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Harry Potter and the Endless Franchise

Updated on November 19, 2010

Like many things, it began with love. True love with intensity. Famous actors, directors, writers and musicians driven by the love of what they do-success or not.

Joanne Rowling was no different. She was in 1996-97, an unemployed woman getting weekly unemployment checks in the UK. The furthest thing from her was success. The closest was total failure. Yet, she did love to write stories and that is what she did, no doubt, to pass the idle time as she looked for work, to feel good about herself as a person and being creative. Of course, like all wannabe authors, she thought maybe this book she wrote would sell, bring in an income for a little while. There is nothing better than making money at what you love to do, even if you do it 24hrs a day. Oh, Joanne was a single mom, as well!

When her book was done, she did what all writers do, sent it around to publishers. Her title was, "Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone". Naturally, it was rejected and rejected and rejected. The manuscript finally ended up in David Heyman's office. When he first saw it, he thought the title was simply "pure rubbish" and it turned him off so much the manuscript landed on the low priority shelf to read. Time passed. Joanne continued to despair about her future. Then, a secretary in Heyman's office came across it and thought the title was amusing. She glanced at it. She took it home one weekend and read it. On Monday, the woman told Heyman he must really take a read of the book. It was good. Fun. Mystical. Heyman said, OK.

Soon, Heyman was done was enthralled with the book's characters, not so much with the theme or magic. He eventually would become the film's producer, David Heyman. Many years would go by before the first HP movie appeared. Joanne gradually got off welfare from the proceeds of the book.

Now, the six HP movies have grossed 5.7 billion dollars, Joanne has sold 400 million copies of the books in 69 languages! There is also a 7 billion of sales in merchandise.

As to Daniel Radcliffe who plays Harry Potter in all of the films, now 21, like Joanne, he almost did not get the role. Heyman notes, the other actor was good and we nearly selected him until Joanne saw Daniel in the audition with his parents (age 11 then). When Joanne saw him, she said, "that is exactly how I imagined him to be in my book".

Amazing. Joanne Kathleen Rowling (aka J.K. Rowling) closed the deal for Daniel, whose life entirely changed. Emma Watson now is attending college in NYC. Rupert continues to pursue acting. All are multi-millionaires twice over.

The moral of this story is simply do what you love to do. If success comes, great. If not, at least you are truly happy!


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      7 years ago from Dayton, ohio

      It took many long years for JKR to become an "Overnight sensation."

    • perrya profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago

      Okay, all good to know!

    • etower036 profile image


      7 years ago from Helana

      I am a "wannabe" author myself, and when I found this hub, I was happy someone was writing about Harry Potter, but... some of your accounts about the real fact behind the success of the Harry Potter book is a bit off. (if I seem negative about your hub it is not intended, just want to be helpful.)

      First, It was not David Hayman who discovered JKR, but that belongs to Christopher Little an agent for Bloomsbury Publishing Company in the UK. Bloomsbury bought the rights to the book from JKR for £2,500. It was later bought for American publishing by Scholastics for $105,000. The title was changes for the American release to "The Sorcerer's Stone. They believed that the origanal title was a bit confusing and wanted to associate it with terms of magic, though the original title was more appropriate because it had to do with Alchemy more then with just magic.) JKR had been writing most of her life but it wasn't till a train ride gave her the inspiration for Harry Potter. She wrote alot of her ideas on scraps of paper, when the ideas came to her, and once in a diner on some napkins.

      As for Daniel Radcliffe, he had been acting for a long time even before he landed the role of Harry Potter. IT was not JKR who discovered him, but it was Matter of fact David Hayman who was told about Danial Radcliffe and he had seen him in a play on stage. Daniel with his first movie role as the young David Copperfield in 1999. Then The Tailor of Panama in 2001, the same year he accepted the role of Harry Potter.

      Sorry, I'm a buff for all of this, and use the website internet movie data base or imdb.

      Now if you were talking about the movie manuscript, that is also another story in itself. The movie script was charged to Steve Kloves, who then went on to write the screen plays for the rest of the movies.


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