- Wow! 20 years already? Someone must have been playing with a Time Turner because it felt like yesterday that I got my copy of “The Deathly Hallows” and with the Fantastic Beats I guess the magic is still going strong. But let’s take a look back from that fateful day of June 26, 1997. (excerpt from TIME Magazine: Harry Potter) by Lev Grossman and Allie Townsend
- June 26, 1997—Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone is published in England of 500 copies.
- December 27, 1998—Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone appearance on the New York Times best-seller list.
- September 4, 1999—The first known Harry Potter fan-fiction is posted to FanFiction.net “Harry Potter and the Man of Unknown”
- July 2000—The New York Times creates a children’s best-seller list after the first three books spend a year atop the adult-fiction list. (Taking the #1 spot after Potter moves to the kids’ section: Danielle Steel’s The House on Hope Street)
- November 4, 2001—Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone premieres in London.
- November 6, 2001—The Simpson pays its first homage to Harry, in the “Treehouse of Horror XIII”
- June 22, 2002—The brothers of the band Harry and the Potters play their first show, kicking off Wizard rock.
- November 2002—Rowling files suit against the publishers of Tanya Grotter and the Magic Double Bass, a Russian Harry Potter knockoff. It sold three million but her victory in court blocked it from Western markets.
- July 2005—In Vancouver, 14 copies of “Half-Blood Prince are accidentally sold before the official release, prompting a court order forbidding buyers to disclose any of its contents before its on-sale date.
- July 21, 2007—8.3 million copies of Deathly Hallows sells in the U.S. during its first 24 hours on sale.
- July 2007—By the time the final book, Deathly Hallows, is released, publisher Bloomsbury has spent $20 mil (10 mil in England) on an army of guards, satellite tracking systems and legal contracts to prevent leaks.
- June 18, 2008—Sales of Harry Potter books pass the 400 million mark.
There it is. The spell has been cast by one woman, J.K. Rowling who says, “No story lives unless someone wants to listen” And with the spinoff of “Fantastic Beats and Where to Find Them” and its upcoming sequels I’m sure the magic will keep flowing from fan fiction to rockbands and from Rowling herself, who will wave her wand for us again and tell us what’s next on Pottermore.com (More timeline events can be found in the Time Magazine special edition “Harry Potter”)
Thank you, J.K. Rowling