— Hagrid, Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
Starting in 2001 and finishing in 2011, each of the seven main Harry Potter books was put to film. The films star Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter, Rupert Grint as Ron Weasley, and Emma Watson as Hermione Granger. The entire series (which has taken a higher aggregate box-office gross than any other series in the same medium) spans eight movies; the seventh book, Deathly Hallows, was split into two separate films in an attempt to encompass as much of the final book's content as possible (in contrast to the rushed scenes of the largest book, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, for example).The first two films, directed by Chris Columbus, place more emphasis on plot than characterization, with most scenes being identical to their counterparts in the books, and are generally regarded as solid but workmanlike. Columbus was succeeded by Alfonso Cuaron, who decided to reverse this and created what is likely the most controversial movie in the series. His Prisoner of Azkaban is either an artistic triumph or a lot of wangsting with a plot incomprehensible to anyone who hasn't read the book (or both). Mike Newell came next, following more-or-less in Cuar๓n's footsteps, but with a larger eye for spectacle and adventure. As Goblet of Fire was when J. K. Rowling started writing Door Stoppers, the movie version received attention mostly for how much stuff got left out. British TV director David Yates followed, helming Order of the Phoenix and all subsequent films, combining the Cuar๓n and Newell approaches in terms of style, while embracing the increasingly dark and grim tone of the later novels.The Harry Potter fandom is rather sharply divided over whether the earlier films directed by Columbus, or the character-driven films which followed, are better; it basically comes down to how important certain subplots and plot points are, and whether the latter films are really exploring the characters or just indulging in angst. Critics are less divided, holding all of the later films in higher regard than the Columbus films. Although the Columbus films feels more faithful to the books and has the least amount of plot holes. This being said, all of the films have been overall critical successes (the lowest mark on rottentomatoes.com being a 78, the lowest on Metacritic being a 63).The first five films were made and released as the final three books were being written. The film of Philosopher's Stone came out a year after the book Goblet of Fire was published. The final book in the series, Deathly Hallows, was published one week before the film Order of the Phoenix was released in theaters, making it the first film where the viewers watched knowing how the story ended. Some have wondered if the book of Deathly Hallows was rushed in writing due to Rowling trying to get it finished in time for the movie companies to start working on a screenplay; movies requiring more time in preproduction and actors wanting to know if they will be in the final movie or not before taking other jobs.Harry Potter is the most financially succesfully film series of all time. The eight films have earned a combined 7.7 billion dollars in revenue falling just shy of a billion dollars per film.On September 12, 2013, Warner Bros. announced that they were developing a new spin-off movie set in the Harry Potter universe based on the Defictionalized book Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The film will be scripted by J.K Rowling, her first screenplay, and will be set 70 years before Harry's first year, revolving around the book's author, Newt Scamander. The fandom, predictably, exploded.Discussion has been going on among fans about the possibility of remakes in the future. Time will tell.Warning: High chance of unmarked spoilers!
Ability over Appearance: The actors were frequently cast this way. Horace Slughorn, Dolores Umbridge and Gilderoy Lockhart were all played by actors who didn't quite match the physical description of their book counterparts (for instance, Slughorn is meant to be short and stout, but Jim Broadbent is over six feet tall), but who had the attitude down perfectly.
Warwick Davis plays Flitwick throughout the series (with a different look in the earlier films), the goblin bank teller in Stone, and is also Griphook in Deathly Hallows. Additionally, Flitwick's new look was originally meant to be a separate character. Basically, they cast Warwick Davis whenever they need someone very short.
Dudley Dursley is played by Harry Melling. There is a brief moment in the first film, which was not in the book, in which Hagrid mistakes Dudley for Harry, to which Dudley responds that he's "not Harry."
Ralph Fiennes is playing a bigoted, sociopathic, totalitarian psychopath with zero compassion or humanity and who commands/leads an influential racist cult in a war-torn, politically unstable world... now, are we talking about Lord Voldemort or Amon Goeth? Notable given that the latter was Fiennes' big break in the film-making business.
Look at Dumbledore's death in The Half-Blood Prince (3:00) and Hans Gruber's death in Die Hard (2:45). Nicely inverted, as the killed in one is the killer in the other.
In Deathly Hallows Part 1, the Power Trio ends up in a caf้ that has a promotional poster for Equus on the wall.
In the Half-blood Prince book, Slughorn mistakes Ron's name for Rupert, in reference to the fact that Ron Weasley is played by Rupert Grint in the films.
Adaptational Attractiveness: Pretty much everyone — most characters are given intentionally unattractive descriptions in the books but are played by considerably more good-looking actors.
Most notably Hermione. She had large buck teeth until she had some magic dental work done in Goblet of Fire; the films skip this detail entirely. Her hair also becomes less of a bushy mane after the first two films.
In the earlier films, when she's not intended to be pretty, that may be because the books are from Harry's POV and he doesn't actually take much notice of her looks beyond hair and eye color until he sees her gussied up at the Yule Ball (in Goblet of Fire).
Snape is never portrayed with the sallow skin and greasy hair that he has in the books. Some of the illustrations for the earlier books also give him a very ugly beard, and others give him unsightly stubble, neither of which he has in the movies.
Neville: In the books he's a meek, chubby foil to Dudley, and then his actor lost his light hair and all his baby fat and gained about three feet in height; in the words of Emperor Kuzco, he has become a "hottie hot hottie!"
Bellatrix, who in the books had lost her beauty after years in Azkaban prison, is played by Helena Bonham-Carter in the movies, and looking pretty damn good... except for her teeth.
Luna goes from somewhat plain and having slightly bugged-out eyes to quite attractive in the book to film transition.
Dudley, while quite tubby in the first few films (he's actually the largest he ever gets in the third film), seems to be merely stocky by the time the fifth movie rolls around (admittedly this happens in the book as well, as Dudley takes up boxing and becomes more muscular than fat). Harry Melling, the actor who portrays him, actually lost a great deal of weight in between the shooting of the fifth and seventh films (the Dursleys were left out of the sixth film entirely). According to interviews with the actor, the producers nearly died of shock when he showed up for filming a good seventy pounds lighter (likely more than they were envisioning for Dudley). Fortunately for him, instead of recasting, they stuffed him into a fat suit. Unfortunately, the effect wasn't quite what they wanted, and ultimately his scene with Harry at the beginning of Deathly Hallows Part 1 was cut.
Pansy Parkinson, in the books, is described as having "a face like a pug," but in the movies she's not too bad-looking. Then again, she's being described by Gryffindors, so maybe that's a jaundiced account.
While Mad-Eye Moody is not attractive by any means, he is certainly not nearly as ugly as he is in the books.
Bill Weasley, in book 6 Half-Blood Prince, is scarred to the point of being described as only slightly less mangled looking than Mad-Eye Moody, but in the film only has slight scratches on his face. (Note: In the films, Mad-Eye Moody and Bill Weasley is played respectively by father and son Brendan Gleeson and Domhnall Gleeson, so the comparison comes as propriate.)
Adaptational Badass: The films are slightly more action-packed than the books, and the main characters tend to be able to hold their own against adult wizards.
In particular, Harry is able to hold his own during a protracted duel with Voldemort during the climax of the eighth film. Such a feat would be completely beyond him in the books, where Voldemort held off multiple veteran wizards simultaneously.
Somehow, even Dumbledore gets upgraded some in the sixth film. In the book, the ring of fire he summoned was barely big enough to circle both him and Harry and had to move with them as they moved within the tiny island. In the film, its a spectacular firestorm raging through the entire cave.
Hermione benefits from this as well, as early as Chamber of Secrets. In the book, after Lockhart releases the cage full of pixies, Hermione is shown recapturing two or three of them at a time by using "a clever freezing charm". In the movie, once Lockhart flees, Hermione takes out the entire classroom full of pixies with a single spell. She also seems to be able to fly a broom as well as Harry and Ron, as seen in Deathly Hallows Part 2, when in the books she's an atrocious flyer.
Ginny in Film 8. Before Molly takes over in the book, Bellatrix is seen duelling Ginny, Luna, and Hermione at the same time. In the films, Ron and Hermione are busy with the snake and Luna is otherwise indisposed. Thus Ginny is trying to hold off Voldemort's second-in-command alone. Maybe her dad, who was in the background, was helping her (which would count as this trope as well), but George seemed to have his back turned, only turning around when he hears the noise from Ginny nearly getting fried.
Hell, Non-verbal magic. In the books, this is difficult to do at all, and requires much practice and mental discipline (and wasn't even taught until the sixth year)... in the films - especially the later ones - virtually everyone throws these around just as regularly as the spoken versions, if not more so.
Happens inadvertently to Narcissa Malfoy. The films keep her worrying for her son's life and betraying Voldemort at the end but leave out scenes showing her haughty racism and general Rich Bitch attitude before her Heel-Face Turn.
Although Rufus Scrimgeour was never a villain, in books six and seven he's treated as something of an opportunistic antagonist who really only wants to work with Harry to make himself look good. In the film series he's introduced briefly in the seventh movie, where he cryptically tells Harry and the gang that he doesn't know what they're up to, but that they can't fight Voldemort alone. And then he dies off-screen.
In the books, Severus Snape is a Jerkass, plain and simple. In the movies, he's still unpleasant, but has a few Pet the Dog monets, such as shielding Harry, Ron and Hermione, the 3 students he despises from werewolf!Lupin, putting his own life at risk in the process.
Unlike his counterpart in the books, who was definitely under the Imperius Curse, Pius Thicknesse is implied to have joined the Death Eaters and Voldemort of his free will.
He seems very tense compared to the other Death Eaters in the room, most noticeably when Nagini is slithering by his feet. It can be inferred that he may have been coerced into cooperating against his will, while not actually being under the Imperius Curse.
In the books, Grindelwald and Dumbledore were childhood friends (and maybe lovers), and Grindelwald redeems himself by lying to Voldemort about the Elder Wand. In the movie, basically all of that subplot is cut out, and so is his lying to Voldemort.
Adaptational Wimp: The films have been accused of doing this to Ron. For example, in the first book, Ron and Harry are trapped by a monstrous plant, and Hermione has to save them; she panics so much that she forgets about her powers, and Ron is the one to angrily remind her what she can do. In the film Ron almost dies because he panics, and Hermione basically figures out how to save him herself, all while acting relatively calm.
Order of the Phoenix keeps the plot point that no-one believes Harry about Voldemort, since that is part of the Anthropic Principle for that particular book. But, because some points were edited out of Goblet of Fire and never reinstated, viewers never know why no-one believes him beyond Fudge's complete denial of the facts and using Sirius as The Scapegoat.
The Fidelius charm is never introduced in the films, so certain things go unexplained.
A scene explaining the Taboo (Ron mentions hearing about it in the Ministry) was cut from Deathly Hallows Part 1, so it's never explained despite its effects showing up in two plot-critical moments (the book-verbatim Death Eater attack in the caf้, and a new change to the Lovegood house scene where Xenophilius says Voldemort's name to summon Death Eaters), making them seem like Diabolus ex Machina rather than a jinx. It also saves the writers some trouble, because through the movies they have been downright spotty about wizards saying Voldemort's name, a feature which was important in the books.
Fudge is never shown to be directly dismissed. The Minister of Magic makes no appearance in the sixth movie and the seventh just puts a new Minister in office without explanation, except for the small fact that one of the headlines seen at the end of the fifth film reads "Minister to resign?◊".
The reason why Harry doesn't realize Bathilda Bagshot is possessed by Nagini in the seventh film is because he is a Parselmouth — snake-talk appears to him as human speech, unlike the gibberish it is to others. In the movie, we hear him and possessed Bathilda talk in Parseltongue from an observer's viewpoint.
The material is re-introduced in several ways in Hallows Part 2: merely knowing that Bellatrix was afraid of what they might have taken from her vault lets him know a Horcrux is there, and once they get inside, Harry's scar gives him a Spider-Sense, letting him track down the object in question (a cup, theoretically Helga Hufflepuff's but maybe anybody's). This same ability allows him to learn that Nagini is a Horcrux, and another is connected to Rowena Ravenclaw, and later to sense the presence of the diadem in the Room of Requirement, hidden in a velvet jewel box instead of sitting on a warlock statue.
Dumbledore is set up over the course of parts one and two as being not as kind and fatherly as he appeared. Now, in the book, all of this finally comes together and Dumbledore is revealed to still have been a good man who in the end essentially arranges Voldemort's downfall. But in the movie, most of his conversation with Harry at King's Cross is cut, and the subplot is left dangling. (Conversely, most of the explicit references to Dumbledore's dark side, such as his brief alliance with Grindelwald and his complicity in the death of his sister, don't get a mention either, so all that's left are a few vague hints of wrongdoing.)
Remus and Tonks in a blink-and-you-miss-it scene in Deathly Hallows Part 1: Tonks is apparently about to announce her pregnancy too, but is interrupted. Their relationship is not mentioned again, until the resurrection stone scene when Harry is magically aware of Teddy's existence.
Any scene pertaining to the introduction of the two-way mirrors is left out, leaving it to turn up apparently randomly at various points in the last few films. Its function is given an "explanation" in Deathly Hallows Part 2, but you are never told why Harry has it.
In the sixth film, Malfoys entire year of planning is shown to be pointless at the end of the film. The death eaters merely show up and stand there doing nothing, while in the book it was imperative that the death eaters enter Hogwarts in order to hold off all of the members of the Order of the Phoenix guarding Hogwarts while Draco could finish his job (there would have been an amazing battle scene as a result). In the film the battle doesn't happen and the death eaters just walk out...
In the sixth film Draco disarms Dumbledore. This is a key moment in the series that is revealed to be the only part of Dumbledore's master plan that went wrong, yet Dumbledore just lets himself be disarmed without defending himself. In the book the only reason he was disarmed is because he sacrificed his chance to defend himself to immobilize Harry who was wearing his invisibility cloak. Kind of makes Dumbledore seem like a total idiot...
In the third movie, after Harry falls off his broom in the Quidditch match. In the book (and the video game), Harry sees a black dog that he believes to be the Grim watching him from some empty seats. In the film, Harry inexplicably instead sees the outlines of the Grim appear in the sky. This would theoretically make sense if the Grim he had been spotting before was really a mystical omen of death and not the Animagus form of Sirius Black, as we later find out.
Averted by J.K. Rowling herself, who stepped in after learning the fifth film would be cutting out the character Kreacher, and warned the crew that adapting book seven would be very problematic if he hadn't appeared before. However, so much of his parts were cut from Deathly Hallows Part 1 and completely cut from Part 2 they might as well have cut him out completely.
The third movie never mentions who Messrs. Moony, Wormtail, Padfoot, and Prongs are. This caused confusion among some audience members during the fifth movie when Harry wrote a letter to "Padfoot" without mentioning his given name. Plus Pettigrew being referred to exclusively as "Wormtail" in film four. And it's now a mystery how Lupin knows how the map works.
The final movie removes Dumbledore's explanation of why Voldemort's Killing Curse in the forest failed to work on Harry, leaving his survival (and why it had to be Voldemort himself who cast the curse) a mystery with no "movie-canon" explanation. While it does explicitly explain why the Elder Wand wouldn't work properly for Voldemort in the film (and the failure of the Killing Curse could be explained simply by that), and InfoDumpledore also mentions that Voldemort's Soul Fragment is now gone, (implying it might have served as Plot Armor), a question mark is still left behind on the completeness of the answer compared with the book's. (Then again YMMV on whether or not adding "And Voldemort's got your blood in him which means you're still protecting by your mother's sacrifice" really adds anything to the explanation: JK Rowling herself stated that Harry's survival has as much to do with personal choice as the mechanics involved.)
Krum has Mind-Control Eyes while under the Imperius Curse in the fourth film. In the seventh film, the curse is portrayed more like in the book; the Gringotts goblin just has a vacant smile. This could be Handwave'd by the fact that it was Harry who put the goblin under the curse, and he doesn't have as much experience at casting it, so it can't exert as much control on someone as Crouch did.
In Book 6, the Prime Minister and the Minister for Magic briefly discuss a terrorist attack by Death Eaters against an unnamed bridge that kills several Muggles. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince decides to Show, Don't Tell the attack, setting it in London's famous Millennium Bridge for added drama and Monumental Damage... forgetting that the scene is supposed to take place in mid-1997, whereas construction on the real-life Millennium Bridge began in 1998 and it wasn't opened to the public until 2000.
Bill Nighy claimed he was excited to be playing Rufus Scrimgeour in the last movie because, if he hadn't, he would've been the only actor in Great Britain not to have shown up in the series at some point. Indeed, it is almost easier to note the British actors who have not appeared in the film.
As one reviewer noted, between all the supporting actors, you'd have a great production of Macbeth.
When making the first film, Columbus commented, "I put together a list of my dream cast. And every one of them said 'Yes.' That never happens."
Arc Number: When Prizoner of Azkaban came out, Rowling said she was surprised at a few parts of the film which unknowingly foreshadowed future books. In retrospect, one was staring us in the face - POA established player numbers in quiddich, and Harry's was 7. We wouldn't be learning about horcruxes until the book of Half Blood Prince came out year after the film of Prisoner came out, and another three years until we learned that Harry was the seventh horcrux. So while it wasn't really an arc number in the books, it was in the films.
From Half-Blood Prince onward, the character of Blaise Zabini takes over Goyle's role, while Goyle takes Crabbe's, because of the actor playing Crabbe's troubles with the law.
Ginny zig-zags through this depending on what film it is. She has one scene in the first film, is a big part of the plot of the second, has two scenes in the third, gets a lot more screen-time in the fourth, is featured but has few lines and a Meaningful Background Event in the fifth, is a big part of the sixth, and Demoted to Extra again in the seventh and then is pretty important in eight.
Scabior receives more screen time in the 7th film then he does in the books with him just appearing in the two scenes in the book while in the movie he appears as early as the first Malfoy Manor scene. Plus the film seems to treat him as a Death Eater rather then a snatcher that he is in the book
Ash Face: Seamus Finnigan seems to be subjected to this an awful lot. It's even lampshaded in the final film.
Author Appeal: Screenwriter Steve Kloves' favorite character is Hermione. Guess which character gets a lot more feature time.
Hermione: Do you ever stop eating? Ron:(his mouth full) What? I'm hungry!
Also Crabbe and Goyle, as of Chamber of Secrets
(Crabbe and Goyle waddle down Great Hall, each carrying a huge pile of sweets) Harry:(whispering, to Ron) You ready? Ron:(whispering) Yeah. (Clears throat) Wingardiu— Harry:(cutting Ron off) You know what? Better let me do it. Ron: Uhh... right. (the scene then cuts to the Great Hall, where a pair of cupcakes start to rise and hover above the ground as Crabbe and Goyle walk closer. Crabbe notices the cupcakes, and, still holding the wad of food, takes them out of the air and hands one to Goyle. The two each take a bite, chewing for a few seconds before falling back on the floor, unconscious) Ron:(with a grimace) How thick can you get?
Body Horror: In a departure from the books, every time a Horcrux is destroyed, Voldemort is weakened. He realizes what's going on after the Cup has been destroyed — and once he's only left with two anchors to keep him alive, his body starts necrotizing...
Whatever in the hellMolly did to Bellatrix when she killed her.
Lupin's werewolf transformation is quite painful to look at. It's pretty accurate to the real werewolf transformation in mythology. At least Rowling did her homework.
A musical variation: The ending of Deathly Hallows Part 2 plays the exact same music that the first film ended with.
Harry's life with the Dursleys: when he was 1, Hagrid brought him to the Dursleys riding Sirius' bike. When he leaves the Dursleys, it is Hagrid who takes Harry... riding Sirius' bike. Hagrid even mentions this.
Also in Chamber, when the Weasleys save Harry from the Dursleys, Harry asks why they're there and Ron replies "rescuing you, of course." When the Order saves Harry from the Dursleys in Order, Moody says the same thing.
Harry says "You're lying, Dolores... and you mustn't tell lies!" in Deathly Hallows Part 2, calling back to a similar scene in Order of the Phoenix.
The toy knights that Harry played with in the first film are still there seven years later.
A running gag is Seamus's tendency to set things on fire or make something explode, such as somehow adding an ingredient to make a supposed Draught of the Living Death explode in the sixth film. In the final film, Professor McGonagall suggests enlisting him to set up explosives because of this.
In the third film, before Sirius departs on Buckbeak he rests a hand over Harry's heart, saying that's where their loved ones could always be found. In the eighth, when Harry is using the Resurrection Stone, Harry asks his lost loved ones whether they'd be able to be seen by Voldemort — to which Sirius responds "No. We're here, you see", pointing to Harry's heart.
In the eighth film, when Harry is in the Room of Requirement trying to get a hold of Ravenclaw's Diadem, he climbs a mountain of stuff and accidentally knocks over a small cage. A second later, Cornish pixies, who were last seen in Professor Lockhart's classroom in movie two, are flying in every direction.
Rupert Grint had a trademark grimace he used often in the first two films. Then his acting abilities matured and we didn't see it. However in the scene in movie 8 when he's yelling at Harry and Hermione to run from the feindfyre he's making that face.
The scene in Deathly Hallows Part 2 where Albus Severus enters platform 9 3/4 is almost identical to the scene of Harry entering the platform in Philosopher's Stone.
Chris Columbus cast his own children in various nonspeaking background roles. Most famously, his daughter Eleanor is Susan Bones, who is seen in nearly every crowd scene in the first two films. And then, of course, disappears for the rest of the series. (Amusingly, Susan is a slight Chekhov's Gunman character in the books and she ends up having a small role late in the series, although one minor enough that the film versions probably would have cut it anyway. Her name does appear on the list of D.A. members in the fifth movie, however. The video game version of Phoenix includes Susan, voiced by a British actress, but physically resembling an older version of the character Eleanor Columbus played.)
In the third film, there's a portrait of a mother and a baby next to the Fat Lady's portrait. That's Alfonso Cuar๓n's wife (at the time; they are now divorced) and their then-newborn baby.
Ian Brown, of 90s britpop band The Stone Roses fame, appears for a brief moment in Prisoner of Azkaban, magically stirring his drink in the Leaky Cauldron.
Jarvis Cocker appears as the frontman to The Weird Sisters in Goblet of Fire.
The first time Harry sees Sirius, Harry thinks that his gaunt appearance makes him look like a vampire. In the film version of Prisoner of Azkaban, Sirius is played by Gary Oldman, who played the most famous vampire ever in Bram Stoker's Dracula.
In Half-Blood Prince, Rufus Scrigmeour is (according to Luna, who read it in The Quibbler) is actually a vampire. In the film version of Deathly Hallows, Scrigemeour is played by Bill Nighy, who played vampire clan leader Viktor in the Underworld trilogy.
Post-werewolf attack (Book 6), Bill Weasley is said in the book to bear "a distinct resemblance to Mad-Eye [Moody]." Enter Film 7, where Bill finally makes an appearance. He is played by Domnhall Gleeson, the son of Mad-Eye's actor Brendan Gleeson.
Camp Unsafe Isn't Safe Anymore: This is said of Hogwarts in three separate films, starting in Chamber of Secrets. In Half-Blood Prince, Harry says it.
Regulus Black is mentioned casually as one of Slughorn's favorites in the sixth film.
Mafalda and Runcorn appear briefly in the seventh film before they are actually needed. Runcorn is seen with Umbridge and Thicknesse when the Ministry is taken over, and Mafalda is shown on a newspaper with Umbridge. Even better, Mafalda was the one who sent the letters to Harry after Dobby framed him for using magic outside of school in front of Muggles in the second movie.
Daniel Radcliffe in Half-Blood Prince. During the entire Felix Felicis scene, Dan proceeds to eat as much scenery as he can.
In the same movie, Ron after accidentally drinking a love potion. (Notice how both scenes are "under the influence"?)
Chuck Cunningham Syndrome: Madam Hooch after Philosopher's Stone, Colin Creevey after Chamber of Secrets, Buckbeak after Prisoner of Azkaban, the unnamed child that showed up just to be whacked on the top of the head by Goyle after Goblet of Fire, Nearly Headless Nick after Chamber of Secrets, The Fat Lady after Prisoner of Azkaban, Moaning Myrtle after Goblet of Fire, Grawp after Order of the Phoenix... one really wonders how Hogwarts can let all these disappearances go unchecked with all the high-intensity security measures it has taken over the course of the series.
In Colin's case, this was due to his actor, Hugh Mitchell, going through an impressive growth spurt, to the point where the filmmakers didn't believe he could reasonably portray a character who was supposed to appear small and mousy. He is, for all intents and purposes, replaced by the character Nigel.
Narrowly averted with Madam Pomfrey and Professor Sprout, who were brought back in the sixth and eighth films respectively after both having been absent since the second.
Where Padma Patil and Gregory Goyle appear in the final film, Parvati Patil and Vincent Crabbe (who was supposed to get Goyle's death scene) vanish without explanation, although the latter was due to Absentee Actor.
Colour-Coded For Your Convenience: In the films, the ties and lapels of Hogwarts uniforms are in the colours of the student's house. Red and gold for Gryffindor, Black and Gold for Hufflepuff, blue and silver for Ravenclaw, green and silver for Slytherin.
Composite Character: The boy identified in the later films as "Nigel" seems to be a composite of Colin and Dennis Creevey from the books; reportedly, the actor playing Colin had grown up something fierce and no longer looked boyish enough next to Daniel Radcliffe.
Continuity Nod: In Deathly Hallows, the scene where the Room of Requirement burns (the hide-everything version where Ravenclaw's diadem is hidden) features sets and props from the other films, such as Philosopher/Sorcerer's Stone's giant chess pieces.
Cowardly Lion: Ron's persona seems to cater this more so than in the books. He gets freaked out pretty often, but it's obvious he more than has the skill to do what needs to be done on more than one occasion.
Averted by choice. For the Mirror of Erised scene, Chris Columbus offered Rowling a cameo as Lily Potter. Jo politely refused, saying that it was best left for a real actor, and didn't want people to think she had written some Self-Insert Fic. A rumour that she was the witch who, in Chamber of Secrets, approaches Harry in Knockturn Alley ("not lost, are you my dear?") was quashed by Rowling on her website, where she confirms that she was only ever offered the part of Lily. However, it does appear that she reversed the decision come film 6, where she can be seen on the cover of the magazine Dumbledore takes from the house due to the "knitting patterns."
Alfonso Cuar๓n is the man seated holding two lit candles when Harry enters Madame Rosmerta's tavern.
In Goblet, Mike Newell's voice is heard on the radio in the opening scene with Frank Bryce.
Culture Equals Costume: In Goblet of Fire, Cho Chang wears a silver Cheongsam-style dress to the Yule Ball. The Patil twins wears saris. In Order of the Phoenix and Deathly Hallows Part 1, Kingsley Shacklebolt wears a daishiki.
For the most part, an Averted Trope with the central Power Trio, and some of the other younger actors, especially in the early films. However, as the films were staggered further and further apart, the age differences between the cast and their characters grew.
Emma Watson managed to avoid this completely, since she was actually younger than Hermione in the first book when she was cast. An Averted Trope again with Evanna Lynch as Luna in Order of the Phoenix.
Subverted with Tom Riddle, whose actor was 25 in Chamber of Secrets but was recast as a teenager of equal age in Half-Blood Prince.
An especially egregious example is the casting of Shirley Henderson, well into her thirties at the time, as Moaning Myrtle, the ghost of a Hogwarts student. (Of course, it's hard to tell with all that ghost make-up.) Also, this may have been a conscious decision. If they had cast a teenager in the part of Myrtle, she would have looked noticeably older by Goblet of Fire. By casting a young-looking adult in the part, this becomes much less of an issue.
David Tennant plays Barty Crouch, Jr. both in the present day and in flashback. Present-day Crouch, Jr. is Tennant's real age, but in the flashback, Crouch Jr. is supposed to be about nineteen. Tennant does not look it at all.
Also a accidental case with Geraldine Somerville and Adrian Rawlins as Lily and James Potter as the age when they died was not revealed to be 21 until the final book 6 years after the first film was released. The two were played by actors in their 30's and 40's. The gravestone in the film indeed confirms that they are the same age as in the books. This is made worse by the fact the two actors age 10 years between the movies despite their characters being dead with Somerville and Rawlins around their 40's and 50's.
Taken to an extreme with Alan Rickman, who plays Snape (who is in his late 30's in his last appearance) when he is actually in his mid-60s.
Maggie Smith as Professor McGonagall as well. McGonagall, as it would be revealed later ages from 46 (in Movie 1's first season with baby!Harry) to about 63-64 at the end of the final movie. She was not recast for that scene, either, making Maggie about 20 years older at the time than her character was supposed to be.
Darker and Edgier: The later films got increasingly darker both in terms of the subject matter and the cinematography. The first two films was full of warm golds and reds, while the later films favours cold blues and Deathly Hallows is almost black and white. To further hammer this fact in, "Hedwig's Theme", which introduces each film, sounds slightly more eerie, shriller and more discordant in each consecutive film (the 4th movie shifted the theme to a minor key, and there it stayed for the rest of the franchise; in Deathly Hallows, the intro theme is drowned out halfway through by a reptilian screech). But after Voldemort was defeated in the last film, the vivid colours of the first movies return.
At some points in the final three films the action, which is easy to see when watching in a dark cinema or room, is hard to see in a bright room with sunlight shining in.
Poor Griphook, Bogrod and Pius Thicknesse in Deathly Hallows Part 2. Bogrod's fate is left ambiguous in Deathly Hallows during the Gringotts break-in, but in the final film he is seen roasted by a dragon.
People were probably cheering when Fenrir and Scabior got taken out too, though.
Additionally, Goyle replaces Crabbe as the one to be killed by the Fiendfyre in the Room of Requirement.
Word of God has confirmed that Lavender Brown DID die after having her neck chomped on by a werewolf.
Let's not forget Amycus and Alecto Carrow, who are quite possibly killed by a Blasting Curse during McGonagall's duel with Snape, while in the book, they are merely trapped in a net by McGonagall and hung in the Ravenclaw common room.
The Death Eaters' pointed hoods give them a strong resemblance to the Ku Klux Klan, although with the opposite colour scheme, of course.
In Half-Blood Prince:
Cormac inquires about Hermione to Ron, while brandishing his quite large Quidditch broomstick.
A bathrobe-clad Ginny points out to Harry that his shoelace is untied, and drops down to a knee, at first out of frame. To tie his shoe, of course!
Ron is wiping a lot of things off Hermione's lips... like toothpaste and butterbeer foam...
Deathly Hallows Part 1 has two major ones:
The scene where Hermione is tortured by Bellatrix Lestrange. It happens offscreen in the book, but you get to see plenty of it in the film adaptation, and it strongly ressembles rape.
The Nazi-esque posters and pamphlets being printed from the same film. Another Nazi-esque bit of symbolism is Bellatrix scarring Hermione's arm with "Mudblood", which is reminiscent of the serial numbers tattooed onto the forearms of interns in concentration camps.
Speaking of Nazis, Albert Runcorn, the man Harry polyjuices into, wears a leather jacket and an outfit that makes him look like a Gestapo officer.
From Deathly Hallows Part 2:
Possible as another Nazi-esque reference, Both Bellatrix and Lucius have Azkaban numbers tattooed on their necks.
Ron opens the door to the Chamber of Secrets with some Parseltongue.
Ron: I learnt that from Harry — he talks in his sleep, did you know that? Hermione:(looking a bit flustered) No... of course not!
Those twin girls from the sixth movie were meant to set up one in which Harry realizes the Vanishing Cabinet has a twin. The scene got cut, but it's included in the deleted scenes on the DVD. Thus, the twins' appearances throughout the finished film might count as The Artifact.
Fake Brit: Averted, one of Rowling stipulations for the films is that all of the British characters must be played by actors from the UK (or Ireland, i.e. Michael Gambon playing the English Dumbledore). The only time they broke this rule is when the American director Christopher Columbus cast his daughter in the (non-speaking) role of Susan Bones.
Hermione gets one in Deathly Hallows Part 1 while she's cutting Harry's hair.
Fantastic Racism: Voldemort and his Death Eaters to all Muggle-Borns. The Malfoys employ this egregiously to anyone Muggle-born, who associate with Muggles, the entire Weasley family, and, judging from the reaction Lucius gave when entering Hagrid's hut in Chamber of Secrets, anyone who was not rich. A sort of unifying brand of racism goes through the Death Eaters, the Malfoys, and Dolores Umbridge in regards to members of other magical species as well.
Occasionally, but especially in Half-Blood Prince.
Ginny: Your shoelace is untied. (her head bobs down nearly to the bottom of the frame)
And then there's this:
Ron: So, did you and Ginny do it? Harry:What? Ron: Hide the book.
Also, there's Mrs. Weasley yelling at Fred and George for scaring her by Apparating in Order of the Phoenix:
Mrs. Weasley: Just because you can use magic now does not mean you have to whip your wands out for everything!
As pointed out in this Cracked article, during the credits of Prisoner of Azkaban, which are modeled after the Marauder's Map, judging by the movements and shoe positions, there's a pair of students who are fairly obviously doing the nasty in a corner.
Good Colors, Evil Colors: When Voldemort comes back in Goblet of Fire, he's a nice, sickly green. Notice when Harry fights him in the morning sun in the final movie, he's pretty near a normal skin tone — probably because he's now missing several evil Horcruxes.
Severus Snape's death. Even then it's a Nothing Is Scarier moment as we see only a view through a dirty window, but can hear clearly the sound of the snake striking him again and again.
Inverted and played straight with the discovery of Bathilda Bagshot's body in Deathly Hallows Part 1. While you don't see her body, as it is being used by Nagini like a suit, the indication that Bagshot was brutally murdered is the rather large and gruesome pool of blood dripping from the ceiling of her house.
In both the book and movie versions, Harry is continuously forced by Umbridge to write "I must not tell lies" in his own blood. In the movie version, after leading Umbridge on a wild goose chase into the woods, she's captured by the centaurs, and begs Harry to tell them she means no harm, at which point Harry replies, "I'm sorry, Professor. I must not tell lies." This occurred in the book, but those lines between Harry and Umbridge were left out. In the film version of Deathly Hallows, Harry once again uses the "must not tell lies" line on Umbridge while in the Ministry.
Also in Deathly Hallows, when Griphook asked Harry where he got the Sword of Gryffindor, Harry said "It's complicated." Griphook gave the same answer when Harry asked him why Bellatrix thought the sword would be inside the Lestrange vault.
Done very subtly within the first ten minutes of Philosopher's Stone: As the thousands upon thousands of letters begin to shoot down the Dursley's chimney, the camera begins to shake rather wildly to indicate that the house is being bombarded by scores of Hogwarts admittance letters.
David Yates is a fan of Jitter Cam, apparently, as it's used in Order during some scenes in the Ministry, in Prince when Harry is pursuing Bellatrix in the field outside of the Burrow, and in in Deathly Hallows Part 1, particularly in the scene where Ron fights with Harry in the tent and leaves.
A rumour exists that when Kenneth Branagh was selected to play Lockhart, he, Alan Rickman (Snape) and Jason Isaacs (Malfoy) competed to see who could deliver the most porktacular performance that would make it into the final cut of the film.
And Jessie Cave as Lavender Brown hams it up, especially in the scene in the hospital wing.
There is a build-up between Hermione and Ron in the books, but the movies downplay the Slap-Slap-Kiss and build them up as a couple earlier, averting the trope. It also manages to avert it for Harry and Ginny in the film version of Prince by giving Ginny more screen time and giving them more scenes together and not having them break up at the end as they do in the book, making their being Happily Married in the epilogue a bit more believable.
In the final movie Neville declares that he's crazy about Luna, which is contrary to what J.K. had happening to the two characters. That said, both Neville and Luna's actors stated they imagined Neville and Luna would only dated for a short time before realizing they were better as friends.
Lecherous Licking: Barty Crouch Jr. definitely seems to idolise Voldemort a bit too much. It's taken to the extreme Goblet of Fire, when Barty actually wipes blood off Harry's arm, saying that his blood now runs within the Dark Lord, before appearing to lick it off his finger.
In Deathly Hallows Part II just before McGonagall animates the stone knights to defend Hogwarts you can see behind her Professor Slughorn drinking something. He's the potions master, it was undoubtedly something helpful like Felix Felicitis.
Mr. Fanservice: Daniel Radcliffe had a few shirtless scenes scattered here and there. Also, even though he didn't show an ounce of skin, Jason Isaacs in a blonde wig seemed to be more than enough for many people.
The Training Montage in Order Of The Phoenix going to the D.A.'s Christmas lesson, with Harry and Cho's kiss, to the group practicing Patronus Charms and being raided by Umbridge's Inquisitorial squad, to her and the Ministry confronting Dumbledore and his departure is enough Mood Whiplash to give any Potter fan severe neck injury.
In Half-Blood Prince, the scene goes from funny with Ron being under the influence of the love potion to him convulsing and frothing at the mouth after drinking a poisonous tonic.
In Half-Blood Prince, the Felix sequence is quickly sidelined by the sad story of Francis the fish.
Rita Skeeter:(throwing Harry into a tiny broom closet) Well, now, isn't this cosy? Harry: Um, Miss Skeeter, it's a broom closet. Rita: Well, then, you should feel right at home.
The last line could both be a reference to the fact that Harry used to sleep in a small cupboard under the stairs, or to the fact that he is a skilled broomstick rider. Double points bonus.
In the fifth film, when they find the Room of Requirement, Ron queries whether it would appear as a bathroom if you really needed it. In the books, the first mention of the Room was when it appeared to Professor Dumbledore as a room full of chamberpots in Goblet of Fire (which didn't make it into the film version).
A Nazi by Any Other Name: The "Death Eaters = Nazis" allegory is made quite clear in the books, but emphasized with the posters and pamphlets printed for the anti-Muggle, anti-Muggleborn campaigns; low-grade miserable looking workers in gray striped robes in the Ministry; and the Ministry's elite guard wearing blue Nazi-styled uniforms (arm-scarf included!) in Deathly Hallows.
Goblet's trailer shows Harry spitting out his water upon seeing girls from Beauxbatons when it's really Cho he's looking at!
A good majority of the ads for the sixth movie consisted of wacky modern dance music in the background while trying to imply that it will be nothing but a wacky magical teen romantic comedy movie, which is half-right, but that still doesn't excuse there being about... one commercial made that made any mention of, you know... Voldemort. Justified in that Voldemort is an outside presence in the film, just like the source material.
A small and rather cruel one for the seventh film. There was a shot of Harry setting Hedwig free, implying that she wouldn't die like she did in the book. However, she ends up reappearing during the chase scene and tries to save Harry's life, but is hit with a killing curse. However, test screening viewers warned fans about this ahead of time.
This was done rather sneakily with a few lines in trailers for the seventh and eighth film: most noticeably with some of Voldemort's lines:
"I have seen your heart, and it is mine", which in both the book and film is Voldemort's locket Horcrux speaking to Ron, is used out of context to make it seem like Voldemort is talking to Harry.
The frequently used sound byte "Bring him to me!" is always used with a shot of Harry, while in Deathly Hallows Part 2 proper, it's Voldemort ordering Lucius to give him Snape.
And of course, there's NYEEEEAAAAH! which was used only once by Voldemort in Deathly Hallows Part 1 (after the Seven Potters chase), but shows up very frequently in the trailers for Part 2.
The trailers for Part 2 were partial to using Voldemort's line "Only I can live forever." during shots of the final showdown with Harry. It's actually what Voldemort says right before cutting Snape's throat and ordering Nagini to attack.
Never Work with Children or Animals: As Katie Couric pointed out in a TV special about the making of the first film, Harry Potter breaks both rules rather spectacularly. Chris Columbus has said that the first film is full of cuts because the kids would so often ruin takes by laughing, looking into the camera, etc. He was therefore quite impressed that the main trio had progressed enough to be able to do The Oner in later films. And, of course, the UK's child actor laws provided the inconvenience of only being able to use their lead actors for four hours per day while they were still underage. The Great Hall scenes were especially difficult, as they combined the difficulty of working with children and the difficulty of working with crowds.
Obviously Evil: Absolutely no-one who is with the Death Eaters seems like they would fit in anywhere else. You have the guy with a snake face, the grovelling servant, the Ax-Crazy witch, the sneering rich blonde, and the guy who likes screaming and flailing his tongue around.
In Deathly Hallows Part 1, when Umbridge realizes Runcorn is really Harry in disguise, just before he stupefies her.
Also in Part 2, Neville has a an Oh Crap look on his face when the barrier around Hogwarts fades, and hundreds of Voldemort's mooks come rushing towards the bridge he's guarding.
Neville is prone to these: He gets one in Goblet of Fire during the second Triwizard Tournament challenge, after Harry fails to surface for air after taking the Gillyweed for a certain period of time, believing that he killed Harry.
Neville:(turning around, grabbing clumps of his hair) Oh my God! I've killed Harry Potter!
Yet Neville turned this around at the final battle during Part 2, on Voldemort nonetheless, when he slew Nagini with Gryffindor's sword. The deadlock between Harry and Voldemort ceased momentarily, and Voldemort, his face saying it all, realized that he doesn't have any Horcruxes left to rely on.
Deathly Hallows Part 1 features a private police force stationed in the Ministry of Magic after Voldemort takes over. They all wear red armbands. Subtle. Not to mention all of those anti-Muggleborn propaganda pamphlets.
Albert Runcorn's leather trench coat, when combined with his duties and demeanour, give him the appearance of a Gestapo operative.
Also from the seventh film, Bellatrix carves "mudblood" into Hermione's arm, much like how the Nazis tattooed numbers onto the skin of Jews during the Holocaust. You know, just in case the allegory was still too subtle at that point.
The way the students at Hogwarts are marching at the beginning of the eighth movie evokes this. The students. Some of whom are eleven.
Seamus Finnigan making everything explode (including his cauldron and a feather) in classes. Acknowledged / lampshaded in Goblet of Fire, where he mentions he doesn't do it on purpose, it just happens a fair bit, and in Deathly Hallows Part 2, when McGonagall tells Neville to rig the wooden bridge to blow, and she suggests he enlist the help of Seamus and his talent for pyrotechnics.
Filch prematurely firing off the cannon before/during each round of the Triwizard Tournament in Goblet of Fire.
Much of Prisoner of Azkaban, especially the outdoor scenes and the shots of the spiral staircase. (Maybe not so much scenery porn per se as cinematography porn — but as that isn't yet a recognized trope, this trope comes closest.)
The swooping shot of the sea cliff in Half-Blood Prince.
Several scenes in Deathly Hallows while Harry, Hermione, and Ron are on the run. The movie really loves long shots of the trio's campgrounds.
Seeing Hogwarts for the first time in Philosopher's Stone, with the camera panning up from the students' point-of-view on the lake, and again at the end of Chamber of Secrets when the camera zooms out from the Great Hall.
In the first movie, Quirrell collapses to dust, leaving his clothes to fall empty to the floor.
In the third film, Pettigrew leaves behind his clothes after turning into a rat. Which is weird, seeing how Animagi always have clothes on when they turn human and McGonagall's cat form is noted to have markings around its eyes which resemble her glasses. In the book, this occurs at a different point, also with Pettigrew. After he framed Sirius for his death and turned into a rat, it's mentioned he left behind a pile of clothes and one finger. So... was he naked in the Shrieking Shack? Maybe they just conjure clothes when they turn human since they are wizards, after all.
In Goblet, when Harry uses the bath to figure out the secret of the egg.
The Deathly Hallows films feature several over their course:
Part 1: Harry (several times over) during the clothes-changing in the "everyone Polyjuices into Harry" scene, and when he strips down to jump into the pond to get the sword. Ron also has one right after the trio escapes from the Ministry, but it flies straight into Fan Disservice when we see that his shoulder's laid open to the bone.
Part 2: Harry and Ron changing into dry shirts after the trio emerges from the lake.
Subverted. In Deathly Hallows Part 1, Hedwig looks like she'd be about to get this, when Harry lets her fly away, where in the books, she got hit by a stray curse while in her cage. Subverted when she flies back and takes a blow for him. However, test screening viewers told fans what would happen, so it wasn't unexpected when it did.
Deathly Hallows also spares Wormtail (he survives Part 1, and doesn't appear at all in Part 2). It also spared Vincent Crabbe, whose actor wasn't available for the movie, so Goyle was the one to die by Fiendfyre.
Unless you believe that Dobby kills him, which is conceivable given that he doesn't appear in later films.
Voldemort does not kill Grindelwald, who tells him where the Elder Wand is unlike in the book.
The film version of Goblet of Fire seems to spare Barty Crouch Jr., as we do not see what happens to him after the interrogation scene and he is never seen again. In the book he is given the Dementor's Kiss.
The Protego Maximashield charm that envelops Hogwarts in Deathly Hallows Part 2, which not only deflects bombardment for a while, but actually disintegrates humans that try to breach it.
The maximized version of the Patronus charm, as cast by Harry in Prisoner of Azkaban and Aberforth during Deathly Hallows Part 2 to ward off mass quantities of Dementors, also has this visual effect.
The Half-Blood Prince trailer spoils just about every major plot point, excluding Horcruxes and Dumbledore's death.
The first teaser trailer for the two Deathly Hallows movies starts with the part where Harry is by himself confronting Voldemort and his followers in the Forbidden Forest and Voldemort using the "Killing Curse" on him!
The trailer for Deathly Hallows Part 2 shows Ron crying over his brother Fred's dead body while Harry's V.O. says "I never wanted any of you to die for me."
Anothere trailer shows Harry in the Forbidden Forest talking to his mother, father, Sirius, and Lupin, who are all supposed to be dead, but now brought back to life by the Resurrection Stone!
The fourth showed that Harry's name comes out of the goblet.
For the third, the trailer with Harry shouting "expecto patronum" very loudly likely makes obvious what is going to happen for those far enough into the movie to have already heard Harry's quieter "expecto patronum" shouts.
We Can Rule Together: Toyed with near the end of the fifth movie when Voldemort "coaches" Harry on how to use the Cruciatus Curse on Bellatrix.
Also used near the end of the first when Voldemort tries to turn Harry in an attempt to get the Sorcerer's/Philosopher's stone.
"Cinema Sins Narrator: Voldemort offers an Empire, but Harry strikes back."
Jason Isaacs recalls sitting next to Branagh in their makeup chairs one day and he asked Isaacs how he was doing. Isaacs confessed his acting may have been "too big." Branagh replied "Look up at my heels."
Radcliffe, as well, demonstrated his own potential to unleash the Hog in Half-Blood Prince.
It's pretty damn clear with every line she speaks in Deathly Hallows that Helena Bonham-Carter is now the undisputed ruler of Ham World! Except for the sequence where she pretends to be Hermione's poor impression of Bellatrix, where she does a good job of being Emma Watson pretending to be someone else, who is pretending to be someone else.
For only appearing for five minutes in Goblet of Fire, David Tennant holds his own ground as incredibly hammy as a fellow psychopath. Especially his facial expressions.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, Helen McCrory joked that all of the adult actors hammed it up as revenge for having their subplots cut.
As stated above, Fudge's resignation is never mentioned.
Wormtail's death is cut from Deathly Hallows Part 1, but Wormtail doesn't appear at all in Part 2. Timothy Spall was originally intended to reprise the role in Part 2, suggesting that he was intended to be killed off anyway, but his part ended up being cut. Some believe Dobby's attack killed him, or that he is among those killed by Voldemort at the beginning of Part 2 after the Gringotts scene.
Crabbe fits this trope when he doesn't appear in Deathly Hallows Part 2 (where Goyle does), although there was a reason the filmmakers cut him out (his actor Jamie Waylett was arrested for possession of drugs). Still, it wouldn't have been too hard to at least give mention to him in the Room of Requirement scene.