Wednesday, 20 August 2014

London Day 2: Warner Bros. Studio Tour

Warning: Once again, this may contain serious rambling and Fangirling.

So after the day in London, and a disastrous hotel stay (stagnant water from taps, unclean bedroom, and in all seriousness I was nearly knocked out by a shower head,) we headed to Warner Bros Studio Tour London - The Making of Harry Potter. This was the third time that I'd been to the studios where Harry Potter was filmed, needless to say it was amazing, and I could never get tired of going there.

Ultimately I've chosen not go on into huge detail here, but instead to suggest a few places that, if you get the opportunity to visit, you take a close look at these sites.
Firstly, the Great Hall, which without trying to spoil too much, is one of the first places you see upon arrival, everything is exactly how it was in the films, except on this set the long tables have been moved to the sides. It's also what's called a hot set, meaning that there are flames and it gets particularly warm inside. In each corner of the hall, there are costumes from each house as well, however I also want to point out that you only get 2 minutes on this set before you're moved on, so take photo's quickly!

Secondly, Stage J. Coincidentally (and honestly, it is purely coincidental) the set stages are named J and K. Stage J is basically a huge room filled with several of the best sets. These include the Gryffindor Common Room, Dumbledore's Office, the dormitory, and part of the Ministry of Magic. Within this there are countless props from the films too, such as the Philosopher's Stone, Hermione's Time Turner, the Deluminator, and the Golden Snitch - and that's in just one case. Here I do advise that you look at everything carefully, because there is a one way system, once you've moved on to the next thing, your not meant to go back.

The suggested time to take when going around the studios is 3 hours, but personally, I believe that you need longer than that, given that there is SO much to see. The aspect of rushing also comes hand in hand with the Back lot. The Back lot is essentially where some of the transport from the films is kept. Whilst the broomsticks are back on Stage J, the Knight Bus (yes, it actually is a 3 story bus), Sirius/Hagrid's Motorbike, and Mr Weasley's Ford Anglia are all out there. Additionally, you can see James and Lily Potter's house in Godric's Hollow, 4 Privet Drive, and numerous chess pieces from Wizard's Chess in the Philosopher's Stone. Butterbeer is also sold in this area - and it tastes amazing! Unfortunately I'd like to point out here that if you ask what's in it, they'll refuse to tell you. I'd advise that whilst your here, don't feel the need to rush as it's rather a quick area to get around. However, if you do get Butterbeer (which is £3 per cup), you're not allowed to drink it anywhere else.

Finally, if you've stuck with this until now - thank you, I'd like to just briefly discuss Diagon Alley and the shop. Diagon Alley is a very brief set to get through, and again it's one-way so you really need to be sure that you've finished looking before moving on. Usually in the summer, events take place here. Last year it was Summer Spells, and this it was Bludgers and Broomsticks. When you finally reach the end of the tour, an enormous shop awaits. The only thing I have to say here is beware of the prices. I spent £77 on only a few items this year and so it's by no means cheap. For any Harry Potter fan though, no matter how much you spend, whether it's a few pounds or in the hundreds (done both :( ), it is absolutely worth it.

That basically summarizes my trip within advice that I know I could have done with whilst at Warner Bros Studio Tour. I highly recommend that whether you're a Harry Potter fan or not that you take a visit, because you learn so much about films. 

I hate to break it to you, but unless plans are changed, the next post will be Potter-related too, so sorry if that's not your cup of tea.

Holly x 

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