The Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts reunion special is now streaming on HBO Max. It’s mostly a warm and affectionate tribute to the Potter film series, which debuted with Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone in 2001. Much of the surviving franchise cast appears, including Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Ralph Fiennes, Jason Isaacs, Gary Oldman, Tom Felton, James Phelps, Oliver Phelps, Mark Williams, Bonnie Wright, Alfred Enoch, Ian Hart, Toby Jones, and the three key stars, Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, and Emma Watson.

It’s Watson who revealed probably the most newsworthy moment of the special, which is otherwise just a lot of the cast and creators raving about each other along with vintage Harry Potter behind-the-scenes footage. During one of her conversations with Radcliffe and Grint, she says she actually considered quitting the series while it was still going on.

That moment happened before production began on 2007’s Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, the fifth movie in the saga. The film’s director, David Yates, says in one of his interviews that when he took the job (his first with the franchise) he was warned that Watson was not sure she wanted to make four more Harry Potter movies.

Here is what Watson says of that period:

I did find a diary entry that was kind of like ... I could see that, at times, I was lonely. I think I was scared. I don’t know if you ever felt like it got to a tipping point when you were like, ‘This is kind of forever now ... the fame thing had finally hit home in a big way.

Despite her misgivings, Watson also claims that no one had to “convince” her to stick around. She credited her decision to see the series through to the fans, who she said “genuinely wanted us to succeed, and we all genuinely had each other’s backs.” To which my response was ... would fans in 2021 be so nice? And if these movies were being made now, would that have affected Watson’s decision in a different way? Just something to think about...

Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts is now streaming on HBO Max, along with the entire Harry Potter movie franchise.

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