News of a new 10-year Harry Potter TV series has drawn a mixed reaction from fans of the franchise.
The project, announced by Warner Bros on Wednesday (12 April), will be released on the streaming service Max, currently branded as HBO Max.
According to Warner Bros, the series will be a “faithful adaptation of the beloved Harry Potter book series by author and executive producer JK Rowling”.
However, while the new series is billed as a departure from the hit film adaptations, with a whole new cast, fans noticed that the announcement seemed to draw heavily from the look – and sound – of the movies.
In an announcement video, the Harry Potter title could be seen written in the exact same font as the film, while Hogwarts school also appeared with the same design as the film.
The film franchise’s famous theme tune, composed by film legend John Williams, was also used to underscore the announcement – a detail that fans were quick to criticise on social media.
One person wrote: “I’ve seen like 500 tweets in the last 48 hours about how much effort they are going to put into making this new Harry Potter its own thing – new cast, faithful adaptations, 10-year plan, etc – and then a teaser drops and they just recycle the John Williams theme???? lol mental.”
“The trailer for the new Harry Potter TV show having the same theme tune as the movies. I mean that’s nothing new with reboots but it is literally just gonna be the same thing all over again with a new cast lol,” another claimed. “What’s the point? (I know the point is to make money.)”
“So this ‘new,’ ‘original,’ and ‘faithful’ adaptation is going to use the same John Williams Harry Potter theme and Hogwarts designs of 20 years ago? Huh,” someone else remarked.
Mashable’s Bob Al-Greene wrote: “Truly wild that the ‘new’ Harry Potter series uses the music from the movies, and apparently the exact same design for Hogwarts? Not to mention the logo.”
Others voiced scepticism about the involvement of series creator Rowling, who has become a divisive figure as a result of her views on transgender rights.
Many castmembers of the original Harry Potter adaptations have distanced themselves from Rowling’s views, including Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson.
Earlier this month, Radcliffe shared an impassioned message about the need to support trans children, with the actor moderating a discussion series involving trans and nonbinary young people for the LGBT+ suicide prevention nonprofit The Trevor Project.