The Harry Potter film franchise just got a little bit bigger, thanks to a crowdfunded fan-made prequel. Voldemort: Origins of the Heir, which was created with a £13,000 budget, has been viewed more than nine million times and received positive critical reviews – impressive, considering the film was released less than a week ago.
The film, which is not endorsed by J.K. Rowling, follows protagonist Grisha McLaggen, a Scottish student who tries to uncover the truth about our good friend Tom Marvolo Riddle. McLaggen, a new character to the story, has ties to the Harry Potter world through Cormac McLaggen. Rowling said at the Edinburgh International Book Festival in 2004, “I found the name McLaggen the other day, which I think is a great name. There’s a McLaggen in book six because I thought that it is a surname that is too good to waste.”
Tryangle Films, the Italian production company to thank for the fifty-two minute prequel, combed through the extensive Harry Potter lore to create their own story. “There are some scenes which have never been on cinema screens, but are already known by the readers of the Harry Potter saga,” said the director, Gianmaria Pezzato.
Unsurprisingly, the production company ran into a bit of trouble when they received a cease and desist letter from Warner Bros, but the companies compromised with Tryangle Films waiving the rights to any profits from the film. “For a non-profit film made purely out of love, it looks great, with big budget quality special effects.”
The film is available on YouTube for free – watch it here, or embedded below.
Featured Image Via Fortress of Solitude.