Warner Bros. Discovery chief David Zaslav is open to working on more Harry Potter movies with J.K. Rowling.
During Warner Bros. Discovery’s Q3 earnings call on Thursday, David Zaslav cited Harry Potter as one of the franchises he’s hoping to continue durind his tenure at the studio. The executive expressed his interest in reteaming with Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling for more Wizarding World projects following the release of this year’s Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore.
“We’re going to have a real focus on franchises,” David Zaslav explained. “We haven’t had a Superman movie in 13 years. We haven’t done a Harry Potter movie in 15 years. The DC movies and the Harry Potter movies provided a lot of the profits of Warner Bros. Motion Pictures over the last 25 years. So a focus on the franchise — one of the big advantages that we have, House of the Dragon is an example of that, Game of Thrones, taking advantage of Sex and the City, Lord of the Rings — we still have the right to do Lord of the Rings movies. What are the movies that have brands that are understood and loved everywhere in the world?”
Zaslav continued: “Outside the U.S., most in the aggregate, Europe, Latin America, Asia, have 40% of the theaters that we have here in the U.S. and there is local content. And so when you have a franchise movie, you can often make two to three times the amount of money that you make in the U.S., because you get a slot. And a focus on the big movies that are loved, that are tentpoled, that people are going to leave early from dinner to go to see — and we have a lot of them. Batman, Superman, Aquaman, if we can do something with J.K. [Rowling] on Harry Potter going forward, Lord of the Rings, what are we doing with Game of Thrones? What are we doing with a lot of the big franchises that we have? We’re focused on franchises.”
Can the Wizarding World recover?
Warner Bros. released eight Harry Potter movies between 2001 to 2011 and three Fantastic Beasts movies between 2016 to 2022, with the last one hitting theaters on the same day it completed its merger with Discovery. The eleven projects have collectively grossed over $9.6 billion at the worldwide box office, making J. K. Rowling’s Wizarding World one of the most successful franchises of all time.
However, Fantastic Beasts hasn’t been doing as well as Harry Potter, with the last movie, The Secrets of Dumbledore, earning $405.2 million worldwide, making it the lowest-grossing Wizarding World movie to date. Warner Bros. Discovery doesn’t have any Wizarding World projects in active development right now, as reported by Variety.
In the years since the release of the eight Harry Potter movies, J. K. Rowling has also become a controversial figure over a series of attacks towards the transgender community. Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint and other Wizarding World stars have spoken out against Rowling’s anti-trans views over the past few years.
Stay tuned for the latest news regarding the future of the Wizarding World franchise and make sure to stay tuned to our YouTube channel for more content!