1. Headline
  1. Headline
Image: Harry Potter fans gather at Trafalgar Square
Kerim Okten  /  EPA
Harry Potter fans gather a day before of the premiere of 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2' at Trafalgar Square in London.
Hollywood Reporter
updated 7/7/2011 9:04:41 AM ET 2011-07-07T13:04:41

Magicians, fan boys and muggles of all ages and sizes begun gathering in London’s Trafalgar Square and the surrounding streets Wednesday -- more than 24 hours before the world premiere of the final installment of the Harry Potter franchise, "Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows – Part 2."

PHOTOS: Inside Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 

Some 8,000 wristbands have been handed out Wednesday morning to fans allowing them access to the sidelines for the premiere event Thursday evening.

Slideshow: 'Harry Potter' world premiere (on this page)
  1. More Entertainment stories
    1. Autistic ballerina dances her way into hearts

      In a popular YouTube video, the beaming little ballerina dances an entire four-minute routine seemingly perfectly, matchin...

    2. Every on-screen drink in 'Mad Men' in 5 minutes
    3. See the 'Dancing' stars' most memorable moves
    4. Emmy's biggest snubs? Cranston, Hamm, more
    5. 'Toy Story' toys burn up in prank on mom

BBC London reports showed scenes of more than 3,000 Harry Potter enthusiasts setting themselves up with sleeping bags and makeshift cardboard mattresses to be in with a shot of glimpsing the film’s stars and author J.K. Rowling.

PHOTOS: Harry Potter stars hit the London premiere

Daniel Radcliffe, who plays Potter, is taking time off from appearing in a Broadway musical to attend, along with Hermione Granger actress Emma Watson and Rupert Grint, who plays Ron Weasley.

Video: Watch the 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2' trailer (on this page)

The three are a big draw for the red carpet watchers and the global media is expected to take its places Thursday afternoon along the red carpet route that winds from London’s Trafalgar Square to Leicester Square’s three biggest movie venues where the final outing will be shown in 3D to invitees.

Story: Fans vow 'Pottermania' will endure

Nineteen-year-old sisters Emily and Nic Holson have come all the way from Vancouver.

“It’s great to be with all the really geeky people,” the pair told the BBC. “This is the only place in the world where that could happen and it not be weird."

PHOTOS: Summer's biggest blockbusters 

The weather forecast of wet and windy weather and the lack of washroom facilities seems to have done little to dent the enthusiasm of fans prepared to wait overnight alongside the route to the screenings.

    1. 'Deathly Hallows 2' a fittingly grand farewell
      Warner Bros.
    2. 'Potter' fans, at premieres and parties
    3. See Harry Potter grow up in a minute
    4. Daniel Radcliffe: ‘Happier’ after year of sobriety
    5. 'Potter' works new charms with $43M overseas

And police have banned tents from the historic central London square so it will only be the hardiest who make it through what looks likely to be an uncomfortable night.

Gallery: Meet the characters of 'Harry Potter' (on this page)

The premiere, marking the last installment in one of the most successful franchises in history with the previous seven films taking more than £3.6 billion ($6.4 billion) at the global box office according to Rentrak EDI, is being billed as the biggest world debut event held in the U.K.

Warner Bros. Pictures sparked a web frenzy in March this year when it announced plans to mount the event in London and set the date.

Video: Watch Hermione grow up before your eyes (on this page)

The claim is it is the first red carpet film premiere event to start in Trafalgar Square, a part of the British capital instantly recognizable to global audiences.

Video: Harry Potter's journey (on this page)

It is being held there because Leicester Square is undergoing a multi-million facelift and is closed for that reason.

The final movie rolls out in the U.K. and the U.S. on July 15 and is the first Potter outing to be aired in a 3D version and also in 2D.

The penultimate Potter adventure, "Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows – Part 1" was released in November 2010 and was described by critics and fans as a slow-paced scene-setter.

VIDEO: Highest-grossing films of 2010 

Directed by David Yates, who has shot three of the previous seven films, including Deathly Hallows Part 1, which was made at the same time, the film promises explosive action and the final battle between Potter and nemesis Lord Voldemort.

The producers are David Heyman, the producer of all of the Harry Potter films, David Barron who has produced six of the films and creator Rowling.

Steve Kloves adapted the screenplay. Lionel Wigram is the executive producer, with John Trehy and Tim Lewis as co-producers.

Ready for the final "Harry Potter" film, or are you sick to death of the little wizard? Discuss on our Facebook page.

Copyright 2012 The Hollywood Reporter

Video: Watch the 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2' trailer

Gallery: Meet the characters of 'Harry Potter'

Monsters and wizards and witches, oh my! Get the scoop on everyone from the boy wizard himself to his friends, teachers, and enemies

Photos: 'Harry Potter' world premiere

loading photos...
  1. Daniel Radcliffe

    Daniel Radcliffe walks the red carpet at the "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2" premiere at London's Trafalgar Square on Thursday, July 7. The actor has starred in all eight films since being cast at age 11. He recently revealed he's given up alcohol after abusing it while making the film series. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  2. Emma Watson

    Hermione Granger is all grown up. Emma Watson dazzled in a grey Oscar De La Renta ruffled gown at the world premiere. She's believed to be planning to study at Oxford University now that the film series is finished. (Dylan Martinez / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  3. Rupert Grint

    Rupert Grint played Ron Weasley, Harry and Hermione's pal, in the series. His large redheaded family also played an important role in the saga. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  4. J.K. Rowling

    J.K. Rowling went from a single mother on welfare to one of the world's richest women thanks to authoring the Potter book series. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  5. Helena Bonham Carter

    Helena Bonham Carter plays Bellatrix Lestrange, one of evil Voldemort's cohorts, in the films. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  6. Alan Rickman

    Alan Rickman plays Severus Snape in the series, a pivotal character whose motives may not always be what they seem. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  7. One big party

    Crowds fill Trafalgar Square in London hoping to see the "Potter" stars. Some waited for days in a downpour and with limited bathroom facilities to watch the events unfold. (Joel Ryan / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  8. Tom Felton

    Tom Felton plays Draco Malfoy, Harry's school nemesis, in the films. He recently told the Daily Mail that the young cast members know they weren't chosen for acting skill, but because they resembled the characters Rowling created. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  9. Carrying on

    A fan holds up a placard playing off the famed World War II admonition "Keep Calm and Carry On." (Toby Melville / Reuters) Back to slideshow navigation
  10. Robbie Coltrane

    Robbie Coltrane plays the gentle giant Hagrid, who helps Harry, Hermione and Ron while they're at Hogwarts. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  11. James and Oliver Phelps

    Twin actors James and Oliver Phelps play twins Fred and George Weasley in the film series. They're identical, but Oliver has a mole on the right side of his neck and James does not. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  12. Natalia Tena

    Natalia Tena plays Nymphadora Tonks in the films. Her character marries and has a son during the series. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  13. Helen McCrory

    Helen McCrory plays Narcissa Malfoy. She originally cast as Narcissa's sister, Bellatrix Lestrange, but due to pregnancy had to give that role to Helena Bonham Carter. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  14. Bonnie Wright

    Bonnie Wright plays the character most young female "Potter" readers envy most -- Ginny Weasley, who eventually weds Harry. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  15. Flying the colors

    Harry Potter fans clutch books they're hoping to have autographed. Their faces are painted in scarlet and gold, the colors of Gryffindor, Harry's house at Hogwarts. (Joel Ryan / AP) Back to slideshow navigation
  16. Clemence Poesy

    Clemence Poesy plays Fleur Delacour, and in the film series, she weds Ron's brother, Bill. (Dave M. Benett / Getty Images Contributor) Back to slideshow navigation
  17. Jamie Campbell Bower

    Jamie Campbell Bower plays a young Gellert Grindelwald in the last two films. The actor also appears in another enormously popular film franchise, the "Twilight" series. (Dave M. Benett / Getty Images Contributor) Back to slideshow navigation
  18. Warrick Davis and family

    Warrick Davis poses with his family on the red carpet. He plays both Griphook and Flitwick in the series, and also worked as a casting agent to find additional little people to play goblins in the films. He also starred in "Willow," and plays an Ewok in the "Star Wars" series. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  19. Evanna Lynch

    Evanna Lynch plays Luna Lovegood, a loony Hogwarts student who plays an important role in the book. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  20. Michael Gambon

    Michael Gambon replaced the late Richard Harris as beloved Hogwarts headmaster Albus Dumbledore. Harris, who passed away in 2002 at age 72, took the role in the first two films, and Gambon played him in the remaining movies. (Ian Gavan / Getty Images) Back to slideshow navigation
  1. Editor's note:
    This image contains graphic content that some viewers may find disturbing.

    Click to view the image, or use the buttons above to navigate away.

  2. Editor's note:
    This image contains graphic content that some viewers may find disturbing.

    Click to view the image, or use the buttons above to navigate away.

  3. Editor's note:
    This image contains graphic content that some viewers may find disturbing.

    Click to view the image, or use the buttons above to navigate away.

  4. Editor's note:
    This image contains graphic content that some viewers may find disturbing.

    Click to view the image, or use the buttons above to navigate away.

  1. Image: Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows - Part 2 - World Film Premiere
    Ian Gavan / Getty Images
    Above: Slideshow (20) 'Harry Potter' world premiere
  2. Image:
    Universal Pictures
    Slideshow (22) Summer blockbusters

More on TODAY.com

  1. Getty Images

    Jenna Bush Hager, celebs remember Oscar de la Renta with adoration

    10/21/2014 1:36:20 PM +00:00 2014-10-21T13:36:20
  1. Ebola outbreak: West Africans must arrive at 5 U.S. airports

    All travelers from Ebola-stricken countries in West Africa must pass through one of five major U.S. airports with heightened entry screening before entering the country, the Department of Homeland Security said Tuesday.

    10/21/2014 4:22:36 PM +00:00 2014-10-21T16:22:36
  1. Car owners warned about exploding air bags

    video The federal government is urging nearly 5 million people to get the air bags in their cars repaired because they pose a potentially deadly risk in the event of an accident. NBC’s Tom Costello reports.

    10/21/2014 11:36:09 AM +00:00 2014-10-21T11:36:09