Sunday, July 14, 2024

Harry Potter: The Exhibition premieres at The Franklin Institute

Harry Potter: The Exhibition, a comprehensive touring exhibition about the Wizarding World, made its world premiere at The Franklin Institute in Philadelphia on February 18.

The all-new behind-the-scenes exhibition celebrates the moments, characters, settings and beasts as seen in the films and stories of Harry Potter, Fantastic Beasts and the expanded Wizarding World, including Harry Potter and the Cursed Child through crafted environments that honor many of the moments audiences have seen for over two decades. Visitors can get an up-close look at everything from original costumes to authentic props as they embark on a personalized journey through environments crafted through immersive design and technology.

Photo courtesy of Harry Potter: The Exhibition.

Harry Potter: The Exhibition was created and developed by Imagine Exhibitions in partnership with Warner Bros. Themed Entertainment in association with EMC Presents. The 18,000-square-foot exhibition features 21 galleries, including The Great Hall, Hogwarts castle, Hagrid’s Hut, Hogwarts Houses and Newt’s Suitcase. Guests will transition into the exhibition from King’s Cross Station, where they will complete their Visitor Profile, selecting their Hogwarts house, wand and Patronus as they set off on their personalized journey through the experience.

As visitors explore each gallery, their interactions are captured using RFID wristbands to deliver unique experiences linked to their visitor profile. They will get an up-close look at authentic props and original costumes from the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts films and an opportunity to engage with installations.

Photo courtesy of Harry Potter: The Exhibition.
Exhibition Gallery Highlights

“From Page to Screen” showcases an original first edition of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone encased in a Gringotts-inspired vault and is surrounded by video and literary quotes, reconnecting guests to the story as they are introduced to the exhibition.

“Hogwarts Castle” features an immersive multimedia experience with elements like the Whomping Willow, Dementors and the Marauder’s Map, where guests will see their name appear, prompting them to continue their exploration of the exhibition.

“The Great Hall” is a projection-mapped space that allows visitors to celebrate magical seasonal moments on its grounds.

Photo courtesy of Imagine Exhibitions.

The “Hogwarts Houses” gallery sets the foundation for the exhibition experience, allowing guests the opportunity to experience more personalized moments with the house they select during their preregistration. While guests may gravitate towards one house, this Gallery will enable visitors to experience all of the Hogwarts houses in a celebratory hall featuring the Sorting Hat while surrounded by designed house crests on meticulously created stained glass windows.

Photo courtesy of Harry Potter: The Exhibition.

Hogwarts “Classrooms” are filled with props, creatures and costumes. Visitors will interact with magical lessons and games through digital touchscreens to reveal behind-the-scenes secrets. They will brew potions in the Potions Classroom, predict the future in Divination, pot a mandrake in the Herbology Greenhouse, and use their digital wand to defeat a boggart in Defense Against the Dark Arts.

“Hagrid’s Hut & The Forbidden Forest” offers an interactive Patronus charm experience. Guests will then uncover creatures, such as Centaurs and Acromantula, hidden in the forest and explore inside a recreation of Hagrid’s Hut.

“Newt’s Suitcase” photo opportunity allows guests to step inside his enchanted case and be surrounded by creatures seen in the Fantastic Beasts films.

Photo courtesy of Harry Potter: The Exhibition.

An exclusive collection of Harry Potter: The Exhibition merchandise will be available for guests to celebrate their fandom through an assortment of themed collections that span the expanded Wizarding World. Fans can choose from a range of products such as apparel, jewelry and edible treats, including Chocolate Frogs and bottled Butterbeer, as well as rare collectible art from MinaLima, the graphic design duo on all Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts films.

In addition, MinaLima created a small number of two custom prints exclusive to this exhibition, one of which pays homage to Philadelphia, the host city — anchored by an image of The Franklin Institute. A limited-edition of 500 premium prints, hand-signed by Studio MinaLima founders Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima, this Philadelphia Print is intended to be displayed in conjunction with the Commemorative Exhibition Art Print.

Photo courtesy of Harry Potter: The Exhibition.

“We are so excited to be partnering with Imagine Exhibition and bringing the magic to Philadelphia and officially opening the doors to this awe-inspiring interactive experience,” said Peter van Roden, Senior Vice President of Warner Bros. Themed Entertainment. “This exhibition is an incredible way for Wizarding World fans to celebrate the world of Hogwarts and beyond — bringing them up close and personal with their favorite props, costumes, creatures, sets and more.”

“Harry Potter: The Exhibition brings iconic moments that are beloved by fans across the world to life in an immersive and innovative way, providing an experience like none other, and we are thrilled that The Franklin Institute is the first to host this incredible exhibition,” said Larry Dubinski, president and CEO of The Franklin Institute.

“We are humbled to be partnered with Warner Bros.Themed Entertainment to present an all-new extension of experiences celebrating the Wizarding World,” said Tom Zaller, president and CEO of Imagine Exhibitions. “Harry Potter: The Exhibition uses best-in-class immersive design and technology to deliver an unforgettable personalized experience, and we are so proud and excited to bring this exhibition to life.”

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