Rowling has revealed a range of Potter details for fans to devour. On her website, Pottermore, Rowling continues to share Potter trivia, post-series information, and character backstories with a tidal wave of dissection at every single reveal. If you haven’t checked it out, Pottermore is an amazing resource.
Most of the time, the information is delightful, but sometimes Rowling lets it be known that she is not pleased with certain trends, like how many girls crush on Draco. (She’s not having it. He’s just a jerk, okay?) Or that maybe she goofed up that whole Hermoine married Ron thing. Twitter be like WHAAAAAAT?! When she revealed that a beloved character was gay, fans responded in overwhelming numbers of support. While others scratched their heads, Rowling let it be known that she is not tolerant of intolerance.
And while ending the Harry Potter series was sad, it was also a bit of a relief for Rowling. “It was this amazing cathartic moment… the end of 17 years’ work,” Rowling said. But with Pottermore, a 2016 Harry Potter play, and constant, rabid response to the world she created, Rowling will never abandon Harry. “He will always be a presence in my life, really.”
Rowling has said she may eventually reveal more details in a Harry Potter encyclopedia, but even then, it will never be enough to satisfy the most hardcore fans. “I’m dealing with a level of obsession in some of my fans that will not rest until they know the middle names of Harry’s great-great-grandparents,” she said. But the author is just fine with the outpouring of devotion for all things Harry Potter. “I love it,” she said. “I’m all for that.”
Fans can certainly get their Potter-adjacent fix with Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts series. The series takes us back 90 years before Harry and follows the adventures of Newt Scamander, magizoologist and proud Hufflepuff.
So fulfill your Harry Potter obsession with this list of all the facts Rowling has revealed on Pottermore, in interviews, an on social media about your favorite fictional world. Be sure to upvote the most interesting and revelatory facts about Potter and head to the comments section to let your own opinion on Ron and Hermione’s relationship be known!
Alan Rickman Took This Acting Tip from J.K. Rowling to His Grave
In a 2011 interview with RTÉ, Alan Rickman revealed that J.K. Rowling had given him a little tidbit of advice for how to play Professor Snape onscreen. He said, “She gave me one little piece of information, which I always said I would never share with anybody and neve have, and never will. It wasn’t a plot point, or crucial in any tangible way, but it was crucial to me as a piece of information that made me travel down that road rather than that one or that one or that one.”
After Rickman’s death in January 2016, fans were dying to know what that piece of information was that Rickman took to his grave. Rowling decided to alleviate the pain of mourning fans by letting them know Rickman’s greatest secret.
“I told Alan what lies behind the word always,” Rowling responded to a Twitter fan. This means that, while the other characters in Harry Potter had no idea what the ending of the book – or film – series would be, Alan Rickman knew what was in store for his character all the while.
For those who aren’t familiar with what the word “always” symbolizes in Harry Potter, it’s a quote from Professor Snape’s character that really shapes the good guy side of Snape that readers rarely see. We spend the entire series thinking that Snape is a huge jerk, especially when he outright murders Dumbledore in front of Harry. But it turns out that Snape’s best-kept secret was that he was actually a real softie all along.
Snape has been in love with Harry Potter’s mom, Lily Potter (neé Evans), ever since they were children. When Dumbledore finds out that Snape is still in love with Lily Potter – even after her untimely death at the hands of Lord Voldemort – he asks him, “Really Severus? After all this time?” and Snape replies, “Always.”
Rowling explained this to Rickman early on, so that he could always act the way that his character was intended to – with tons of loving care for Harry Potter layered underneath a sheen of sarcasm and feigned hatred of his arrogance.
Wait, What? Harry and Voldemort Are Related?
Tom Riddle, aka Voldemort, was also related to the Peverells. This is why he had the Resurrection Stone. There are hints in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, but it’s not super obvious.
Blood is not thicker than Death Eaters, apparently.
She Didn't Enjoy Killing Off Remus Lupin
In a series of tweets, Rowling said: “Once again, it’s the anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts so, as promised, I shall [apologize] for a death. This year: Remus Lupin… In the interests of total honesty I’d also like to confess that I didn’t decide to kill Lupin until I wrote Order of the Phoenix.”
She continued, “Arthur lived, so Lupin had to die. I’m sorry. I didn’t enjoy doing it. The only time my editor ever saw me cry was over the fate of Teddy.”
Harry, Hermione, and Ron Appear on Frog Cards
Harry’s card says: “The first and only known wizard to survive the Killing Curse, most famous for the defeat of the most dangerous dark wizard of all time, Lord Voldemort.”
Hermione’s card says: “The brightest witch of her age, who eradicated pro-pureblood laws and campaigned for the rights of non-human beings such as house-elves.”
Ron’s card says: “Destroying the Horcruxes and subsequent defeat of Voldemort and revolutionising the Ministry of Magic.”
Ron, an ardent card collector, considered this to be one of the greatest achievements of all time. This is also why Ron is beloved. The revelation had fans saying, “awww.”
Luna Lovegood Marries the Grandson of Newt Scamander
Harry’s lovely, fearless, ethereal, and odd friend had a love for imaginary and real animals. So, it’s no surprise that she ended up becoming a famous wizarding naturalist married to the grandson of Newt Scamander, Rolf. Scamander, you’ll recall, authored Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
Who better to find them than Luna Lovegood?
Source: Beyond Hogwarts
Dumbledore Could See Harry in the Invisibility Cloak
Ron and Arthur Weasley Were Both Almost Killed Off
In the final film’s extra features, Rowling told Daniel Radcliffe about her dark thoughts. “I started thinking I might polish one of them off. Out of sheer spite. ‘There, now you definitely can’t have him any more.’ But I think in my absolute heart of heart of hearts, although I did seriously consider killing Ron, [I wouldn’t have done it].”
Arthur very nearly died from an attack by Voldemort the snake but he made it through because “there were very few good fathers in the book. In fact, you could make a very good case for Arthur Weasley being the only good father in the whole series,” Rowling said.
Rowling, however, found it necessary to kill at least one of the Weasleys. Sorry, Fred.
Draco Married Up in the Best Possible Way
Draco, however, did not end up a bitter old Slytherin talking about the good ol’ days when he was almost somebody in the Dark Lord’s world. Possibly in a subconscious move to break the pattern of hate, he married Astoria Greengrass, who may have helped the warped boy become a better man. She does not share her in-laws’ obsession with pure blood and is dead set on raising her child differently than they raised her husband, according to Rowling.
This did not exactly go over well with Lucius and Narcissa. “As Astoria refused to raise their grandson Scorpius in the belief that Muggles were scum, family gatherings were fraught with tension,” Rowling wrote.
The Potterverse Has Two 'Harry Potters'
This lead to the Potter family’s exclusion from the Sacred Twenty-Eight, a group of pureblood families.
As a Film, Fantastic Beasts Was an Accident
Hogwarts Is Located in Scotland
As for the doodles, Rowling thought it quite natural to put them in. “That’s Harry and Ron graffiti-ing the book, as you do to your schoolbooks. You do doodle on them, I always wrote all over mine. Teachers reading this will not be happy that I’m saying it but you do, don’t you? So they’ve just scribbled things on them and said rude things in them, the name of their favourite Quidditch team and stuff in the book,” she explained.
Dolores Umbridge Is Based on a Real Person and J.K. Rowling Totes Can’t Stand Her
The reason that we all love to hate Dolores Umbridge so much is that Rowling truly conjured the essence of the real woman. “Why we took against each other so instantly, heartily and (on my side, at least) irrationally, I honestly cannot say.” Rowling said that real life Umbridge also had loads pictures of kittens on her office walls.
Umbridge is just as dark and nasty as Voldemort and it’s no accident. “Her desire to control, to punish, and to inflict pain, all in the name of law and order, are, I think, every bit as reprehensible as Lord Voldemort’s unvarnished espousal of evil,” Rowling said. “Umbridge is not only one of the most malicious Potter characters – she is the only person other than Lord Voldemort to leave a permanent physical scar on Harry.”
Umbridge proves that nose or not, evil is just as vile in a fuzzy, pink dress set.
Post-Hogwarts, Ron and Harry Did All Right
Rowling said, “He’s needed. Kingsley [Shacklebolt, Minister of Magic] would’ve wanted Ron, Neville, Harry and they would’ve all gone, and they would’ve all done the job. And I think that that would’ve been a good thing for them, too.”
Although Neville ends up teaching herbology, certainly Harry and Ron would need his expertise now and again. Especially if they ever needed someone to cast a mad spell in a cardigan.
Ron didn’t last long as an Auror. Ron left his job at the Ministry to “co-manage the highly successful wizarding joke emporium Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes.”
We’re sure Hermione was totally cool with that.
Sources: Telegraph, TIME
Harry and Dudley Meet Again and Make Amends (Sort Of)
In a deleted scene from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1, Dudley has a comical, nearly moving moment of defying his crap parents. In his less than eloquent way, Dudley redeemed some of the terrible treatment of Harry by saying, “I don’t think you’re a waste of space.”
To which Harry says, “See ya, Big D.”
It’s a start.
Sources: Telegraph, Mental Floss
Tonks and Lupin Were Part of Rowling’s "Kill Parents" Campaign
Rowling did feel real remorse. “Fred, Lupin, and Tonks really caused me a lot of pain. Lupin and Tonks were two who were killed who I had intended to keep alive. It’s like an exchange of hostages, isn’t it?”
So if you’re a new reader of the Harry Potter series, be prepared for some dark stuff. Rowling is a gangster.
Harry Made Sure That Snape Was Honored
One of the final things Harry says in the last book is: “Albus Severus, you were named for two headmasters of Hogwarts. One of them was a Slytherin and he was probably the bravest man I ever knew.” Besides that great honor, Harry went further.
Rowling revealed Harry made sure that a portrait of the misunderstood professor was placed in the Headmaster’s office at Hogwarts. She explained in a webchat, “I like to think that Harry would be instrumental in ensuring that Snape’s portrait would appear there in due course.”
Sources: Telegraph, Mental Floss
Check out more Harry Potter tidbits that you probably never knew here.
JK Rowling Feels Bad About Killing Dobby
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) May 2, 2018JK Rowling tweets each year on May 2 to remind fans it’s the anniversary of the Battle of Hogwarts. Typically, she tweets about a beloved character who lost their life at some point in the book series. In 2018, she addressed the death of everyone’s favorite housewife, Dobby.
While she did not say she regretted killing the free elf who idolized Harry Potter, she did apologize to fans for his passing.
Fantastic Beasts Started Out as a Book Written for Charity
Before the film version debuted, Rowling and star Eddie Redmayne also attended a special screeningto benefit Lumos Foundation USA (partnered with Warner Bros. and Scholastic) on Nov. 12, 2016 at Carnegie Hall. Lumos helps children in orphanages “regain their right to a family.”
Initially, it was Comic Relief that inspired her to put Fantastic Beasts (as well as Quidditch Through the Ages) together. “I always write more than I need for the books so bits of them were just written for my own fun,” Rowling told Raincoast, “I always write more than I need for the books so bits of them were just written for my own fun. So when Comic Relief asked me to write something I thought I would just love to write them, I just thought it would be so much fun and I was completely correct. It was more fun than I’ve had writing the others.”
Harry's Family Tree Stretches Back to the Middle Ages
Source: The Guardian
Harry Got Sirius Black’s Bike Thanks to Arthur Weasley
Source: Mental Floss
Neville Turns Out Finer Than Fine and Becomes a Verb
And “Longbottomed” is now a verb for when someone goes from awkward to stone cold fox. Actor Matthew Lewis posed for a spread in a magazine in nothing but his drawers. The child with the overbite had grown into such hotness, Lewis’s shoot nearly broke the internet. Rowling was a bit freaked out when she saw someone she had known as a child in such a revealing way.
Rowling may have told Matthew Lewis to put some pants on but we’re okay with it. Not sorry, Jo.
Source: E! Online
Why Are the Dursleys So Rotten to Harry?
Since the very first time they met James Potter, Petunia and Vernon’s jealousy compounded from their established envy of Lily. Upon meeting his future brother-in-law, Vernon makes a crack about how James and Lily are probably on the dole. Not true. James explains Gringotts and the magical world’s banking system. Vernon is instantly intimidated.
Plus, because Harry reminds Vernon very much of his father, Vernon transfer his insecurities and resentment to the boy. Also, Petunia was always envious of her sister’s powerful skills and magical ability to find a hot husband. Rowling has said that she thought about redeeming Petunia but decided to keep her unchanged and unbowed to the very end.
Rowling Was Unnerved by Love of Draco
She goes on to express caution against romanticizing the “dark glamour of the anti-hero.” When fans swoon and try to disagree, Rowling stands her ground. “Draco was not concealing a heart of gold under all that sneering and prejudice.” Rowling also says that “he and Harry were not destined to end up best friends.”
Just look at those parents of his. Ooof.
Hogwarts 19 Years Later
Source: Beyond Hogwarts
But Why Was Dolores Umbridge So Evil, Though?
Bummer Alert: Neville’s Parents Never Recover
“I know people really wanted some hope for that, and I can quite see why because, in a way, what happens to Neville’s parents is even worse than what happened to Harry’s parents. The damage that is done, in some cases with very dark magic, is done permanently,” Rowling said.