Why Did Chris Columbus Leave the Harry Potter? When it first aired on New Year’s Day 2022, the Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts special on HBO Max was a very moving experience for Potter fans to watch. When Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone came out in November 2001, it took us right back to our childhoods.
But all the talking about the past makes us wonder why things changed so much from the first movie to the eighth. Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, Hermione Granger, and the other kids’ amazing adventures at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry were definitely shaped by the amazing first director of the franchise, Chris Columbus, who oversaw the first two movies (Sorcerer’s Stone and Chamber of Secrets) before leaving the series. But why did he leave?
Why Did Chris Columbus Leave the Harry Potter?
After Chamber of Secrets, Columbus stopped being the director of the Harry Potter movies. For the third movie, Prisoner of Azkaban, he was the executive producer. After that, he left the wizarding world for good. The Hollywood Reporter said in an interview in November 2011 that Columbus quit because he was “emotionally and physically exhausted.”
“They shot Sorcerer’s Stone for 160 days, which is way too long,” Columbus said. “Then, as soon as we were done, we started working on Chamber of Secrets, which took another 160 days. That’s about 320 days of shooting if you don’t count the second unit. He also said that he “could barely speak” and was “emotionally and physically exhausted.” Leaving a job to take care of one’s mental health is a very good reason! It’s good that he knew what he could do and when to stop.
He also wanted to spend more time with his four children. “At the time, my kids were still young, so I wasn’t able to see them grow up. I missed going out to dinner with them. I told myself, “I can’t do this for another six, seven, or eight years. My kids will grow up and I won’t get to know them.'” His four kids with his wife, Monica Devereux, are all grown up now. Eleanor is 32, Brendan is 30, Violet is 28, and Isabella is 26.
What Happened to Chris Columbus?
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter in 2021 to mark the 20th anniversary of “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” Columbus talked about what it was like to make the movies, including why he stopped after the second one.
Columbus said that at the beginning of the trip, he had every plan of directing all seven films. At the time, “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” hadn’t been split into two movies yet. “I was naive,” the director said. I thought, “Oh, I have enough energy to make all seven of these movies.” But that wasn’t the case.”
Columbus said that the shooting plan was the hardest part. Each movie took 160 days to shoot, which is already a long time for a movie, and the two movies were shot right after each other. So, when they finished “Chamber of Secrets,” Columbus said he was both mentally and physically drained. Columbus also said, “I wasn’t able to see my young children at the time growing up. I missed going out to dinner with them.
I told myself, “I can’t do this for another six, seven, or eight years. My kids will grow up and I won’t get to know them.'” Columbus was able to stay on for the third movie, but this time as a director, which gave him much more freedom at work and let him spend more time with his family.
Will Chris Columbus Join the Harry Potter Franchise?
Well, the director Chris has left the series, but on the other hand, he wants to direct another Harry Potter movie. He would do this by turning the stage play “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” into a movie with the same cast.
He wants Emma Watson, Daniel Radcliffe, and all the other actors from the first movie to be in this one, too. But it looks like that might be a very big and maybe even impossible job for him, since the actors who played the original Harry Potter characters have moved on with their lives and want to grow as actors in new genres and roles.
But Daniel also says that he is open to the idea of coming back if he is given the chance. If all of this came true, we could probably see the innovative film becoming a reality.
Who Directed the Harry Potter Movies After Chris Columbus?
Alfonso Cuarón was hired to direct Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, but Chris Columbus stayed on as a director so he could spend time with his kids and still be a part of the project. “As a producer, I don’t have to be there all the time,” he said to THR. “I can work a few hours a day on the set. I can go to some talks about visual effects, but that means I can get home in time for dinner and see my kids off to school in the morning.
Columbus said that his family was ready to go back to the US when the shooting was over. “They had missed their friends, so it seemed like the right time to leave.” Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire was directed by Mike Newell, and David Yates was in charge of Order of the Phoenix, Half-Blood Prince, and the two-part Deathly Hallows.
The Harry Potter: Return to Hogwarts special on HBO Max was a moving experience for Potter fans. The first director of the franchise, Chris Columbus, oversaw the first two movies (Sorcerer’s Stone and Chamber of Secrets) before leaving the series. After Chamber of Secrets, Columbus stopped being the director of the Harry Potter movies, and for the third movie, Prisoner of Azkaban, he was the executive producer.
He left the wizarding world for good because he was emotionally and physically exhausted. Columbus stayed on for the third movie, but this time as a director, giving him more freedom at work and allowing him to spend more time with his family. After the series, Alfonso Cuarón was hired to direct Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, but Columbus stayed on as a director to spend time with his kids and be a part of the project.
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