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1. Week in Review, February 8th-12th: Black History Month Week 2

Week in Review

This week on hbook.com…

Black History Month

For Black History Month, we’ve selected articles by and/or about African American children’s book luminaries — one a day throughout February, with a roundup on Fridays. This week’s selections:

Starred reviews coming in the March/April 2016 Horn Book Magazine

February 2016 Notes from the Horn Book: 5Q for Tanita S. Davis, more YA about families facing serious situations, apps to take preschoolers through the day, nonfiction sports picture books, plucky fantasy protagonists

Reviews of the Week:

Out of the Box: 

Lolly’s Classroom: Fantasy and science fiction | Class #4, 2016: Feed and Far Far Away

Events calendar

See overviews of previous weeks by clicking the tag week in review. Find us on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest to keep up-to-date!

The post Week in Review, February 8th-12th: Black History Month Week 2 appeared first on The Horn Book.

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2. Daniel Radcliffe to star in psychological thriller, ‘Jungle’

Dan Radcliffe certainly has a busy schedule with his upcoming roles in Imperium and Now You See Me: The Second Act, and he is now set to star in Jungle a thriller based on Yossi Ghinsberg’s memoir of his trip to the Amazon.

A young adventurer who trekked into the Amazon with two friends and a guide, Ghinsberg’s expedition soon took a dangerous and deadly turn. The Discovery Channel included Ghinsberg’s story in a docudrama series: I Shouldn’t Be Alive.

The psychological thriller is set to be directed by Greg McLean (Wolf Creek), and Justin Monjo is in charge of the script. Dana Lustig, Gary Hamilton and Mike Gabrawy will co-produce alongside director McLean, with Todd Fellman as executive producer.

The Hollywood Reporter reports:

Screen Australia and Screen Queensland have supported development and invested in the project, which is eyeing a shoot later in 2016 in Australia, among other locations.

“We’re extremely excited about Daniel Radcliffe joining the cast of Jungle,” says Gary Hamilton, managing director of Arclight Films. “He has an enthusiastic global fan base, a wide range as an actor as evident by his diversity of roles and is known for picking out unique and interesting projects.”

Dan is has favoured darker genres after his involvement in the Potter films. The Woman in Black, Kill Your Darlings, Horns and Victor Frankenstein all show Radcliffe’s talent for picking diverse characters to portray, and his latest appearance in Swiss Army Man (which received mixed reviews) depicts his venturing into more ‘unique’ independent films.

His upcoming appearances in Imperium and Now You See Me: The Second Act will add to his diverse array of roles, and with any luck, Jungle will continue to depict his talent!

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3. Dame Maggie Smith’s interview with ‘The Evening Standard’ on winning Best Actress

Last Sunday, Dame Maggie Smith was named Best Actress at the Evening Standard British Film Awards for The Lady in the Van. The Evening Standard caught up with Dame Smith to talk about Sunday’s awards and her wide-ranging career.

On her latest win, Smith remained modest as ever, highlighting the brilliance of the actresses she was up against:

“Quite honestly, the things one was up against, it doesn’t seem fair,” she says. “Brooklyn [starring Saoirse Ronan], and 45 Years in which Charlotte [Rampling] was so terrific, and Sicario [with Emily Blunt], although I didn’t really get that…” 

She puts on a Uriah Heep voice: “I just feel ever so ‘umble. It does seem awfully unfair and I can’t help feeling it’s because I am so old.”

The interview developed more on recent interviews about Smith’s early career conducted by LA Times (read here) and CBS News (here). Smith tells more about her portrayal of The Lady in the Van‘s Mary Shepherd in Nicholas Hytner’s West End production in 1999, alongside writer Alan Bennett:

“I was fascinated by the mystery of her,” says Smith. “And of Alan, the way he coped with it and put up with her. I don’t know who was the oddest. You just wonder where her head was. You think ‘confused’ but she was very clear in what she thought, trying to form these political parties and writing letters to [Seventies TV personality] Eamonn Andrews and all that. 

“As I have got older I wonder how the hell she did it. Honest to God, the filming finished me off and that was sort of deluxe. The van was… cleansed from time to time.” She couldn’t have been the Good Samaritan Bennett was, she says.

A film was immediately mooted in 1999 — “the material is actually more filmic” — but for some reason was only made 15 years later. “Whether it was just that Alan decided he wanted to do it, or Nick nagged him, I don’t know,” says Smith. “It certainly wasn’t me! I didn’t go on about it at all. But I was very pleased to sort of finish her off in a way.” 

The loss of Alan Rickman is also mentioned in the interview, along with the recent passing of Frank Finlay – another member of the first National Theatre company in 1962. Smith starred as Desdemona alongside Finlay (who portrayed Iago) in Laurence Oliver’s Othello:

“One night dear Frank came off stage and he flew to the prompt corner and started tearing at his eyes, like Oedipus,” she recalls. “I got very worried, and went over, and said ‘Are you all right?’. He had terribly bad sight, Frank, and was wearing contact lenses, which he never normally wore, and he said: ‘I’ve just seen Sir Laurence for the first time! And I never want to do it again.’” 

She gives a husky laugh, then says: “You get a bit wobbly, you know, when you get to a certain age. It [mortality] seems to be too near.”

For the first time in her career, Maggie Smith has found herself a lot less busy, and whilst The Evening Standard picks up on the fact that she hasn’t much relished the fame brought on by her roles in Potter and Downton, Smith still finds the quietness ‘weird':

Margaret Natalie Smith was born in Romford but moved to Oxford aged four, her father a pathologist and her mother a secretary who thought young Maggie would never work on stage “with a face like that”. Actually, Smith says, she benefited from not being a “juve”, or ingénue, and has worked constantly, though latterly she’s been stuck playing “’orrible old women”. This is the first time in her career that she hasn’t had a job to go to, “and it’s weird, because suddenly there is no shape to anything”.

On the prospect of taking up future work, Smith says ‘big TV shows’ are out of the option, but on a role in film, she retains her sense of humour and answers:

“I can’t think what the part would be, can you?” she says. “It’ll be another old bag won’t it, hurr-hurr-hurr.”

Smith tends to keep her personal life away from the press, but her spoke briefly about her marriages:

Smith was married to the fiery but rackety actor Robert Stephens for seven years and they had two sons, Toby Stephens and Chris Larkin, both actors “and both out in South Africa at the moment, can you believe, doing this thing called Black Sails, being piratical”. 

After her divorce from Stephens in 1974 she married playwright Beverley Cross in 1975. He died in 1998; Robert Stephens had died in 1995. Smith says it doesn’t get any easier being on her own, especially when fans intrude. But she doesn’t think she’ll enjoy an autumnal romance like the one her friend Judi Dench is having: “No, I don’t think I would get that lucky. I don’t think I would find anybody who would come anywhere near Bev.”

Given how rare interviews with Dame Maggie are, we’re very lucky to have had so many recently! Read the rest of the interview here, and make sure you catch her latest award-winning performance in The Lady in the Van.

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4. Pottercast #256 “The 8th Book”

That’s right, ladies and gentleman, after a long and earned-filled wait, your Pottercast withdrawals are over! Pottercast is BACK! The gang is back and discussing Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.

The release of the “eighth story,” and now “the eighth book,” has stirred up a lot of conversation and debate. In the latest episode of Pottercast, Melissa, John and Frak give their thoughts and opinions on Cursed Child, its form as a play versus a book, the publishing of the script (or “book”), and the relevance of Cursed Child not being solely written by J.K. Rowling.

Of course, one could not get away without talking about the many Pottermore revelations that have occurred as of late, so there’s a little extra thrown in there about additional Wizarding World content in addition to Cursed Child.

Pottercast episode #256 is available to download through iTunes, here. In order to download the new episode, please subscribe to Pottercast! It’s great to be back!

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5. Pottermore Interviews Eddie Redmayne on “Fantastic Beasts” Set

Today, Pottermore released a new interview with Fantastic Beasts leading man, Eddie Redmayne. The interview talked a little of how Eddie came to be Newt Scamander in J.K. Rowling’s new movie series, and some of the characteristics he shares with Newt. For starters, Eddie actually carries his own brief case and it contains important aspects of his life within it.

Pottermore reports:

 

‘This is actually slightly embarrassing…’

Eddie Redmayne is sheepishly telling me the story of meeting Fantastic Beastsdirector David Yates for the first time. There’s a broad, bright smile on his freckled face as he does.

Eddie has a case. A tan leather case just like the one his character Newt Scamander keeps his beasts in…

‘I’ve had it for about eight years. My dad works in the city and has always had a briefcase. I always did this acting thing for a living, which didn’t feel like a proper job and I wanted something that made me feel like I was doing a proper job and so I got this case. I use it whenever I go on set. I keep my script and whatever mementos I find useful in it.’

 

When Eddie met David Yates, and the Harry Potter director was telling him about Newt’s story and his magical brief case, Eddie became a little self-conscious of his brief case, telling Pottermore,

 

‘I said [to David Yates], “I promise I didn’t know about Newt’s case. I didn’t bring this as some sort of weird method audition – like, don’t worry David, I come with my own case!” And I’m afraid it’s still here, it’s still got my life in it. Not quite as much as Newt has in his case, though…’

 

Telling Pottermore of getting the part of Newt after that first meeting with David Yates, Eddie said it wasn’t a matter of him wanting the role, it was a matter of him getting the role. Pottermore reported,

 

‘David has such a lovely manner and this incredible kindness to him. There was no question I wanted to do this movie. For me, it was a question of whether I’d get the gig. When I read J.K. Rowling’s script, I just had my mind blown. I was so excited by it. The amazing thing was that I found it funny, I found it a thriller, I found it romantic. At the end, I was deeply moved by it.’

 

The entire interview may be read here, keep an eye on Pottermore for more Fantastic Harry Potter news coming soon (hopefully).

 

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6. Preordering “Cursed Child,” Already Number One in Charts

Yesterday, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child was made available for preorder shortly after the announcement of its publication. (I preordered a hard copy lat night from Amazon, as soon as they put it out there.) The book, that is not a novel but still a book, of the eighth Harry Potter only took hours to top charts.

Despite being already half-off (available for preorder at only £10.00) on UK book dealer, Waterstones’ website, and the full price of $29.99 for a hard copy on Amazon US, price doesn’t seem to be a factor in it’s success already. Interestingly enough, Barnes and Noble is also making the book available for preorder, already advertising 28% off and offering the book for $21.59.

Both Amazon’s Kindle and Barnes and Noble’s Nook are pricing the electronic book at $14.99. It assumed that Amazon, in the coming weeks (the book has only been available for less than 24 hours) will adjust its pricing to a more competitive number to match the market. (Click on the Amazon and Waterstones links to preorder your copy, and contribute to the chart-topping statistics.)

The book was trending news immediately after its publication announcement, yesterday, as the world exploded with the idea of getting more Potter in print, and the fairness of not having to fly to London to get the rest of the story. Though it never left number one Trending News on Facebook, the byline of the title changed form “Rowling releases 8th Harry Potter book,” to “script of upcoming play reaches No. 1 on book sales charts.” Honestly, who expected any less?

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The book, being published by Little, Brown and Scholastic, and authored by all three script writers (J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne, and John Tiffany), is being released in both paper copy and electronic versions. Both formats seems to be over taking charts everywhere. Waterstones, Barnes and Noble, and Amazon serving as an example:

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The Gulf News reported on this chart-topping phenomenon and ringed Little, Brown for comment and questioning on whether or not such success would warrant a midnight release party for the books–a phenomenon that Harry Potter introduced to the publishing industry. Gulf News reports:

 

Little, Brown, publisher of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, said it was “too early to say” whether there would be midnight openings this time round, but that Rowling herself would not be doing any events.

As the book topped the Waterstones, Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com bestseller lists – where it is already discounted to half price – James Daunt, Waterstones chief executive, said there were “no sweeter three words to the ears of a bookseller than ‘the eighth story’.

“Younger booksellers now face, of course, the dubious prospect of their older colleagues rolling out war stories of Harry Potter launches for the next five months. On 31 July, we will put these into the shade.”

Simon Heafield of Foyles said the bookshop chain was “massively excited at the news and are already putting our heads together on the question of how to mark the occasion in style.”

“It’s great that bookshops will get the chance to benefit from this new chapter of Harry’s story,” he said.

David Shelley, chief executive of Little, Brown, said on Wednesday that Rowling and her team had received many requests from fans who cannot see the play to publish it in book form: “We are absolutely delighted to be able to make it available for them,” he said.

 

The full report may be read here.

 

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7. UPDATE: ‘Cursed Child’ Book to be Published in July, and Jim Kay’s Illustrated ‘Chamber of Secrets’ Announced!

Following speculations, Pottermore and Little Brown UK have just announced that the script book for Cursed Child will be released July 31st (Harry Potter / J.K. Rowling’s birthday)!

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Pottermore reports:

A host of new print and digital publishing has been announced from J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World, including a Special Rehearsal Edition of the script book of new stage play Harry Potter and the Cursed Child Parts I & II. 

Print and digital editions will publish simultaneously after the play’s world premiere this summer, and will comprise of the version of the play script at the time of the play’s preview performances. 

Theatre previews allow the creative team the chance to rehearse and explore scenes further before a production’s official opening night. Harry Potter and the Cursed Childopens for previews several weeks before its official first performance on Saturday 30 July and the Special Rehearsal Edition of the script book will later be replaced by a Definitive Collector’s Edition.

The news confirms that fans around the world will be able to join this next venture into the Wizarding World, so don’t fret if you didn’t get tickets to the play!

Pottermore also announced the release of Special Editions, and Jim Kay’s next illustrated edition of Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets!:

Next year will see the publication of four special editions of the first book in the UK, one for each of the four Hogwarts houses. There will also be a brand new edition of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them in 2017, with new content by J.K. Rowling, as well as new formats and editions of the Hogwarts Library books – Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Quidditch Through the Ages and The Tales of Beedle the Bard. 

Pottermore doesn’t play favourites, but we’re especially looking forward to nabbing a copy of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets illustrated by Jim Kay. That’s coming a little sooner, in October 2016, and we’ll be prodding Jim for a look at his latest work soon because we’re nosy like that.

2016 is looking like a huge year – Cursed Child, Fantastic Beasts, more Jim Kay illustrations – what more could we want?!

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8. Daniel Radcliffe Features in Short Film Defending The BBC

Daniel Radcliffe joined celebrities Dame Judi Dench, Steve Coogan, David Oyelowo, Sir Ian McKellen, Naomie Harris, and James Corden in a new video on behalf of The Great BBC Campaign, defending the BBC against cuts.

The video’s slogan is “Don’t let the BBC become a memory. Fight for it”.

Radcliffe thanked the BBC for his first role in David Copperfield, which also featured Dame Maggie Smith, and Imelda Staunton:

“I got to work on the first job I did with Bob Hoskins, Maggie Smith, Ian McNiece, Imelda Staunton, Paul Whitehouse, Emilia Fox, it just goes on and on.”

The film – made by Simon Curtis – has been released before a white paper is published, which will detail the future of the BBC.

Watch the video below!

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9. Dame Maggie Smith wins Best Actress, Emma Thompson dedicates award to Alan Rickman

Dame Maggie Smith won ‘Best Actress’ at the Evening Standard British Film Awards,  for her role as Miss Shepherd in The Lady In The Van.

Emma Thompson won the Comedy award, for her portrayal of Cemolina in The Legend of Barney Thomson. Other nominations in this category included Fantastic Beasts’ Colin Farrell  (The Lobster).

Thompson also gave a heartwarming dedication to Alan Rickman in her speech:

“I’d like to commit this moment in time to dearest Alan Rickman, who many of us are dearly missing tonight. It’s so depressing but there it is, it does happen.

“He always predicted I would end up looking like my mother after a lifetime of Guinness, fish suppers and untipped Players. So thank you.”

The award for best film went to Brooklyn, which features Julie Walters. Walters has been nominated for the ‘Best Supporting Actress’ Bafta (the awards take place 14th February).

Eddie Redmayne and Dame Maggie Smith have also received Bafta 2016 nominations, so keep posted to hear more about the results!

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10. Emma Watson Attend Premiere of “Colonia”

Emma Watson attended the red carpet European premiere of her new film, Colonia. Emma wore a simple, but chic white dress and off-white coat.

Reuters was able to ask Emma a quick question while she attended the premiere. This video can be seen below:

The Daily Mail snapped many photos of Emma and her costars, a few which can be seen below.

 

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Colonia will make its Switzerland and German opening date on February 18, opening in the USA in April. More premiere dates can be seen here at IMDB.

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11. PEN America Updates Website for Gala Honoring Rowling

As Leaky reported earlier this year, PEN America released a press statement, saying Rowling was to be honored with the Allen Foundation Literary Service Award at the PEN America Gala this May. The PEN America website has been updated to give details on the event.

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There will be two honorees for the Gala–J.K. Rowling and Michael Pietsch. The website describes the two honorees, the reason for the reception of their awards, and the event, saying:

 

On Monday, May 16, New York’s literati will gather at the PEN America Literary Gala at the American Museum of Natural History to honor fierce opponents of censorship around the globe. As violence from Mexico to Russia and China to France this year has forced many to consider compromising democratic values in a shortsighted bargain for security, more and more writers—including honorees J.K. Rowling and Michael Pietsch—have joined PEN in defending freedom of expression and the free flow of ideas.

Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling will receive the 2016 PEN/Allen Foundation Literary Service Award for the extraordinary inspiration her books have provided to generations of readers and writers worldwide. Since her rise from single mother to literary superstar, J.K. Rowling has used her talents and stature as a writer to fight inequality on both a local and global level. Herself the frequent object of censorship in schools and libraries across the globe, as well as online targeting, Rowling has emerged as a vocal proponent of free expression and access to literature and ideas for children, as well as incarcerated people, the learning-disabled, and women and girls worldwide.

 

The Gala will take place Monday May 16, 6:30 PM, at American Museum of Natural History in New York.

If there are any Harry Potter fans out there willing to pay between $12,000-$50,000 for a table, you can make your reservations here. Buying a $25,000 or $50,000 table gets you a private cocktail reception with J.K. Rowling. (Though, adding a $50,000 purchase to ones shopping cart is daunting–even if you just do it for kicks and back out before making payment.)

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12. Emma Watson as Dr. Who?

Many Dr. Who fans were sadden to hear that Steven Moffat and Peter Capaldi will be stepping down from their roles with the highly successful TV series sooner than any expected. With a new writer and a new Doctor being introduced to the series in the near future (2018), there have been many interesting suggestions flying around the rumor mill–including rumors of Harry Potter stars filling in the lead role.

With new head writer, Chris Chibnall, will there be a woman Doctor Who? It would certainly shake things up a bit for the series–which has essentially been running since 1963 (the first series ended in 1989, but was brought back in 2005)–as the show has always run under a male lead as the Doctor, with a female supporting actress as the Doctor’s companion.

Popular suggestions in the fan base right now are Benedict Cumberbatch, Ben Whishaw (“Q” from the recent James Bond movies), Richard Ayoade and Chiwetel Ejiofor. But the possibility of having a woman Doctor, for the first time in over 50 years, also opens up the opportunity for a male companion. Two popular suggestions at the moment are our own Harry Potter lead actress, Emma Watson, and Game of Thrones star Maisie Williams.

Emma Watson’s role as Hermione is a relatively fitting character for a female Dr. Who. Emma Watson’s Hermione was incredibly intelligent, independent, and caring. A Doctor Who, traveling through space and time, with expansive knowledge of all of history and the future, acting as a guardian aid in the safety of the universe, and as a leader embodies all of these things.

Though a female Doctor Who’s personality and quirkiness would be much different than Hermione’s, Emma Watson would still be a great actress to select for the role. Of course, even if she is offered the role, it is up to her to accept it.

The changing of gender roles opens up an interesting discussion within the TV series as well as within the industry itself. Please share with us your thoughts and suggestions!

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13. Trump Tries in New Hampshire

Scholastic News Kids Press Corps Trump Tries in New Hampshire by Stone Shen

On February 2, more than 3,000 Donald Trump supporters crammed into an athletic club in Milford, New Hampshire to hear the Republican candidate speak. The place was buzzing with excitement. Before Trump came on, a group of people went onto the stage and delivered speeches. This included some of Trump’s campaign managers and former United States Senator Scott Brown.

This rally was important because it was right after the Iowa Caucus, in which Trump finished second. Trump said that he was pleased with the final standing in Iowa, although he has complained elsewhere that the process was unfair.

At the rally, Trump promised to make “big, big cuts in taxes to the middle class.” When asked about his position on gun control, he said, “We’re going to protect ourselves by protecting the Second Amendment.” The Second Amendment says that “the right of the people to keep and bear Arms shall not be infringed.”

ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION
One main topic was illegal immigration. Trump said that he did not oppose immigration. Rather, he just wants immigrants to settle in the U.S. legally.

One Trump supporter with whom I spoke said, “I like his immigration policy. He wants to secure the borders and make people come in the way they used to. You come in, get a job, you support yourself, and you contribute to this country.”

Trump stood by his decision to not participate in the final Republican debate before the Iowa Caucus. That decision was said to have contributed to his defeat to Ted Cruz. Trump said that he had been proud to hold a fundraising event for veterans at the same time as the debate, raising 6 million dollars.

“I like how he is trying to support the country,” said Pearse Wojczak, a young Trump fan from Connecticut, “and how he is trying to protect us.”

Trump ended the rally with a look toward the New Hampshire Primary, saying, “I expect to win.”

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14. Emma Watson Expands Her Influence

The brilliant Emma Watson’s influence continues to grow!  Over 100,000 people have joined her book club, Our Shared Shelf, on GoodReads, and now news breaks of her appointment at an Oxford college.

The Guardian reports that Emma Watson joins Benedict Cumberbatch and nine others as visiting fellows at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford.  The college posted Watson’s bio as a means of introduction:

Best known for her role as Hermione Granger in Harry Potter, Emma graduated from Brown University and attended Worcester College, Oxford. She received a BAFTA Britannia Award for British Artist of the Year in 2014. In the same year she also became a UN Women Goodwill Ambassador advocating equality and promoting education for girls.

Emma Watson also lived in the Oxford area before being cast in the Harry Potter films.

The appointments were announced by the college’s principal, Alan Rusbridger, former editor-in-chief of The GuardianRusbridger writes,

We canvassed names from our own governing body, of people of distinction whom we admired and whom we felt could add to the intellectual and cultural life of LMH.  A small sub-committee then whittled down the names to arrive at the list we are announcing today – which spans science, medicine, the performing arts, literature, feminism, politics, law and policing.

Of the eleven people honored, Rusbridger claims that only one is a serious academic.  All are leaders in their respective fields, including artist Cornelia Parker, musician Neil Tennant (of the Pet Shop Boys), and film director Beeban Kidron.

Lady Margaret Hall hopes that Emma Watson and the other fellows will feel free to drop by the college, join the students and professors for meals in the dining hall, and participate in at least one structured event/appearance/lecture at the college over the course of the three years of the fellowship.  The point is for both the students and the visiting fellows to grow in their knowledge and gain new perspectives.

Please join us in congratulating Emma Watson on this most recent honor!

To read more, visit Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford or The Guardian article.

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15. Week in Review, February 1st-5th: Black History Month Week 1

Week in Review

This week on hbook.com…

Black History Month

For Black History Month, we’ve selected articles by and/or about African American children’s book luminaries — one a day throughout February, with a roundup on Fridays. This week’s selections:

Preview the March/April 2016 issue of The Horn Book Magazine

Reviews of the Week:

Read Roger: HB NB February

Out of the Box: 

Lolly’s Classroom: The past made present | Class #3, 2016: Two historical fiction books and Three nonfiction books

Events calendar

See overviews of previous weeks by clicking the tag week in review. Find us on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest to keep up-to-date!

The post Week in Review, February 1st-5th: Black History Month Week 1 appeared first on The Horn Book.

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16. More Exclusive Cast Interviews from ‘A Celebration of Harry Potter’!

Huffington Post and Hollywood Life have recently published two cast interviews with Matt Lewis, Rupert Grint, Evanna Lynch and Katie Leung following A Celebration of Harry Potter.

Rupert Grint thinks Hermione and Ron would be separated (if not divorced), none of them would overlook a role in Star Wars, and Rupert thinks Cursed Child made a huge mistake.

First up is Huff Post, and their representative really got the cast talking, giving a great introduction about the importance of breaking out of viewing these great actors as their characters:

“What I enjoy as I sit down to speak with the group is how much these adults are unlike their characters (except for maybe Lynch, who is still delightfully Luna Lovegood-esque). It seems obvious, but we’ve such a tendency to want to lock actors into their iconic roles. It is challenge breaking out of that, especially when you’re remembered as being a cute, or awkward, or weird, or chubby kid on screen. Yet each has grown up, and gone on to other acting gigs and new pursuits.”

This interview gave a broad sweep of the actor’s opinions on Fantastic Beasts, their characters, further roles in big franchises and more!

On giving advice to Fantastic Beasts and Cursed Child cast members: 

Matt Lewis: I don’t know how much advice I could ever give anyone. The people who have been cast, as far as I’m aware of, are very, very experienced. They don’t need any advice from me. But I guess just enjoy it. It has been a hell of an experience for me, and everything associated with it: the people, the fans, the environment. It was a good gig to be on! Just enjoy it because there’s nothing else like it, literally in the world. It is unique.

Rupert Grint: I think it’s going to be a very different film, I think. I don’t know much about it, but as Matthew said, just enjoy it. Go with the flow.

Evanna Lynch: I’d say trust David Yates, as well. He always knows better on the film. Sometimes I would go, “Oh, I’m doing terrible, I’m messing up.” He would come along and suggest something tiny, and it would change everything. He is very clever. And he is the one who has transitioned from one to the other. He has the whole picture.

On involving themselves in any large-scale productions again:

Q: This was very much your childhood, and your job growing up. If you had the opportunity now to enter another franchise that would consume multiple years – like Lord of the Rings or Star Wars – would you be reluctant to join that production?

A:

Lynch: No. I loved it. I love the family feel, and the idea you can get deeper into your character over a year. I have been on films that were just three or five weeks, and sometimes I’ve been like, damn, I’d only just started to get into it. It was nice to have something you could develop it, and learn and grow alongside your character. And I just loved the family thing. I got very comfortable there.

Lewis: Hey, if Star Wars come knocking on the door tomorrow, I’m not going to go, “Um no, guys, I’m sorry, I don’t want to do four films, it’s fine.” No, of course not. I’d think about it, and I love Star Wars, etc. But there would definitely be a bit of trepidation in joining a big franchise again for that amount of time. Just simply because I’m really enjoying the diversity of the roles I’ve been given recently. Playing a character is great, but I love the process of finding someone, finding a character, creating and drawing it up. And trying to figure out what makes that person tick. When you do something for however many years, it can start to become – I don’t want to say mundane because it was never boring on the films. But you kind of lose that spark a little bit you get in that first day of school, or on a new job. It is exciting. And I’ve gotten that so often in the last couple years, I’d be reluctant to give that up.

Leung: I kind of agree with Matt. If it goes on for any longer than a certain period of time, you do get really comfortable and feel very safe. Having done all the projects after Potter, it has been a few weeks, a few months for a project. You do really get to know a character, and it is wonderful knowing that, once you stop filming or being on stage and being that character, it essentially dies. So I quite like that. Of course, it depends who the character is you’re going to be playing. But yeah, if it’s Star Wars …

Lewis: Star Wars is welcomed.

Grint: I don’t know. I don’t think it’s put me off. There’s pros and cons. Harry Potter could be at times quite suffocating. It did take up our whole lives. So yeah, I suppose there would be tiny bit of reluctance. Now that I’m out of it, I can see beyond it and it’s nice to have a real life, and do things you want. There’s a lot of freedom in that. But yeah, I think it all depends on the material.

Who knows – maybe a role as another Resistance pilot, or as a key character to unveiling Rey’s mysterious past will come up. Make it happen, Disney!

The Huff Post representative also asked where they’d like to think their Potter characters will be in the future.

As we know, Ron and Hermione were married with two children (Rose and Hugo) at Nineteen Years Later, all of whom attended the 427th Quidditch World Cup in 2014. Ron and Hermione’s relationship seems to be going well – that is, unless you take Rupert Grint’s word for it:

Grint: [laughs] I would expect Ron has probably divorced Hermione already. I don’t think that relationship would have done very well.

Lynch: What?!

Like living in his own, low-rent bachelor pad?

Grint: Yeah. Exactly. He’s living on his own, in a little one-bedroom apartment. He hasn’t got a job.

Lynch: Don’t say divorced. Say they’ve split up. They can reconcile.

Grint: Yeah, they’re briefly separated.

Ron is on Tinder doing horribly…

Grint: Yeah!

Lewis: Living in a one-bedroom studio apartment all alone, doing nothing. He lives in Kings Cross, right in that area.

Evanna took a more career-related view for Luna, and we can definitely see this happening:

Lynch: I think Luna would have an adventure documentary series. She becomes a naturalist, and I think she’d travel the world and have a show. I could be a wildlife narrator.

Like a David Attenborough of the wizard world?

Lynch: Yeah, and she would prove all her creatures exist. Everyone is so dubious of her, and I’d like her to show they’re real.

Anybody else want this to become a mini-series?!

Katie Leung had aspirations for her character – we love her no-nonsense view of Cho:

Katie Leung: I reckon Cho would probably have become a really successful entrepreneur, and really cold and ruthless.

Lynch: Oh my god! [laughs]

[Interviewer] I like this. 

Leung: Yeah, she’s cried all the tears she could cry, and now she’s become real cold and heartless.

Lewis: This is dark! I love this!

[Interviewer] What kind of entrepreneur? She runs a tech company? Or a developer who tears down bachelor pads like Ron’s?

Leung: Yeah, yeah, that! Exactly.

Lynch: Oh…

Matthew Lewis bases his on information he received from J.K. Rowling herself, and even works Rupert’s view of Ron into his vision:

Lewis: Oh god. Neville works at the school, right? So he’s a professor, just enjoying that. Maybe he’s trying to get Ron a job, man. And he keeps throwing it back in his face, like, “I don’t need your help, Neville; Jesus, just leave it.” And I’m like, “Come on, it’s fine, we’ll sort it out, just trying to get you back into the fold.” Yeah, him and Hermione don’t see eye to eye because I’ve taken Ron’s side in the relationship, obviously. They’ve got everyone split off, friends wise. I don’t know who you guys chose? Did you choose Hermione?

Lynch: Ron!

Leung: No, Ron.

Lewis: Are you Ron as well? Jeez, Hermione is thin on the ground with friends!

Leung: Well, I’ll go with Hermione, then.

Lynch: I think Ron would need more help. Hermione would handle herself better.

Grint: Yeah, he’s in a bad way.

[Interviewer] But Ron could have a job as a replacement for Mr. Filch

Grint: Yeah!

Lewis: Yeah, I’ll get you in as the caretaker of the school, man. We’ll sort it out. Don’t worry about it.

Grint: Just get me out there. Just get me out of the house.

Lynch: And we’ll get you back together.

Read the full interview here!

Hollywood Life‘s interview focussed on J.K. Rowling’s newest endeavour: Cursed Child. Rupert Grint thinks they’ve made a huge mistake!:

“Um yeah, I think they made a huge mistake in not casting me,” 

He reportedly said, but of course he was joking – we’re all sure Paul Thornley is going to do an amazing job!

 “No, no. I think it’s going to amazing, that it’s going on, and I can’t wait to see it.”

In a similar vein to his interview with MTV, Matthew Lewis spoke about feeling like his role as Neville was complete:

“I feel like the story arch that Jo wrote and that we tried our best to put on screen was a complete one,”

“I took that journey and finished it the way I wanted to. He will always hold a fun place in my heart, but I don’t feel like there is more that I can do with Neville. I’m happy to leave him.”

Evanna Lynch, however, has something to say about not being cast!:

“I don’t feel that way at all …  As happy as I am that they are exploring the universe and that there are new stories in the universe, I’m so angry I’m not a part of it…100% I’d go back and do more.”

Read the full Hollywood Life interview here

So there you have it – Evanna will soon be portraying a Resistance Pilot, the Wizarding World’s very own David Attenborough, and a West End star (kidding, unfortunately). 

You can read more about cast interviews from A Celebration of Harry Potter here and here!

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17. How are You Celebrating Harry Potter Book Night?

After the Celebration of Harry Potter last weekend, the celebrating and partying continues! Tonight, February 4th, is the night of the second annual Harry Potter Book Night. This is a night of celebrating the Harry Potter books and the significance they’ve made on our individual lives, and the entire publishing industry and literary world as a whole.

There are many celebrations taking place in bookstores, homes, and various other settings around the U.K. and the U.S. Last year, only Bloomsbury publishing provided party kits of the nights events, but expanded the celebration to other countries through Scholastic.

This year’s Harry Potter Book Night also has a special theme–“A Night of Spells.” In theme, Bloomsbury hosted a poll to find Harry Potter fans’ favorite spell from the series. Participants could choose from the following top ten list. Expecto Patronum won!

1. Expecto patronum – to summon up a Patronus
2. Accio – to call an object to you
3. Wingardium Leviosa – to levitate objects
4. Expelliarmus –to disarm your opponent
5. Lumos – to ignite one’s wand-tip to provide light
6. Alohomora – to open locked windows and doors
7. Avada Kedavra – to bring about instant death
8. Sectumsempra –  the incantation for one of the Half-Blood Prince’s spells
9. Obliviate – to make the subject forget
10. Riddikulus  –  to make a Boggart take on a comical appearance and eventually explode

The night is still very young, and the Harry Potter Book Night website has a map of events and activities to participate in. You can find ideas and different celebrations here. Pottermore wrote up about the celebration, wanting to hear about fan’s celebrations. We also want to know! Please share with us your plans for the night!

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18. Congrats to Ezra Jack Keats Winners Don Tate and Phoebe Wahl

The 30th Annual Ezra Jack Keats Book Award winners were announced today, with top honors going to Don Tate for writing and Phoebe Wahl for illustration. Both winners have long-standing relationships with the SCBWI; Wahl won a Student Illustrator Scholarship in 2013, and Tate is a member of our Team Blog. The Jack Ezra Keats Award, named in honor of the author/illustrator of The Snowy Day, is given to new picture books that display an exceptional creative spirit and a dedication to cultural diversity.

Don Tate has embraced these ideals throughout his career as an author/illustrator, founder of the Brown Bookshelf blog, and artist outreach coordinator for the We Need Diverse Books Campaign.  Tate’s winning book Poet: The Remarkable Story of George Moses Horton of Chapel Hill (Peachtree, 2015), which he both wrote and illustrated, is the true story of a slave whose love of language led him to become the first African American poet published in the Southern United States. The book has already garnered star reviews from Kirkus and the School Library Journal, which called Horton's story “lovely” and “inspirational”. Tate previously won a Jack Ezra Keats Award honor three years ago for his book It Jes’ Happened: When Bill Traylor Started to Draw, and called the experience “one of the proudest moments of my career[…]There has always been a special place in my heart for Ezra Jack Keats. When he chose to picture brown children in his books, he chose to acknowledge me. I wasn’t invisible to him. As a creator of color in a field that sorely lacks diversity, it can be easy to sometimes feel unseen. This award serves as a reminder to me that I am not invisible and that my work matters.”

Phoebe Wahl won the illustration award for Sonya’s Chickens (Tundra Books), a bittersweet story about a farm girl tending chicks under the guidance of her multicultural family. Sonya’s lessons about responsibility and the circle of life are framed by warm, richly-textured art pieces that have earned Wahl a Kirkus star. In an EKJ press release, she spoke about the influence that Ezra Jack Keats had on her own signature style: “I can directly trace the roots of my obsession with pattern, color and my use of collage to my affinity with the lacy baby blanket in Peter’s Chair. Keats inspired me to create stories that are quiet and gentle, yet honor the rich inner lives of children and all of the complexity that allows.” Sonya’s Chickens is her debut book.

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19. NEW Harry Potter POP! Vinyl Figures announced!

Funko announced the newest Pop! Vinyl characters in their wave 2 exclusive Harry Potter collection yesterday, and Matthew Lewis is already showing his off!

The first is a Barnes & Noble Exclusive Pre-Release – an absolutely adorable Neville Longbottom (with Trevor, too!), which Matthew Lewis posed with in his recent post (his moustache will be making its latest appearance in Happy Valley):

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The next is equally as adorable – Sorting Hat Harry Potter:

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Qudditch Draco Malfoy‘s Pop! Vinyl is pretty suave, we think: 6881_HP_Quidditch_Draco_hires_large

 

And the new Trizward Cedric Diggory is what all the Hufflepuffs have been waiting for!

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Neville and Harry are Barnes and Noble exclusives, whilst Cedric and Draco are exclusive to Hot Topic.

These characters will be released in March, and we can’t wait! Let us know what you think via Facebook, Twitter or Instagram.

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20. Black Comics Month: Clusterf@#K

I’m a firm believer that we shouldn’t celebrate black history or women’s history only one month a year, but 365 days (or even 366 days) a year. However Black History Month has given rise to Black Comics Month and a a website covering all kinds of comics. By special arrangement with that site’s mastermind, Miz […]

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21. Analysis of Newest “Fantastic Beast” Clip, Everything We Know so Far

This last weekend, Pottermore released a new clip from behind the scenes of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them at the 3rd annual Harry Potter Celebration. They also included an analysis of the video, that basically reiterated what the video showed.

However, we Potter fans know that these things reveal much much more, if one only looks close enough. The following is an analysis of the behind the scenes clip from “Fantastic Beasts” and a cumulation of everything we know so far. We actually may know a lot more than we think…

First, Let’s Talk Characters

The full cast list on the Fantastic Beasts IMDB has gotten long. It includes gala dinner guests, MACUSA receptionists,  witches and wizards (uh, duh), upper class wealthy people, lower class hard working citizens, criminals, a candy store girl (?), exterminators (exciting! Are they big beasty exterminators?), executioners (scary!), factory workers, bank workers, aurors (of course), jazzy people (it is the Roaring 20’s, full of wizard Gatsby parties), gangsters (New York Wizard Mob?), customs officials (immigration to the US has always been a big thing, but there was a big wave in the early 1900’s), Senator Henry Shaw and a Henry Shaw Jr., and journalists (hopefully not the Rita Skeeter kind)! There are even people cast as “beasts”–we have a big foot (Sasquatch) and Edd Osmond has been cast as a Demiguise:

Wow. All those characters make quite a story! But what do we know about the characters with names?

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[Picture: Dan Fogler as Jacob stands in front of a drugstore/soda fountain/candy shop]

Remember Modesty? According to the WB Casting call out, we know that Modesty as,

“a haunted young girl with inner strength and stillness. She also possessed an ability to see deep into people and understand them. Modesty met Newton Scamander during his travels in New York, at which time she was between the age of eight and twelve.”

Ron Perlman plays a character named Gnarlack–sounds wizard worldly.

Samantha Morton as “Mary Lou” is the leader of the “Second Salemers.” EW described her character as, “The narrow-minded leader of the fanatical Second Salemers, a group looking to expose and destroy wizards and witches.”

Ezra Miller plays Credence, or as EW revealed, “Perhaps the cast’s most mysterious character. He’s Mary Lou’s troubled adopted son.” One can make a lot of speculations about what that means…

Let’s take a look at Graves, “a powerful auror and the right-hand man of the American wizarding world’s president,” whom we now know as President Seraphina. We saw, in the first trailer, Katherine Waterston’s Tina Goldstein approach, nervously and somberly, the MACUSA leader and a congress of people to make a case for Newt. This serious looking President is probably not a friend of our Newt; he is stirring up a lot of trouble in an already dangerous and tumultuous society with No-Maj relations. Graves, by default is probably not a friend of Newt’s either.

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Similar to the trio in Harry Potter, we know that there are four main characters. We’ve known this since the EW report last year, but they stressed this in the second clip. Pottermore highlighted this with a quote from David Heyman, saying, “This isn’t just Newt’s story; Jacob, Tina and Queenie are all at the centre of it. ‘All four central characters are outsiders. Part of the journey of this, for each of them, is coming into themselves,’ says David Heyman.” With the EW report last year and this clip, we actually know quite a bit more about this quartet.

Jacob Kowalski (played by Dan Fogler) is just a little blue collar No-Maj, returning home from war and wanting to start a bakery….and accidentally finds himself on a magical adventure.

EW had described him as: “An optimistic No-Maj (aka Muggle) factory worker/aspiring baker who gets introduced to the wizarding world when he meets Newt. Fun fact: He’s the Harry Potter franchise’s first Muggle main character.”

In the new clip, Dan opened up about his character Jacob, saying: ‘Jacob is back from the war and now he’s trying to get his life together and open up a bakery. He just happens into this very magical situation,’ he says. Dan also believes that Potter fans will ‘feel the nostalgia and the love they have for the movies in a whole new light.’

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We assume that the simple bedroom that we see Eddie sitting in is Jacob’s, some how the two are very good friends. Or at least Jacob is holding Eddie’s case a lot…

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Actually, Newt hardly ever seems to have a hand on his case. No wonder some of the beasties get out!

 

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Newt needs to be more responsible with that case. He looses it a lot. He looses the contents of it…it’s a good thing he’s a Hufflepuff, and must be well adept at finding things.

Half of the new quartet is made up of Tina and Queenie Goldstein. Tina will eventually become Newt’s wife, but until then this is what we know.

EW: Queenie is “Tina’s younger sister and roommate, a big-hearted free-spirit “legilimens” who can read minds.” Porpentina, or Tina, is described, “an ambitious worker at the Magical Congress of the United States of America (aka MACUSA, the U.S. version of the Ministry of Magic) who meets Newt. Tina is relegated to an office well below her abilities after she stood up for the wrong person. She longs to fight for what’s right.”

Pottermore wrote:

Alison [Queenie] also has some interesting comments about the relationship between the Goldstein sisters: ‘You have two sisters, who have raised each other and have a very deep bond.’ We can’t be sure but this shot makes it look like Alison knows what Katherine is thinking. Which is entirely possible –  after all, she’s playing a Legilimens.

Katherine says her character Tina is ‘very soulful; she has a lot of heart and strengths and courage.’

Tina’s career at MACUSA has stalled but she’s certainly at the heart of this story. We saw some very intense moments with Tina, wand in hand and looking very serious indeed. ‘The job we have to do is to make it seem natural and you kind of have to ignore your own sense of wonder watching it,’ says Waterston.

 

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Awe how sweet…now what about Tina’s future trouble maker husband, Newt Scamander? The two have a couple of wonderful moments together it seems, though with the trouble Newt causes, I doubt it was love at first sight.

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Newt is the leading man, and EW described him as, “An eccentric globe-hopping English “magizoologist” wizard who’s far more comfortable around beasts and creatures than he is around other people. Comes to New York on a quest with his case full of magical habitats containing rare and endangered species.”

We already know Newt doesn’t keep a good eye on that magical case of his, and little beasties escape and reek havoc. As Eddie says in the new feature, “‘And this one catalyst sets in motion this sort of insane amount of events that just cause chaos. And at the core of it, is this quartet.’”

Let’s Talk Set

1926 New York, MACUSA…we’ve actually seen quite a lot of it! From the photos EW first revealed on set of Fantastic Beasts, to the behind the scenes snippet that just came out, we see lots of the streets of New York.

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Looks like they wander into a barn at one point…perhaps to capture a beast? And then goof around and pretend to be beasts…

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But what about MACUSA? We got our first description of MACUSA from EW upon the release of the official Fantastic Beasts movie poster:

“1. ARCHITECTURAL WIZARDRY: The Magical Congress of the United States of America is hidden from Muggle view inside the very real Woolworth Building (New York’s tallest structure in 1926). Wizards enter through an ultra-fast-spinning revolving door into a grand lobby. While this Fantastic Beasts stage is a rather massive 250 feet long and 50 feet high, the ceiling will be extended with special effects to reach nearly 700 feet to represent “an empty cathedral of light, a hugely impressive, brilliantly lit space,” says production designer Stuart Craig.”

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“2. THE PHOENIXES OF THE ORDER: J.K. Rowling’s screenplay included these four golden phoenix statues (two unseen) that bracket the MACUSA entrance, paying homage to those who died during the Salem witch trials – a major traumatic event in the history of American wizard and No-Maj (a.k.a. Muggle) relations. Notes Craig: “Throughout, the magical world is grounded in the context of the Muggle world, born out of things familiar and real.”

“3. GOLD, NOT JUST FOR SNITCHES ANY LONGER: Loosely based on the interior of the Gothic art-deco American Radiator Building in midtown Manhattan, the MACUSA design includes a heavy use of gold to “bring a richness to the decoration. Given that this is the seat of power of the government in the magic world, it’s appropriate that it is gilded.”

“4. MAGICAL HERALDRY: The official MACUSA emblem, based on the U.S. presidential seal, includes the etching of an American flag combined with an abstract phoenix

 

The behind the scenes trailer gave us a clearer picture of MACUSA and its phoenixes, and weird Puritan statues in the middle:

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We also get a first (fuzzy) glimpse at the MACUSA seal:

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During the Harry Potter Celebration, Pottermore and J.K. Rowling released a lot of information about wizarding schools around the world. We know from previous J.K. Rowling tweets that the North American (USA?) Wizarding school, Ilvermorny, will be featured in the first Fantastic Beasts films. The description and detail of the other schools–Castelobruxo (Brazil),  Mahoutokoro (Japan),  Uagadou (Africa)–is amazing. One can only hope that future Fantastic Beasts films will travel around the world to these schools too. J.K. Rowling says to keep watching Pottermore for more details….

 

Let’s Talk Wands…

Newt’s wand was originally thought to be “vegan.” It was “simply wood,” according to EW. Why vegan? Because Newt was a zoologist who cares lot about animals, loves them and connects with them more than people, so his wand would be “vegan.” However, the recent reveal that Newt’s wand was made from lime wood, shell, and bone, seems to contradict that original theory. Bone definitely doesn’t make it vegan.

What wands are made of is important. But wands look like is even more appealing to fans (because, of course, by this time next year we will be buying replicas of them). In the new video, we actually see many of the characters’ wands up close.

Newt shows off his quite a lot throughout the two small videos we have.

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Tina becomes more brave about using her wand, and even does magic in front of a No-Maj! Don’t worry, it’s just Jacob…a wounded Jacob.

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Queenie’s and Graves’ wands have a little flare to them. They each have shiny handles, though we are sure specifics about those will come later:

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Let’s Talk Beasts…

The troublemakers. We actually haven’t seen any of the “fantastic” beasts yet. There have been a couple beast castings (see above) and EW did release a small list of beasts we can expect to see. Those beasts include a Niffler, Ashwinder, Lethifold, Augurey, Bowtruckle, Crup and Merepeople. Descriptions of all of these creatures can be found in book, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. It would be really bad if an Ashwinder got into that barn the quartet is in…Other than that, we have a beastie Fantastic Beasts logo, and that is about it.

I think that pretty much sums up all that we are allowed to know of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them so far. The two videos we have so far can be seen below. Enjoy! We will update you with more news when we can!

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22. Demand Prices Adopted for Opening of the ‘Wizarding World of Harry Potter’ at Universal Studios Hollywood

In the run up to the April 7th opening of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios Hollywood, the theme park is planning ahead to try to manage operations around this time.

Their new pricing policy will reflect popular demand, so will charge higher for this period of massive fluctuations in visitors (attendance jumped almost 30% in 2011 after the installation of a ride at the Wizarding World in Orlando, and after new installations in 2014 revenue was boosted by double digits).

LA Times reports:

“Under the pricing policy launched Tuesday by Universal Studios, tickets bought at the gate remain $95. But visitors who book tickets online for low-demand days — such as a weekday in February before Harry Potter opens — can save up to $20.

“During weekends and peak demand days during spring break or summer, parkgoers save only $5 by booking online.

“Universal wants people to plan ahead, which will help it manage its operations. Parkgoers can lock in prices by buying tickets online for dates through the end of September. People who procrastinate might see online prices fluctuate depending on last-minute demand.

” “Demand-based pricing not only helps maximize ticket revenues, but also provides a tool to shift price-conscious consumers to less-busy days,” said Michael Erstad, senior consumer analyst at New York-based ITG Investment Research. “Spreading visitations throughout the week may help improve the overall customer experience at the park.” “

Basically, if you’re wanting to be one of the first to see the Wizarding World in Hollywood, be prepared to pay their high prices. Alternatively, plan around these high-demand dates and go at a period expected to be less crowded!

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23. SCBWI ANNOUNCES ON-THE-VERGE EMERGING VOICES AWARD WINNERS

The Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators is pleased to announce the 2015 On-The-Verge Emerging Voices Award winners.  The annual award, established by SCBWI and funded by Martin and Sue Schmitt, is given to two writers or illustrators who are from ethnic and/or cultural backgrounds that are traditionally underrepresented in children’s literature in America and who have a ready-to-submit completed work for children. 

 

Congratulations to Jackie Dorothy for her manuscript Wind Rider, the story of one Arapaho boy’s struggle to protect his family from an evil shaman while the battle between modernization and tradition plague his tribe’s reservation; and to Judy Allen Dodson for Fast Friends, the story of Jesse Owens and Marty Glickman’s inspiring relationship during the race for the gold medal at the 1936 Berlin Olympics.

 

Jackie is an active member of SCBWI’s Wyoming Chapter as well as a member of the Northern Arapaho tribe in central Wyoming and is the sixth generation of her family living on the Wind River Indian Reservation. Jackie blogs at www.ArapahoLegends.com and is currently unrepresented.

 

Judy is an active SCBWI member in the Carolinas Chapter and has been a librarian for several years. She believes strongly in providing authentic and positive images of African Americans in children’s literature. She multiple manuscripts and is currently unrepresented.

 

The winners will each receive a paid trip to the SCBWI Summer Conference in Los Angeles to meet editors, agents, and other industry professionals. The winning manuscripts will also be available to select agents and editors via a secure website.

 

The award is inspired in part by the SCBWI’s increasing efforts to foster underrepresented voices in children’s literature.  According to SCBWI Executive Director Lin Oliver, “every child should have the opportunity to see themselves reflected in the pages of a book. And all authors should have the opportunity to write their truth. SCBWI is proud to contribute to this important effort to bring forth new voices.”  

 

The grant is made possible through the generosity of Sue and Martin Schmitt of the 455 Foundation. Sue wrote: "Diverse writers need to know that not only do their voices and stories matter— but are necessary!  We live in a world where we must strive to understand other points of view and each other for the betterment of humankind."  

 

More information can be found in the “Awards and Grants” section at www.scbwi.org.

 

About Martin and Sue Schmitt

Martin and Sue Schmitt are the founders of We Can Build an Orphanage, sponsoring the Kay Angel orphanage in Jacmel, Haiti. The organization was established in 2007 with the mission to provide a home and education for abandoned children infected with or affected by AIDS in Jacmel, Haiti.  The Schmitts’ generous and continuous efforts to support SCBWI’s long-term goals also co-sponsored the 2007 Global Voices Program, which highlighted Mongolian artists and authors. To find out more information about the Kay Angel orphanage please visit www.kayangel.org.

 

About SCBWI

Founded in 1971, the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators is one of the largest existing writers’ and illustrators’ organizations, with over 22,000 members worldwide. It is the only organization specifically for those working in the fields of children’s literature, magazines, film, television, and multimedia. The organization was founded by Stephen Mooser (President) and Lin Oliver (Executive Director), both of whom are well-published children’s book authors and leaders in the world of children’s literature.  For more information about the On-The-Verge Diverse Voices Award, please visit www.scbwi.org, and click “Awards & Grants.”

 

0 Comments on SCBWI ANNOUNCES ON-THE-VERGE EMERGING VOICES AWARD WINNERS as of 2/3/2016 2:24:00 PM
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24. Happy Birthday Warwick Davis!

Today we honor and celebrate Warwick Davis’s birthday! This Harry Potter actor who played goblins and charms professors and choir directors throughout the Harry Potter films turns 46 today. In honor of his birthday, J.K. Rowling retweeted a picture that show a montage of Davis’s film roles over the years!

 

Join us in wishing Warwick Davis a very happy birthday!

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25. New Trailer for Matt Lewis’s “Me Before You”

USA Today released the exclusive first trailer of Matt Lewis’s (Neville Longbottom) new film, Me Before You. The film stars Emilia Clarke and Sam Claflin in the film adaptation of Jojo Moyes’ novel. Matt plays a character named Patrick, Lou’s (Clarke) small-town steady boyfriend before she goes and works for Will (Claflin).

Though Matt’s “obsessed with with sports and diet” character isn’t featured in the new trailer, which focuses solely on the leading protagonists, but it looks like a great spring break flick and we can’t wait to see Matt on the silver screen. The movie premieres March 4.

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