Great news tonight for anyone who’s really been hurting for pictures of some relatively adjusted thirtysomethings sitting in a fake castle together: HBO Max has just released the first pictures from its upcoming Harry Potter retrospective, Return To Hogwarts. And, wouldn’t you know it: There they are, franchise stars Daniel Radcliffe (Harry Potter), Emma Watson (Harry Potter), and Rupert Grint (Thunderpants), sitting on a weird faux-medieval soundstage together, just like old times.
HBO Max announced the special last month, as part of its ongoing efforts to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the Harry Potter film franchise (and only the Harry Potter film franchise—J.K. Rowling’s name appears in the press release accompanying the photos exactly once). Said special will reunite Radcliffe, Watson, and Grint together on camera for one of the first times since the release of Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows Pt. 2, allowing them to all agree that, yes, it’s perfectly nice to see each other.
(And now we’re once again spinning our brains at the fact that these former youths have been having “Oh, hey former office mate I feel cordial toward but am not actually friends with” interactions since they were like 21.)
In addition to the three stars in the photo, the special will also draw on a deep bench of Harry Potter related folks (who are not widely derided transphobe J.K. Rowling), including Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Ralph Fiennes, Jason Isaacs, Gary Oldman, Tom Felton, James Phelps, Oliver Phelps, Mark Williams, Bonnie Wright, Alfred Enoch, Matthew Lewis, and Evanna Lynch.
Return To Hogwarts will air on HBO Max on January 1. Meanwhile, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets Of Dumbledore—produced, like the special, by Warner Media, and co-written by widely derided transphobe J.K. Rowling—is currently set for an April 15, 2022 release date in the United States.