry Potter' Friends Celebrate Franchise at Luncheon in New York (Video)

This afternoon, Warner Brothers hosted a Peggy Siegal luncheon at New York's fabled 21 Club in celebration of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2, the eighth and final installment of the decade-spanning film franchise that has collectively grossed over $7.7 billion at box-offices around the world and single-handedly revived the faltering British film industry.

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Though the franchise's first seven installments received only scattered Oscar nods in technical categories -- art direction/set direction (#1, #4, #7), cinematography, (6), costume design (#1), original score (#1, #3), and visual effects (#3, #7) -- the final one is considered to have a long but not impossible shot of cracking into the best picture category itself, perhaps as part of a Lord of the Rings-like tribute. (As you may recall, the third and final installment of that epic franchise was not only nominated for but won the best picture Oscar.)

Attendees at today's event included the actors Daniel Radcliffe and Alan Rickman, who in all eight films played the title character and villainous Severus Snape, respectively; the director David Yates, who helmed the four most recent installments (Chris Columbus did #1 and #2, Alfonso Cuaron did #3, and Mike Newell did #4); and the producer David Heyman, who purchased the rights to J.K. Rowling's novels a decade ago and has guided the film franchise ever since.

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THR exclusively captured footage of remarks of gratitude that were made by Heyman and Yates to the attendees of the event. You can watch them at the top of the post or read them here...

Heyman transcription...
"Over the course of the, I guess, 10 years that we've been making these films, we became a family. You know, Dan, Alan -- so many of these people -- worked on all eight films, and it was just the most wonderful odyssey. And now that it's over, it's a little weird -- you know, that family's all gone its own way -- but those 10 years are filled with the most fantastic memories. And I've had the pleasure of working with some great directors, but none greater than David Yates, who really had the daunting challenge of not just directing one film but directing four films -- he's still on holiday, by the way. He also brought the series to a conclusion in such a perfect way that I really think did justice to Jo Rowling's magnificent books. The fact is that none of us would be here were it not for Jo, and I know that she feels really proud of this film -- she's a producer on it. She feels incredibly proud of it. And I thank you all for being here to support us and to support it."

Yates transcription...
"There's very little to add other than to say thank you for being here. It has been an incredible journey -- I've only been along for half of it, and it just feels strange coming back. We finished the movie about four months ago, and after the promotions and the premieres we felt we'd, kind of, left it behind. But it's wonderful to be back and just talking about it, because we are very proud of the last film. There was huge expectation and anticipation, and an enormous amount of pressure, because this material and these books mean so much to so many people around the world, and we carried that responsibility around with us. We did a DVD launch a week ago in Orlando, and we met many of these young fans, and they were all really wonderful, and the thing they kept saying to us was, 'Thank you,' which was really, really touching. So we left it behind in July, but we're coming back to see it again now. Thank you for being here and supporting the film. We very much appreciate it."