Tuesday, June 13, 2006

'Harry Potter' sightings

The Harry Potter "flying car," stolen last year, has been recovered. It's a 1962 Ford Anglia and doesn't have an engine. The Dark Lord is suspected in the theft.

Meanwhile, there were three other Potter sightings. If you had a Marauder's Map, you might have seen the footprints of three familiar Potter characters on Broadway.

British character actor Richard Griffiths, the larger-than-life etcher who just took home a Tony Sunday night for Broadway's "The History Boys," is Dudley's dad -- Harry's spiteful Uncle Vernon.

And Frances de la Tour, a Griffith ally who also won a 2006 Tony Award for "History Boys," plays Hagrid's love interest -- Mme. Maxine, mistress of Beauxbatons.

Then there's Ralph Fiennes, who appeared in the most recent film as He-Who-Must-Not-Be-Named, who was nominated for the same Tony Award that Griffiths won (what a shocking headling that would have been - Dursley beats Voldemort) for Fiennes' portrayal of the titular "Faith Healer."

(For even weirder casting, the drunken, misty-eyed manager in "Faith Healer" is Ian McDiarmid -- Senator, Chancellor and Emperor Palpatine as well as Sith Lord Darth Sidious from the "Star Wars" movies. No light sabers in sight.)

By the way, I just visited the official J. K. Rowling site for the first time. Pretty cool, for wizards and muggles alike. And if you're even more of a fan than I, check out http://www.hpana.com/dailyprophet/, which will give you all the Harry Potter news from everywhere, and deals in survey questions like which visiting school made the best entrance to the great hall in "Goblet of Fire," Beauxbatons or Durmstrang.

- Michael K.

(Durmstrang, of course.)

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