Fan fiction has always been an outlet for fans craving more stories featuring their favorite characters. Although, as filmmaking equipment became more easily accessible and more consumer friendly, the popularity and availability of fan films have been on the rise. In this day and age, some of them can even look better than professionally made movies and TV shows.
But considering that this borders on copyright infringement, this trend has caused studios much alarm and has even caused some to call in the lawyers. For example, CBS and Paramount went after a ‘Star Trek’ fan film titled ‘Axanar’ and tied that production in litigation for over a year. Eventually, things settled down and the filmmakers were allowed to proceed with their project with certain conditions, but it set a precedent for studios and future fan films that have recently played out with Warner Bros. and a ‘Harry Potter’ fan film titled ‘Voldemort: Origins of the Heir’. Luckily, just as with the ‘Star Trek’ production, it would seem that the studio has given the fans their blessing to move forward with their labor of love.
While speaking with Polygon, ‘Origins of the Heir’ co-director Gianmaria Pezzato of Tryangle Films revealed that after WB had their Kickstarter campaign shut down in July 2016, the two parties came to some kind of agreement that would allow Pezzato, co-director Stefano Prestia, and the whole crew to continue their work. However, there were some conditions:
“We had a private and confidential discussion with Warner Bros who contacted us during the period of the crowdfunding campaign. The only thing we can say is that they let us proceed with the film, in a non profit way, obviously.”
With WB’s blessing, Tyrangle is back in business. It’s a good thing too because their film looks really awesome. I mean, when fans can create a House Elf as well as some of the best animators in the business, it would be a crime for a cease and desist to keep the movie from coming to fruition. Check out what I mean by watching the first trailer for the fan film:
Diehard Potterheads and casual fans alike will no doubt find the premise behind the film intriguing. But just what inspired this tale that basically takes place between ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’ and the ‘Harry Potter’ series? Pezzato shed some light on what led to the creation of ‘Origins of the Heir’:
“We wondered, ‘What made Tom Riddle become Voldemort? What happened in those years, and what really went down at Hogwarts when he came back?’ There are some clues in the books which have not been transposed at all in the movies, but a lot goes unspoken. This is the story we want to tell: The rise of the Dark Lord before Harry Potter and his first demise.”
Now that their trailer has racked up more than 30 million views on Facebook and more than 1.8 million views on YouTube in a matter of days, the directors are preparing to enter pre-production within the next few months. If all goes well, fans should be able to see the finished product online before the end of the year without paying a single sickle, knut, or galleon.
What do you think about ‘Voldemort: Origins of the Heir’? Are you excited to see this fan film set in the wizarding world? And how do you feel about major movie studios having a say in fan films? Let us know in the comments.