About Those Harry Potter Rumours

Will book seven become two movies?

You may have seen yesterday that The Mail On Sunday reported that Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows will be split into two movies (we'll not discuss why you were reading The Mail). This would make potential sense, since the final book in the Potter series is by far the most plot-dense and fans would want to see proper time given to the fates of all characters. But forgive us if we don't believe them. When we spoke to Warner Bros they told us that "no decision has been made about Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows".

One reason that makes perfect sense is that there isn't a script in existence, Empire has had confirmed. Steve Kloves, who will write the last in the series, hasn't starting writing the script yet, since the WGA strike prevents him from doing so. Without a working script, The Mail On Sunday's assertion that the decision to make two films was for "artistic, rather than financial, reason" doesn't hold water. How can you assess what is best, artistically speaking, for a script that doesn't exist yet? And the crew would certainly not be told that they'd be shooting two films back-to-back at this stage (the last movie's not set to shoot until February 2009). None of our sources back up the Mail's rumour and all say that the decision is a way off.

We're in two minds about whether Deathly Hallows should be one or two movies. On the one hand, you'd have to cut a lot to fit the whole tale properly in to 150 minutes – although you could chop swathes of the section where Harry, Ron and Hermione head into the woods. On the other hand, two movies could stretch the material a little thinly. With the right director we can see it working. But, whatever finally happens, please know that the question of how many movies Deathly Hallows becomes is not one anybody, including the film's makers, currently knows the answer to.