Harry Potter and
the Sorcerer's Stone

Release Date: November 16, 2001

Harry Potter

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Unless you’ve been stranded on a remote island for the past couple of years, you’re probably well aware of the phenomenon known as Harry Potter. As of early May, the four books in J. K. Rowling’s beloved series about a boy wizard had sold in excess of 100 million copies worldwide, with over 65 million of that coming after the release of the fourth book in July 2000.

There can be little doubt that children will be clamoring to see the movie version of the first novel. The X-factor in predicting the film’s chances for a monster opening is its appeal to adults. The books clearly have fans of all ages (my 56-year-old mother has even read them), but the fear amongst many was that director Chris Columbus’ trademark schmaltz might affect the quality of the film to a degree that would turn adults away.

These fears were essentially laid to rest with the release of the first teaser. With a dark atmosphere true to the spirit of the book, it flashed through several scenes that would be completely familiar to the fans, yet intriguing to the uninitiated. The second trailer provides more of the same, and is generally met with what I can only call reverence from the children who have been in theaters when I have seen it.

In the past two years, we’ve seen two films with tremendous cross-generational appeal and "brand awareness" have huge opening weekends in the month of November. As you can see on the chart below, Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas pulled in $55.08 million in November of 2000, while Toy Story 2 did $57.39 in the three days after Thanksgiving 1999. Harry Potter and his cohorts certainly appear positioned to match or exceed those numbers. Given the mania surrounding the release of the fourth book, the only limitation would appear to be available seats in theaters. (Kim Hollis/BOP)


October 22, 2001
According to an article featured in USA Today, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone will be released in at least 4,000 theaters, which beats the previous theater count record-holder (Mission Impossible:2) by ten percent. Additionally, its release in 130 foreign countries gives it the status of biggest international release ever by Warner Bros. Runtime is just over two and a half hours, which is quite long for a children's film in particular. A new trailer is to be released on November 2nd, and it is said to be dazzling. (Kim Hollis/BOP)




Vital statistics for Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
Main Cast Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson
Supporting Cast Richard Harris, Maggie Smith, Robbie Coltrane
Director Chris Columbus
Screenwriter Steven Kloves
Distributor Warner Bros.
Trailer Click Here for Trailer
Official Site http://www.harrypotter.com/
Rating PG
Running Time 152 minutes
Screen Count 3,672
Also see David Rogers reviews the Harry Potter trailer
Ash Wakeman reviews the Harry Potter trailer
Ash Wakeman reviews Harry Potter
Talent in red has entry in The Big Picture



Comparison films for Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
Title
Date
Opening
Adjusted Opening
Screens
PSA
Adj PSA
Total BO
Adjusted Total
Mult
Pearl Harbor 5/25/0159.08 63.05 3214 18382.00 18870.0 198.54 211.90 3.36
Toy Story 2 11/24/9957.39 68.39 3236 17735.00 20248.6 245.82 292.94 3.05
Shrek 5/18/0142.35 45.20 3587 11805.00 12118.4 267.65 285.66 6.32
Toy Story 11/24/9529.14 40.39 2457 11860.00 15813.3 191.78 265.84 4.90


     


 
 

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