REVIEW: Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter

Alohomora! Geek Syndicate was invited to a special advance tour of Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter before it opened to the public. There was no way we were going to miss this invite all being huge Harry Potter fans so off we went to indulge our love of all things Potter.

I arrived by car a little early for my tour time and parked in front of two huge sound stages called Stage J and Stage K by some strange coincidence. I could not miss the huge sign welcoming me to the Studio tour above the main entrance. Even before I walked inside I was treated to some of the chess pieces from the first film in which Ron bravely battled on behalf of Harry and Hermione.

I walked inside the spacious ticket hall and was greeted by friendly studio team members all around. The tour starts by queuing next to a mock up of Harry’s first bedroom also know as the cupboard under the stairs. We are then ushered into a small corridor that shows a short film about the Harry Potter phenomenon and the whisked into a  large cinema where the stars of the film introduce us to the magic that is Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter

The first part of the actual tour is the grand hall that was used during all those scenes where the students of Hogwarts ate and relaxed in. Remember Professor Quirrell running down the hall shouting “TROLL IN THE DUNGEONS!” ? Well you are standing on the very same marble floor that they all did. The hall is huge and all along it are costumes of the various houses and then you see the teachers table.  This is truly a magnificent site to behold and you can feel the scenes come alive all around you.

After the hall you enter the start of the studio sets where you can see various set ups which include Harry and Ron’s dorm and the Gryffindor common room.  Each set shows you how small they actually were. Other sets include Hargid’s hut, Professor Snape’s potions classroom, The Weasley’s Burrow and many more.

As you wander around you see other parts of the productions including the costumes from various scenes including the Yule Ball. Then we start to see props as well including the Tri Wizard Cup and a glass case displaying all the wands from every major character in the films. By this time of the tour you are truly seeing the magic behind the films and thoroughly enjoying it.

Also in this hall we see how some of the green screen action was created including how to fly a broom around the Hogwarts. But that is not all as you can also try it yourself as you fly through the streets of London and over the lake near the castle. This was an amazing experience and you can even take it home with you with a photo flying through the air. HINT: Do not wear any green on the day otherwise it will not work to well but they do have Hogwarts robes you can wear.

After this you can take a walk outside where you are treated to the Knight bus, Hagrid’s motorbike and also Mr Weasley’s flying car. Then as you walk around you see the house that belongs to the Dursley’s and also the house where Harry’s parents were killed.

The next part of the tour showcases some of the animatronics used in the film including faces, animals and books. This is all introduced by Professor Flitwick himself Wawrick Davis who tells us a bit about what went on behind the scenes and some funny tales as well. I was amazed by some of the things I saw in this part of the tour.

Once you have finished with the models you turn the corner and then you find yourself standing at the entrance to Diagon Alley complete with real cobble stones. I was amazed at this set and in fact I would hate to use the word set because it is a real place and you instantly feel that as you walk slowly through. From Gringotts Bank to the Weasley’s joke shop it is all there, even Ollivander’s wand shop and if you look really hard you can see Gilderoy Lockhart. Looking back at you from the cover of his book. I would suggest spending a while here to find as many details as you can.

The next part of the tour is the design section where we see all the design models of every location, room, street that was used and the blue prints that were created for the builders or even the CGI designers to help build every detail.

The final room you come to is the model of Hogwarts that just takes your breath away. I do not say this lightly but it is the most amazing model I have ever seen. Every detail is there and the sheer size of it is staggering. This model is bigger than my house and you will take your time to walk around it from above and below.

No tour would be complete without a shop and Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter does not disappoint with the biggest Harry Potter shop in the UK that has just about anything you could ever want.

Overall Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter was by far one of the best experiences I have had for something like this and the key reason was that I knew that all this was used in the films and you can imagine the stars walking around the stages and acting in the various sets. A magical experience to showcase the magic that goes behind the scenes the Harry Potter film franchise.

GS Rating 5/5

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