Photo Credit: HBO Max/Warner Bros.
Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts is here. On Saturday, the hotly-anticipated Harry Potter reunion special episode will stream globally, bringing together the central Harry Potter trio Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter), Emma Watson (Hermione Granger), and Rupert Grint (Ron Weasley) to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the first movie. (The 20th anniversary of the first book was back in June 2017.) Along with other members of the Harry Potter films' cast and crew, Radcliffe, Watson and Grint will visit Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter, talk about their experiences of working together on the eight movies, cry and hug a lot (naturally), and reminisce about the magical years. There's no host or special guests here, unlike that Friends reunion special. They will simply talk to each other.
Speaking of Friends: The Reunion, Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts also comes from HBO Max — the streaming service owned by the sister company of Harry Potter producer Warner Bros. Pictures — who seems to be making a habit of creating unscripted reunion specials out of big famous nostalgic properties to grow itself. It's an interesting growth hack. (HBO Max also released all 2021 Warner Bros. movies day-and-date on its service, which did not sit well with Hollywood players at all.) While Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts is an HBO Max original, it's been sold off to other broadcasters elsewhere since HBO Max is not available everywhere. With that, here's everything you need to know about the Harry Potter reunion special, including when and where to watch it.
The two-hour-long Harry Potter reunion special is out New Year's Day, January 1 worldwide. Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts will be available in India on January 1, the same day as the rest of the world.
In India, you can stream Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts starting 2:30pm IST on January 1.
That's not quite in line with its release time elsewhere. In the US, the Harry Potter reunion special will be available 12am PT / 3am ET.
That translates to 1:30pm IST, so Indian Harry Potter fans are having to wait an extra hour.
Earlier in December, HBO Max unveiled a 90-second trailer for the Harry Potter reunion special that gave fans a look at what they should expect. It finds the central trio and many more cast members at Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter, reflecting on the memories they made, talking about how they became a family, and revealing how they felt about their roles.
In addition to Radcliffe, Watson and Grint, the Harry Potter reunion special brings back Helena Bonham Carter (Bellatrix Lestrange), Robbie Coltrane (Hagrid), Jason Isaacs (Lucius Malfoy), Gary Oldman (Sirius Black), Imelda Staunton (Dolores Umbridge), Tom Felton (Draco Malfoy), James and Oliver Phelps (Fred and George Weasley), Mark Williams (Arthur Weasley), Bonnie Wright (Ginny Weasley), Alfred Enoch (Dean Thomas), Matthew Lewis (Neville Longbottom), Evanna Lynch (Luna Lovegood), and Ian Hart (Quirinus Quirrell) among others.
Franchise directors Chris Columbus, Alfonso Cuarón, Mike Newell and David Yates will also be present, alongside Harry Potter producer David Heyman. The controversial Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling is not involved with Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts, though she does appear through archival footage.
Amazon Prime Video is the streaming partner for the Harry Potter reunion special in India. You will need an Amazon Prime subscription that costs Rs. 179 per month, Rs. 459 each quarter, or Rs. 1,499 a year. Prime Video will release Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts an hour after its global premiere.
Naturally, the aforementioned HBO Max is the exclusive home of the Harry Potter reunion episode in the US. HBO Max costs $15 a month. Existing HBO on TV subscribers can upgrade to HBO Max at no additional cost.
HBO Max will also offer Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts in Spain and Nordic regions.
Sky Max, Sky Showcase, and its streaming counterpart NOW are the official broadcasters for the Harry Potter reunion special in the UK. On TV, Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts will air at 8pm GMT on Sky Showcase. If you can't wait till then, you can stream it on Sky and NOW from 8:05am GMT onwards. NOW starts at GBP 10 a month.
Foxtel's Binge, Foxtel Now, and Foxtel iQ will host the Harry Potter reunion special down under. Binge costs between AUD 10 and AUD 18 per month. Will be available in line with the rest of the world at 7:01pm AEDT.
As with all things HBO, Crave is the home for the Harry Potter reunion special up north. Crave starts at CAD 10 per month, but you'll need the HBO add-on that takes the price up to CAD 20 per month.
In Italy, the Harry Potter reunion special will be offered on NOW, Sky Uno, and Sky Cinema Harry Potter. HBO Go will host it in Portugal, and Amediateka — the home of all things HBO — in Russia.
The Harry Potter reunion special is coming to HBO Go in Central Europe. That includes Bosnia and Herzegoina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Macedonia, Montenegro, Poland, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, and Slovenia.