After months of speculation, Warner Bros has revealed to the L.A. Timesthat they plan to split the final Harry Potter book into two films. One will be released in November 2010, the second in May 2011, and will simply be titled Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I / Part II.

Aware that this looks like a grubby money-maker by cynics (myself included), Daniel Radcliffe insists that's not so. "I think it's the only way you can do it without cutting out a huge portion of the book. There have been compartmentalized subplots in the other books that have made them easier to cut -- although those cuts were still to the horror of some fans -- but the seventh book doesn't really have any subplots. It's one driving, pounding story from the word go."

Producer David Heyman says it was a difficult decision to make for the studio. "I swear to you it was born out of purely creative reasons. Unlike every other book, you cannot remove elements of this book. You can remove scenes of Ron playing quidditch from the fifth book, and you can remove Hermione and S.P.E.W. [Society for the Promotion of Elfish Welfare] and those subplots . . . but with the seventh, that can't be done." Author J.K. Rowling has given her approval, much to everyone's relief.

I do admire that they are so dedicated to giving us the complete Deathly Hallows story that it wears down my cynicism. I disagree that there aren't things that couldn't be trimmed down -- Harry, Hermione and Ron's months upon months of hiding out in a tent, for one. But the fact that it was such an edge-of-the-seat read makes me worry they'll lose that momentum by splitting it in half. And what of the age factor? Will Radcliffe look 35 by the time this is finished?

In the end, I don't care how they release it. I just want it to be the best film of the entire series.
categories Movies, Cinematical