Harry Potter Premiere at Trafalgar Square

Platform 9 3/4

July 2011

The final movie installment of the Harry Potter books has seen Harry and co not only outgrow their capes, but Leicester Square, too.

The Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II premiere offered mere muggles the chance to see some of their magical heroes, and organisers feared Leicester Square wouldn’t be able to cope. With an all-star British cast including Alan Rickman, Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Helena Boham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Ralph Fiennes and Sir Ian Mckellen – the crowds were set to be huge.

In anticipation of the crowds, viewing areas were restricted to ‘wristband’ only. Though free of charge, the wristbands were allocated one per person and on a strictly first come first served basis. This tactic saw die-hard Potter fans camp out in Trafalgar Square since Monday 5th July – 3 days before the premier – braving both the rain and heat of British summer.

The final battle between Harry and Voldemort was the most anticipated screen event of the year, but other battles taking place off screen had also been making headlines.

Daniel Radcliffe’s drinking problem

Alan Rickman

This admission was revealed by the star in a candid interview with GQ magazine. The Harry Potter actor admitted that he had been tee-total since 2010, after his drinking habit during the filming of Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince scared him into thinking he was fast becoming an alcoholic. He was quoted as saying, “I became reliant on alcohol to enjoy stuff.”

Revealing that he had been temporarily led astray by the Hollywood lifestyle, Radcliffe’s admission was not a complete surprise to some. Quiet whisperings had been heard that he was being influenced by his ‘secret girlfriend’ Olive Uniacke - a former wild child and step daughter of Harry Potter producer David Heyman.

One person who was rocked by this revelation was Radcliffe’s co-star, Hermione Granger actress Emma Watson. A close friend of Radcliffe’s, Watson confessed her ignorance on the matter on the David Letterman show in the US. She stated that he had always been professional and that as far as she knew, Radcliffe had never taken a sick day. Perhaps the Harry Potter star picked up a spell or two after all those years at Hogwarts.

More Premieres?

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II was the first red carpet movie event to take place in Trafalgar Square and considered a success. The popular London sightseeing attraction could become a regular host of world premieres.

London Mayor Boris Johnson said, “As befits a great British triumph, I can think of no better venue than the iconic surroundings of Trafalgar Square in which to stage the most spectacular of send-offs for this dramatic finale.”

Harry Potter fan? Why not go on the Harry Potter Walking Tour of London.