US movie producers plan new woke Harry Potter film

Film producers plan ‘woke’ Harry Potter series which would see trans female cast as the wizard’s mother amid JK Rowling gender row

  • The woke version of Harry Potter is due to be filmed in America in June and July
  • Many of the characters will be played by transgender and non-binary actors
  • The producers are planning to broadcast the production online as a web series
  • However, the producers could be sued by JK Rowling if they use her characters 

Film producers are planning a woke version of the Harry Potter movies in which the magical characters will be played by transgender and non-binary actors.

In what will be seen by many as a challenge to J.K. Rowling, who was attacked for questioning the claim that trans women are identical to biological women, the filmmakers are seeking a more diverse line-up for the starring roles.

They are insisting that some of the characters for the new versions – to be aired as a ‘web series’ – cannot be played by white actors, including the starring role of James Potter, father of young wizard Harry.

According to casting notes, that role is only open to an actor who is ‘Asian, black, African descent, ethnically ambiguous, multiracial, Indigenous peoples, Latino, Hispanic, Middle Eastern, South Asian, Indian, Southeast Asian or Pacific Islander’. Producers have not specified who they want to play Lily Evans, Harry’s mother, but have said they want a ‘gender-nonconforming, non-binary, trans female’.

American film producers are planning to release a new Harry Potter movie featuring transgender and non-binary actors. Pictured, original cast members Rupert Grint, Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson, who are not involved in this new production

JK Rowling, pictured, is not believed to have allowed the movie’s producers to use her creations leading to the possibility of a court case with Ms Rowling protecting her copyright

Casting sheets for Sirius Black, originally played by Gary Oldman in the movie adaptations, call for a non-white actor.

All genders can audition for the part. The project’s creator, TikTok video producer Megan Mckelli, said: ‘We aim to reflect the diversity of the fanbase in its beloved characters, introducing people of colour, queer storylines, and characters of differing faiths.’

But the producers, who are based in the US, are almost certain to face a legal battle from Ms Rowling, who is not believed to have granted permission for them to use her characters.

While the filmmakers have written their own script, which does not feature Harry – played by Daniel Radliffe in the original films alongside Emma Watson as Hermione Granger and Rupert Grint as Ron Weasley – as the central character, it is based on the books written by Ms Rowling, who guards her copyright.

Her characters such as Remus Lupin, Peter Pettigrew, Marlene McKinnon and Dorcas Meadowes will feature in the series, due to be filmed in the Pacific Northwest area of America in June and July.

Lupin, say producers, can be played by all genders, but Pettigrew must be played by ‘a gender non-conforming, non-binary, trans male’.

It is not yet known when the series will be screened but Ms Mckelli has hired LA-based casting agent Hannah Schill.

Ms Rowling, 56, did not respond to requests for comment about the venture.

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