There has not been a new book in the franchise for a few years now, and the most recent movie set in that franchise’s magical universe, released in 2018, was not quite so well-received. Even the star of the franchise’s original author has dimmed with some fans on account of some controversy or other. But the fact remains that “Harry Potter” was a big part in the life of many from the mid-1990s to the late 2000s, and there is still plenty of nostalgia generated by it thanks to theme park areas, studio tours where the films were made, and even stores like the one opening in the Big Apple.
Entertainment Weekly has an inside scoop on a new flagship store for “Harry Potter” in New York that will be open for business this coming June. Said store is under the auspices of Warner Bros. Retail Destinations, meaning it will carry official merchandise related to the “Harry Potter” books and films, as well as the miscellaneous media about the Wizarding World, many of which were penned by original author J.K. Rowling. Its location near the Flatiron Building at 935 Broadway will ensure that it is close to the center of prime shopping destinations in Manhattan.
As WB Retail Destinations VP and General Manager Karl Durrant puts it, the opening of the flagship Potter store serves as a breath of magic to a community that has long been sapped of enthusiasm by the COVID pandemic. Thus, the store will enchant customers and visitors to no less than 15 themed areas occupying a total of 21,000 square feet across three floors. They will be filled to the brim with “Harry Potter” merchandise, some of them exclusives to the store even, with props and items lovingly copied as depicted in the WB movies.
That is the major selling point according to Durrant: that the merch props are replicated from the studio props used in the 11 “Harry Potter” films from Warner Brothers. “Thanks to this collaboration, we’re bringing authentic props that come directly from the films and also authentic recreations,” he says, name-dropping Harry’s wand and broomstick, the Hogwarts-use Golden Snitch, and even Tom Riddle’s diary. Also to be found in the flagship store are VR experiences and a store-within-a-store for designers MinaLima, who worked on the “Harry Potter” and “Fantastic Beasts” movies. Some of these items might be available on HarryPotter.com, but most others can only be bought in-store when the “Harry Potter” flagship opens June 3.
Image from NY Daily News