It's a pretty big year for Harry Potter fans.
Not only is "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" set to kick off an entirely new chapter for the franchise, this year also marks the 15th anniversary of the original movie, "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone." To celebrate both those occasions, here are 15 interesting facts you might not know about the first Potter movie.1. As the creator of Harry Potter, it would have been fitting if Rowling played his mother during the scenes where Harry sees his family in the Mirror of Erised. But while that was originally the plan, the role eventually went to actress Geraldine Somerville.
2. Potter fans will surely know that the first book and movie are titled "Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone" in most countries. This forced director Chris Columbus to shoot two versions of scenes that involve any mention of the Sorcerer's Stone so the dialogue could be altered.
3. Every one knows that Steven Spielberg was considered to helm the movie, which he suggested should be animated rather than live-action. But, after he dropped out, few know who the legendary filmmaker suggested as his replacement: M. Night Shyamalan.
4. The various child actors in the film, including stunt doubles, actually attended class during filming. Each actor was given several hours of private tuition each day.
5. Alan Rickman was hand-picked by author J.K. Rowling to play Professor Snape. She even revealed certain details about the character's history to him that fans wouldn't learn until the final book was released.
6. The iconic floating candles in Hogwarts' Great Hall were made by suspending candle-shaped tubes on thin wires. Unfortunately, the wires had a nasty habit of breaking during filming, causing a switch to CG-animated candles for all the sequels.
7. Warners initially balked at the idea of producing one movie for each Harry Potter book, fearing the child actors would age too quickly over the course of the series. Luckily, Rowling convinced them to take that risk.
8. Nicholas Flamel, creator of the titular Sorcerer's Stone, is believed to have actually existed in 14th Century France.
9. Losing or breaking your glasses can be a pain, but count yourself lucky that you aren't Harry Potter. Daniel Radcliffe went through no less than 160 pairs over the course of filming.
10. The Mirror of Erised has an inscription along its edge that, when viewed backwards, reads "I show not your face, but your heart's desire."
11. In the script, the flashbacks to Voldemort killing Harry's parents were written by J.K. Rowling herself. The producers knew she was the only one who knew exactly what happened.
12. While many of the owls at Hogwarts are digital creations, some scenes required live owls capable of carrying letters in their beaks. It took six months of training to pull that off.
13. While the massive tomes in Dumbledore's office look impressive, most of them were actually just phone books with fake covers.
14. Williams actively campaigned to be cast as Hogwarts' friendly groundskeeper, but Rowling shot down the idea because she wanted to stick to a strictly British and Irish cast.15. Though it wasn't until the second film that fans learned the human identity of Lord Voldemort, "Sorcerer's Stone" foreshadows the debut of Tom Riddle with a trophy bearing his name and the inscription "Service to the School."
Facts courtesy of IMDB.
Harry Potter has lived under the stairs at his aunt and uncle's house his whole life. But on his 11th birthday, he learns he's a powerful wizard -- with a place waiting for him at the Hogwarts School of... Read More