Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo
Hogwarts Castle Orlando Studios
Hogwarts Castle Orlando Studios
Nashra Syed
Entertainment

Harry Potter and the Impact it Has on the World

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

“You’re a wizard, Harry.”

Whether you’re a fan of the books, films, or not one at all, you’re probably familiar with Harry Potter and most likely watched at least one film. The Harry Potter franchise has (arguably) become one of the most influential and impactful stories to have ever existed during our lifetime. For many, it was an escape from reality.

Twenty years after the initial release of the first movie, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, actors, actresses, producers and directors of the franchise decided to come together to bless Potterheads all over the world with a reunion. On Jan. 1, 2022, Return to Hogwarts aired and gave us all major nostalgia.

My older sister, being the bookworm that she is, introduced me to the Harry Potter series. I remember watching the first movie with her when I was about six or seven years old. I can still remember watching Harry jumping up, trying to catch one of his Hogwarts acceptance letters for the first time. Because of my sister, I joined a Harry Potter club in Grade four, made my own wand and started to read the books. That was my entry into the Wizarding World.

When I first read Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, I immediately fell in love with Sirius Black. I’m not an emotional person, but I cried when Sirius, Fred, Remus, Tonks and Snape died (I still do every time I watch the Order of the Pheonix and the Deathly Hallows). I was asked why I got emotional. “They’re just fictional characters,” they’d say. But to me, they were more than that. These were the characters I, like so many others, grew up with, and that kind of connection doesn’t just go away.

Over these past 20 years, Harry Potter has become a household name. The series has sold over 500 million copies worldwide. Return to Hogwarts was a way to relive the feeling of watching every movie for the first time. Reading the books is one thing because of the amount of detail and explanation in them, but watching the movies was a whole different experience. You got to see the series come to life through the actors, actresses and sets.

I watched the reunion and started crying at the two-minute mark, not because it was sad, but because of the overwhelming amount of emotions and nostalgia I had. Seeing the Hogwarts letter being addressed to Matthew Lewis, Emma Watson and Robbie Coltrane the same way they were addressed to Harry in the first film, brought back many memories. It also made me appreciate the attention to detail the directors and producers put in throughout the years. Watching the movies as a kid, I didn’t really pay attention to that, but now watching the reunion and seeing how everything was built gave me newfound respect for the crew. One thing that stood out to me was how Fawkes, Dumbledore’s pet phoenix, was an actual robotic bird that was created, not something done through CGI. All the sets, like Dumbledore’s office and the Gryffindor common room were kept intact which made me feel as if I was there with the actors, returning to Hogwarts. In case you were wondering, I didn’t stop crying even until after I had finished the reunion.

As I continue to grow older, I understand that many actors who played important characters will no longer be here, but their impact on Harry Potter will always remain.

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter is more than just a series, it’s a pillar of my childhood and my happy place. I’ve been to Universal Studios in Florida three times, and every time I go, Harry Potter World is still my favourite. The feeling of walking through replicas of Diagon Alley, Knockturn Alley, Hogsmeade and Hogwarts will never fade away.

Return to Hogwarts was a bittersweet experience, reminding me that this is the end of an era. I will never stop having Harry Potter movie marathons every year, nor will I ever stop re-reading the books.

I am a Potterhead, now and always.

Nashra Syed

Ryerson '24

Nashra is a second-year journalism student at Ryerson University. She hopes to work in the sports and entertainment industry as a producer or broadcaster. Her favourite food is tacos and her favourite sports team is the Toronto Raptors.
Similar Reads👯‍♀️