Why I will not be watching “Return to Hogwarts” anytime soon


Photo provided by: Warner Bros; Polygon

The main three cast members, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson and Daniel Radcliffe, reminisce about their time working on the film series.

On Jan. 1, 2022, HBO released the film “Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts”. Since it has been 20 years since the release of the first Harry Potter movie, cast members decided to get together and reminisce about their time filming the series.
I have been a fan of the Harry Potter franchise since second grade. My mom and I read the first book together, and then over the next two years or so, I finished the other six. I have seen all of the movies, and own nearly all of them on DVD. I had a robe and a wand, and I read “Cursed Child” when it came out. And yet, I will not be watching “Return to Hogwarts” anytime soon.
I have an incredible amount of respect for J.K. Rowling’s achievements. She wrote one of the most popular children’s book series of all time, and even when it was denied by over a dozen publishing companies, she believed in herself and her work and kept pushing. In the process she raised a child by herself, relying on government benefits as well. She also struggled with depression, which inspired the Dementors in later books. While I have respect for what she was able to do while under that pressure, I do not respect Rowling herself.

Rowling has said incredibly hurtful and transphobic things, both to a large percentage of her fan base and to those outside it. When this was pointed out to her, she refused to apologize, and instead doubled down on her views, saying that only those who have wombs are women. Because of this, many consider her a trans-exclusionary radical feminist, or TERF. Even key members of the cast voiced their opinion on the matter, and still, she maintained her stance. It can be good sometimes, but not when those opinions alienate and invalidate members of a creator’s fan base and other humans in general.
Every time something gets published or created within the Harry Potter franchise, she gets royalties from it. “Cursed Child”, an otherwise non-canon conforming work, would never have been made into canon if she had not approved it to be sold within the franchise, which she only did for the money. I am not interested in giving Rowling any of my attention, time or money going forward.

Am I curious as to what was said in the special? Yes, but I can read articles on it. My life will not be incredibly benefited by watching it, nor will it be any the worse for not. I do not feel the need to push my belief about J.K. Rowling onto others, but I do feel the need to bring attention to just how another Harry Potter movie needlessly puts money in her pockets.

Will you be watching "Return to Hogwarts"?


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