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Warner Bros Studio Tour London: An authentic behind the scenes glimpse of the Harry Potter films

David Goran

Warner Bros. Studios Tour London is quite possibly the only permanent filmmaking exhibit of its size in the world. It provides an amazing new opportunity to explore the magic of the Harry Potter films, one of the most successful film series of all time.

This unique walking tour takes you behind-the-scenes and showcases a huge array of beautiful sets, costumes, and props. Photos: Dave Catchpole/Flickr

Warner Bros. Studios Tour London, entrance.

Warner Bros. Studios Tour London, entrance.

As early as 2001, after the success of the first film, Warner Bros. were putting plans to build an attraction dedicated to the series in place and so began storing items from the films when they were no longer being used.

Finally, in 2010, as the last film was nearing completion, Warner Bros. announced they would be purchasing Leavesden Studios and work on the tour began in earnest.

Harry's Spectacles, one of the original pairs of glasses worn by Daniel Radcliffe.

Harry’s Spectacles, one of the original pairs of glasses worn by Daniel Radcliffe.

 

The Flying Ford Anglia.

The Flying Ford Anglia.

The tour’s layout and overall presentation were designed by the Burbank-based Thinkwell Group in close collaboration with Warner Bros. and the actual filmmakers, including Production Designer Stuart Craig, Set Dresser Stephenie McMillan, Creature Designer Nick Dudman, Construction Manager Paul Hayes & Special Effects Supervisor John Richardson.

The Wooden Bridge of Hogwarts Castle.

The Wooden Bridge of Hogwarts Castle.

 

Tom Riddle's Gravestone.

Tom Riddle’s Gravestone.

 

Left -Moody's Trunk, an especially bewitched magical trunk which has seven locks on it and opens to a different assortment of objects for each lock. Right - The Croxford Reliant, a printing press model.

Left -Moody’s Trunk, an especially bewitched magical trunk which has seven locks on it and opens to a different assortment of objects for each lock. Right – The Croxford Reliant, a printing press model.

It only includes sets, props, and costumes that were actually created for or used in the production of the Harry Potter film series.

Sets like the Great Hall, Dumbledore’s Office, Diagon Alley, the Ministry of Magic, Gryffindor Common Room and Boys’ Dormitory, Hagrid’s Hut and a 1:24 scale model of Hogwarts Castle.

The intricately detailed, spectacularly constructed model of Hogwarts castle.

The intricately detailed, spectacularly constructed model of Hogwarts castle.

 

Hagrid's Hut, which served as a home to Rubeus Hagrid (and some of his pets, including Fang).

Hagrid’s Hut, which served as a home to Rubeus Hagrid (and some of his pets, including Fang).

 

Quality Quidditch Supplies and Madam Malkin's Robes.

Quality Quidditch Supplies and Madam Malkin’s Robes.

The ornate doors to a Gringott’s vault and to the Chamber of Secrets are seen after passing a wall dedicated to the paintings produced to decorate the walls of Hogwarts.

The Chamber of Secrets door and Prop Manufacturing.

The Chamber of Secrets door and Prop Manufacturing.

 

Eeylops Owl Emporium. A chain of shops that sold owls and supplies, such as food, necessary to care for them.

Eeylops Owl Emporium. A chain of shops that sold owls and supplies, such as food, necessary to care for them.

 

The Chess Pieces, one of the charms protecting the Philosopher's Stone.

The Chess Pieces, one of the charms protecting the Philosopher’s Stone.

The team behind Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter wanted to preserve and showcase these iconic props, costumes, and sets so that Harry Potter fans could experience the magic of filmmaking first-hand.

Many of the original cast and crew returned to reassemble the sets and record their memories from filming. It opened to the public on 31st March 2012 and since then has welcomed over 6,000 visitors a day during peak times.

Potions.

Potions.

 

Creature models.

Creature models.

 

Broomsticks, also known as brooms, are one of the means employed by wizards and witches to transport themselves between locations.

Broomsticks, also known as brooms, are one of the means employed by wizards and witches to transport themselves between locations.

Set adjacent to the working film studios where all eight Harry Potter films were made, the Studio Tour offers visitors the unique opportunity to explore two sound stages and a backlot filled with original sets, animatronic creatures and breathtaking special effects.