Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows Part One was sort of saved in the editing room

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part One
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Director David Yates has been chatting about the challenge of trying to make a film without a proper ending to it.

Appreciating that all films can be made a lot better (or a lot worse!) in the editing room, the stories that tend to bubble up the most are when a film is ostensibly saved in post-production. Director David Yates has a tale to add to the list too, with the third of his Harry Potter movies – Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows Part I – being his case in point.

Yates is currently promoting his new movie, Pain Hustlers, that’s arriving in October. And he admitted that the decision to split Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows left them with a part one that simply didn’t have a final act.

He admits as such, telling Collider “the great challenge of that film was it didn’t actually have a third act”. See? Told you. Anyway, he talked about he and editor Mark Day trying to work through the fact that halfway through the story, “it kind of ran out of steam”.

The intent was to do a road movie of sorts that took the characters away from the safe (ahem) surroundings of their school. Day and Yates would sit in the editing suite trying to figure the film out, seemingly with a fair amount of trouble. In the end, “we noodled Part One to bits to try and feel that the end of the movie had an escalation, when, in fact, it’s jazz hands”.

Yates talks too about how people approach him now and say that the first part is their favourite of the Harry Potter film. I can’t say I’m one of them, although I do think there are moments in that film that are terrific. As for Pain Hustlers, it arrives on October 20th.

The Collider piece, with the full interview, is here.

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