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26. Quidditch World Cup '14 Quarter Finals: Japan vs. Nigeria

The results for the Japan versus Nigeria quarter finals match are now available to read on Pottermore. Additionally, news on the return of Liechtenstein's mascot, Hans the augury, was posted last night in the Daily Prophet section of Pottermore.

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27. Food Options in Diagon Alley Expansion Revealed

More details on what you can expect to eat - and drink! - at the Diagon Alley expansion at Universal Studios Florida have been revealed. The menu for the Leaky Cauldron appears to be traditional British fare, while the drink options veer more into the magical and fantastical. Read here or below for the Leaky Cauldron food and beverage options, as well as the flavors you can expect to find at Florean Fortescue's ice cream parlor:

First up is the Leaky Cauldron – where I got to take a sneak peek earlier this week.  It looks just like it does in the films…all the way down to the huge cauldron that sits in the middle of the restaurant.  Here, you’ll be able to enjoy delicious British fare like…

Bangers and Mash (traditional roasted sausages with creamy mashed potatoes)
Toad in the Hole (traditional sausage baked into a Yorkshire pudding and served with onion gravy)
Cottage Pie (a savory combination of meat and vegetables in a potato crust)
Fisherman’s Pie (salmon, shrimp and cod baked together under a potato crust)
Beef, Lamb & Guinness Stew (served in a bread bowl)
Ploughman’s (a feast of English cheeses, crusty bread, cornichon pickles, apple beet salad, Branston pickle and a Scotch egg)
Split Pea Soup
Banger Pub Style Sandwich
Fish and Chips
And more!

And you can finish off your meal with scrumptious desserts like Chocolate Potted Cream, Cranachan and Sticky Toffee Pudding.  There will also be breakfast served at the Leaky Cauldron with two new breakfast items, only available at Diagon Alley: an Apple Oatmeal Flan with Yogurt and Fruit and an Egg, Leek and Mushroom Pasty.

There will also be new beverages for you to enjoy in Diagon Alley like:

Fishy Green Ale (it’s Fishy Green Ale, use your imagination!)
Otter’s Fizzy Orange Juice
Tongue Tying Lemon Squash
Peachtree Fizzing Tea
Wizard’s Brew (draught beer)
Dragon Scale (draught beer)
Gillywater
Pumpkin Juice
Butterbeer (of course!)

Another must-stop during your trip to Diagon Alley will be Eternelle’s Elixir of Refreshment, a cart located in Horizont Alley, where you can enjoy unique elixirs. Here’s how it works:  you select from a variety of elixirs like Draught of Peace, Babbling Beverage, Elixir to Induce Euphoria and Fire Protection Potion, and then add the elixir to Gillywater.  By mixing them, you’ll see your drink transform before your eyes and experience a delightful flavor surprise. Too cool!

And of course, to top it all off, you have Florean Fortescue’s Ice-Cream Parlour. You may remember Florean Fortescue’s from the first book and film “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” when Hagrid bought Harry a chocolate and raspberry ice-cream with chopped nuts. You’ll be able to do the same with unique flavors of ice-cream like…

Granny Smith 
Earl Grey and Lavender
Chocolate Chili
Clotted Cream
Apple Crumble
Sticky Toffee Pudding
Salted Caramel Blondie
Chocolate and Raspberry
Strawberry and Peanut-Butter
Orange Marmalade
Butterbeer (that’s right, Butterbeer-flavored ice cream!)

You can read more here.

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28. Pottermore's USA vs Liechtenstein Quarter Final Results

Pottermore has posted the result for June 8th Quidditch World Cup quarter finals between the United States and Liechtenstein. Mrs. Ginny Potter also reported breaking news on a kidnapping as apart of the celebration by the victors of this match. Take a look at the Daily Profit on Pottermore to read more.

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29. Quidditch World Cup '14 Quarter Finals: Bulgaria vs. Norway

The results of the very brief match between Bulgaria and Norway are now available to read on Pottermore. Go to the Daily Prophet section to see which team is advancing.

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30. Michael Gambon to Star in "The Casual Vacancy" Mini-Series

Harry Potter film alum Michael Gambon will be portraying Howard Mollison in the BBC adaptation of J. K. Rowling's novel, "The Casual Vacancy." Simon McBurney, who voiced Kreacher in "Deathly Hallows" will also be starring in the mini-series:

Dumbledore and J.K. Rowling are reunited once again! Well, kind of.

The BBC and HBO have announced the cast for the upcoming miniseries adaptation of J.K. Rowling’s novel The Casual Vacancy. Leading the cast is Michael Gambon (Harry Potter) as Howard Mollison, as well as Keeley Hawes (Line of Duty, Ashes To Ashes), Rory Kinnear (Skyfall, Penny Dreadful), Monica Dolan (Alan Partridge: Alpha Papa), Julia McKenzie (Notes on a Scandal), and newcomer Abigail Lawrie.

The story focuses on a local election in Pagford after a sudden death.

You can read more here.

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31. Happy Birthday, Draco Malfoy!

June 5th marks the birthday of Draco Malfoy! Please join Leaky in wishing a happy birthday to our favorite Slytherin student.

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32. More Released about Entertainment in Universal's Diagon Alley

Universal Orlando Theme Parks has released more information about entertainment experiences that will be hosted at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter Diagon Alley. Two shows will be exclusively featured in the park. The first is a puppeteer performance of two stories from the Tales of Beedle the Bard: "The Fountain of Fair Fortune" and "The Tale of the Three Brothers". The second show will be a musical performance by Molly Weasley's favorite "wizard rock" singer: Celestina Warbeck and the Banshees. Molly Weasley's favorite tunes, “A Cauldron Full of Hot, Strong Love,” “You Stole My Cauldron But You Can’t Have My Heart,” and “You Charmed the Heart Right Out Of Me,” are to be performed. Thanks to LeakyNews for the heads up, pictures of the incredibly detailed puppets may be seen here at LeakyNews. LeakyNews also reported interactive experiences with a Knight Bus conductor that greets visitors upon entering Diagon Alley, much like the Hogsmeade Hogwarts Express Conductor, and exchanging Muggle money for Wizard Galleons, Sickles, and Knuts, at Gringotts to be used around both parks. Details on how currency exchange works with Wizarding money, and how it will be used, are still being worked out.

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33. More Released about Entertainment in Universal's Diagon Alley

Universal Orlando Theme Parks has released more information about entertainment experiences that will be hosted at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter Diagon Alley. Two shows will be exclusively featured in the park. The first is a puppeteer performance of two stories from the Tales of Beedle the Bard: "The Fountain of Fair Fortune" and "The Tale of the Three Brothers". The second show will be a musical performance by Molly Weasley's favorite "wizard rock" singer: Celestina Warbeck and the Banshees. Molly Weasley's favorite tunes, “A Cauldron Full of Hot, Strong Love,” “You Stole My Cauldron But You Can’t Have My Heart,” and “You Charmed the Heart Right Out Of Me,” are to be performed. Thanks to LeakyNews for the heads up, pictures of the incredibly detailed puppets can be seen here at LeakyNews. LeakyNews also reported interactive experiences with a Knight Bus conductor that greets visitors upon entering Diagon Alley, much like the Hogsmeade Hogwarts Express Conductor, and exchanging Muggle money for Wizard Galleons, Sickles, and Knuts, at Gringotts to be used around both parks. Details on how currency exchange works with Wizarding money, and how it will be used, are still being worked out.

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34. Ten Year Anniversary of the Premiere of "Prisoner of Azkaban"

Today marks the ten year anniversary of the day "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban" was released in theatres in the US. It marked the first change in directors - from Chris Columbus to Alfonso Cuaron - and was also the first Harry Potter film to be shown in IMAX, as well as the first Harry Potter film to be released in the summertime. Michael Gambon made his first appearance as Professor Dumbledore as, sadly, Richard Harris had passed away in 2002.


"Prisoner of Azkaban" tends to be one of the more divisive of the Harry Potter films: fans tend to either love it or hate it. Now that we're ten years out from the release, do you still feel the same way you did as when you first saw it? You can watch the trailer here or below to take a few minutes to remember your impressions.


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35. Quidditch World Cup '14 Quarter Finals: Brazil vs. Wales

The quarter finals of the 2014 Quidditch World Cup have begun! Head over to the Daily Prophet section of Pottermore to see who advanced in the Brazil versus Wales match.

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36. J.K. Rowling tweets about release of "The Silkworm", Plus Exclusive Excerpt

As reported previously, Robert Galbraith, J.K. Rowling's "very, very close author friend", is releasing The Silkworm on June 19. The Silkworm is the second crime novel in Galbraith/Rowling's Cormoron Strike mystery series. With the approach of the release date, J.K. Rowling has tweeted about the many places to buy her new book, and about Third Place Books who will hand deliver the book to customers. These tweets can be seen below, or hereAccording to USA Today, Little Brown Book Group UK also released an exclusive excerpt of the soon to be published Silkworm. This gift from Galbraith and J.K. Rowling may be read here.

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37. Announcing the Leaky Sweepstakes to Preview Universal Diagon Alley!

Can't wait to get to Diagon Alley this summer? Neither can we. And now we are happy to announce that Universal is sending a winner from the Leaky Cauldron and three of his or her friends to Universal Orlando Resort to check it out early. Entry is free and easy and all the info is below:


Universal Orlando is giving readers of The Leaky Cauldron a chance to win a VIP trip for four to Universal Orlando® Resort!

Entry is free and easy: you can do it via the widget below. Followers of The Leaky Cauldron will receive added entries. Also, from now through June 8, you can enter by tweeting about the sweepstakes.

The grand prize is as follows:

A VIP Preview trip for four to Universal Orlando® Resort. Step into the magic and excitement of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ - Hogsmeade™ at Universal's Islands of Adventure®, and, beginning Summer, 2014, explore Diagon Alley™ in Universal Studios Florida® and travel from one land to the other with a Park-to-Park admission ticket on the Hogwarts™ Express. 

GRAND PRIZE INCLUDES:

  • Round-trip airfare to Orlando, Florida
  • Ground transportation between the airport and hotel in Orlando
  • Admission to both Universal Studios Florida® and Universal's Islands of Adventure® theme parks, including Early Park Admission* to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ one hour before the parks open
  • Accommodations on-site at Universal's Cabana Bay Beach Resort
  • Tickets to Blue Man Group
  • Admission to Wet 'n Wild® Orlando waterpark
  • PLUS, attendance at a VIP Preview of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter™ - Diagon Alley™

For more information on Universal Orlando® Resort and for great deals on vacation packages, click here!

The sweepstakes will run from June 3 to June 8, 2014. The winner will be chosen at random. You can enter for your chance to win via following instructions in the widget below! Please note that you must be 18 to enter and that one member of the traveling party must be over 21 in order to check into the hotel. This sweepstakes is only open to legal residents of the 48 contiguous United States and Washington D.C. (excluding Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, Peruto Rico, and all other U.S. territories and possessions), who are physically located and residing therin.

HARRY POTTER, characters, names and related indicia are trademarks of and @ Warner Bros. Entertainment Inc. Harry Potter Publishing Rights @ JKR.

(s14)

*Early Park Admission begins one (1) hour prior to regularly scheduled park opening to one (1) Universal Orlando theme park as determined by Universal Orlando. Valid at select attractions at each park. @2014 BMP. @ 2014 Wet 'n Wild. All rights reserved. Cabana Bay Beach Resort @ 2014 UCF Hotel Venture II. All rights reserved. Universal elements and all related indicia. TM & @ 2014 Universal Studios. All rights reserved.

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38. Alfonso Cuaron Has No Plans to Direct "Fantastic Beasts"

Unfortunately, rumors that Alfonso Cuaron would direct "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" turned out to be just that. The "Prisoner of Azkaban" director was recently interviewed about his upcoming projects and said that he currently has "no plans of any kind":

"It was a very beautiful experience for me. I have a lot of love for that universe and I tremendously admire J.K. Rowling, but today, for the present, projects based around lots of visual effects don't attract me. I'm coming out of a five-year process of doing visual effects and now I sort of want to clean my palate of that a little bit," the director said.


You can read more here.

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39. Quidditch World Cup '14: Wales vs. Germany

The results of the final game of the first round of the Quidditch World Cup are now available to read on Pottermore. Find out whether Wales or Germany won here.

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40. Quidditch World Cup '14: Japan vs. Poland

The results of the Japan versus Poland match are now available to read on Pottermore. Find out who won by reading Ginny Potter's article on the match here.

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41. Quidditch World Cup '14: Bulgaria vs. New Zealand

Ginny Potter's report on the Bulgaria versus New Zealand match is now available to read on Pottermore. Find out how Viktor Krum, who came out of retirement to play in the World Cup, performed in the game here.

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42. Alfonso Cuaron May Direct "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them"

Alfonso Cuaron, who directed "Prisoner of Azkaban" is reportedly in "deep in talks" to direct the first movie of the planned "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" trilogy:

There’s nothing official yet, but fans of the film Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban may have a big reason to anticipate the new Harry Potter spin-off film, Fantastic Beasts & Where to Find Them. Reports this morning say that Alfonso Cuarón, fresh off the triumph of Gravity, is readying a return to the Potter franchise. He’s reportedly “deep in talks” to direct the first spin-off film, which is scripted by J.K. Rowling and scheduled for a 2016 release. 


You can read more here. Stay close to Leaky for news on whether Cuaron - or another director - takes the helm.

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43. Quidditch World Cup '14: Liechtenstein vs. Chad

The results are in for the Liechtenstein versus Chad match in the 2014 Quidditch World Cup. Read about the longest game in the tournament so far here.

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44. "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" to be Released November 2016

The first movie in the "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" trilogy will be released on November 18th, 2016, according to Variety:

Set initially in New York about seven decades before the start of the Harry Potter story, the films will follow “magizoologist” Newt Scamander as an extension of the wizarding world — rather than being prequels or sequels.

The Warner Bros.-Rowling partnership on “Fantastic Beasts” had been jointly announced in September with Rowling adapting the script from the 2001 book, ostensibly written by the fictional Newt Scamander.

Tsujihara had said at that point that “Fantastic Beasts” would resemble the eight Harry Potter movies in response to a question of whether the films would re-use the same sets, currently housed at Warner’s Leavesden Studios in London.

You can read more here.

Only two years and six months until the premiere!

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45. Video: More Details on Harry Potter and the Escape From Gringotts, Hogwarts Express

Some new, exciting details have been revealed about the Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts attraction opening at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter this summer. On the attraction, riders will encounter Bellatrix, Gringotts security trolls, dragons, and He Who Must Not Be Named himself. You can watch a video describing more of the attraction here or below.





During an action-packed, fully-immersive journey on Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts, you will: 
 Marvel at the 60-foot, fire-breathing Ukrainian Ironbelly dragon atop Gringotts Wizarding Bank 
 Tour Gringotts bank and pass through the marble hall where you’ll see goblins hard at work 
 Race through a labyrinth of underground Gringotts vaults 
 Encounter the villainous Death Eater, Bellatrix Lestrange, as she attempts to send you to your doom 
 Come face to face with He Who Must Not Be Named 
 Experience even more mind-blowing moments 
 
The multi-dimensional, multi-sensory attraction, Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts, will revolutionize theme 
park entertainment. This next generation thrill ride seamlessly integrates a compilation of the most innovative technology ever 
created, 360-degree themed sets, 4K digital high-definition animation, state-of-the-art 3-D Infitec projection systems and live 
special effects with beloved characters and breathtaking moments from the Harry Potter books and films.

Additionally, on the Today Show this morning, host Al Roker gave viewers a quick look at the Gringotts ride vehicles, as well as a peak at the Hogwarts Express queue. You can see that here or below.


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46. Ginny Weasley Writes for the Daily Profit on Pottermore

J.K. Rowling is, once again, writing new material for Pottermore through news reports on the Quidditch World Cup. Ginny Weasley will be providing updated commentary on the tournament this week, and is expected to be "joined by her family" at the end of the week. As J.K. Rowling stated on Twitter:

 2h   Read Ginny Potter’s reports from the starting today at ! Family expected to join her for the final.

Along side Pottermore:

 3h  Find out which teams will be facing each other in the first round of the 2014 on the Insider!


 2h   Visit the ‘Daily Prophet’ offices on to find out who advanced to the QWC quarter-finals in Nigeria v Fiji

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47. Quidditch World Cup '14 Update on Pottermore: Brazil vs. Haiti

The Daily Prophet offices on Pottermore have been updated with news of the latest match out of the 2014 Quidditch World Cup. You can read Ginny Potter's report on the match between Brazil and Haiti here.

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48. Quidditch World Cup '14 Update on Pottermore: USA vs. Jamaica

The latest of Ginny Potter's reports on the Quidditch World Cup is now available to read in the Daily Prophet offices on Pottermore. This match was between the USA and Jamaica, and you can read more about it here.

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49. Video: The Shops of Diagon Alley and a Closer Look at Escape from Gringotts Attraction

USA Today got a close up look at the shops of Diagon Alley and the Harry Potter and the Escape from Gringotts attraction yesterday. Thierry Coup, the senior vice president of Universal Creative, was on hand to explain the details and creative process behind the Diagon Alley expansion. You can watch the video below.


Many thanks to SnitchSeeker for the tip.

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50. Quidditch World Cup '14 Update on Pottermore: Liechtenstein vs. Chad, Round One

Pottermore has been updated with Ginny Potter's report on the first day of the match between Liechtenstein and Chad. Read all about the game, which has gone on for eleven hours thus far, here.

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