Movie Fact #793 – June 25th, 2015:

Director David Yates was known as a television director of the grounded, realistic variety before he took on 2007’s “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”, based on the fifth book of the same name in author J.K. Rowling’s famous seven book fantasy series. He apparently was a natural at it because he went on to direct that one as well as the remaining three films in the “Harry Potter” series in 2012. He ultimately would work in production on the “Harry Potter” film series for six consecutive years from 2006 to 2011. And he didn’t stop there.

After the financial and critical success of all four entries that he directed in the “Harry Potter” series, Yates has now been confirmed to direct at least the first film in a trilogy of installments based on author J. K. Rowling’s book “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” which is set in the “Harry Potter” universe. It is due out next year in 2016. For Yates though, it wasn’t just his first big budget film. It was also the first time he had to deal with big visual effects…which he jumped into on his first day at work.

The first scene Yates shot for “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” featured a giant interacting with human characters. Fans of the book and the film adaptation know what scene I am referring to but this point is that that scene was the very first high-scale visual effects piece Yates filmed in his career. He was aware of what he was getting into though as he actually sat down with the director of 2005’s “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire”, the fourth book of the same name in the “Harry Potter” series. The director, Mike Newell, ended up serving as Yates’s crash course into big budget filmmaking when Yates sat down with Newell at a pub and, as Yates put it later on, “picked his brains about what it was going to be like to step into someone’s shoes on a movie of this scale.”

It all worked out for the best and with Yates real-world approach to “Harry Potter” films he created vastly complex, politically relevant films for the general audience to chew on intellectually. And honestly, it never hurts to make a fun film also educational…adds purpose and meaning to the film and the artform itself to utilize fantasy as a relevant genre to real world society.

Published in: on June 25, 2015 at 2:02 AM  Leave a Comment  

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