Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002) Poster


at around 2h 25 mins) When Lucius Malfoy tries to curse Harry at the end, he mutters,"Avada..." As mentioned in the fourth book, this is the beginning of an Unforgivable Curse named Avada Kedavra, or the killing curse. This rather makes it look like Malfoy is stupid enough to actually try to kill a child in the middle of a school, chock-full of students and teachers, with no means of escaping. But as Jason Isaacs has explained in several interviews, the novel mentions no specific spell for him to use and, since he had just been reading the fourth book at the time, this was the only curse he could remember.
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(at around 1h 22 mins) When Draco Malfoy says "I didn't know you could read" to Harry (looking like Goyle with polyjuice potion) it was actually improvised because Tom Felton forgot his line.
Although based on the second shortest book, this is the longest of the films. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007), which is based on the longest book, is the second shortest of the films.
(at around 15 mins) The opal necklace, which plays an important role in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (2009), can briefly be glimpsed inside a display case in Borgin and Burkes' shop in Knockturn Alley when Harry first enters.
Fourteen Ford Anglias were destroyed to create the scene where Harry and Ron crash into the Whomping Willow.
Rupert Grint has such a severe case of arachnophobia, he has still not watched the entire scene where Ron and Harry are in Aragog's hollow. In that scene, Ron's frightened look and his uncomfortable squirming throughout was not from acting, but from Rupert being legitimately terrified at even the thought of spiders.
The Weasley's car is a Ford Anglia. This is actually the same color and model car, that J.K. Rowling, and her best friend from school, used to ride around in when they were younger. She used the car for the book, and later the movie, out of her fond memories driving in it.
Shirley Henderson, who played Moaning Myrtle, is the oldest actress (age 37) to portray a Hogwarts student.
Daniel Radcliffe was initially only offered 125,000 pounds (approximately 181,500 dollars) for this film. The actors' union, Equity, stepped in and negotiated new terms which increased his salary to roughly two million pounds (three million dollars).
(at around 2h 25 mins) Daniel Radcliffe was required to shave his leg for the scene where Harry reveals he's missing a sock.
During production, Emma Watson frequently brought her pet hamster Millie on set. Unfortunately, Millie passed away shortly after shooting began. The set department for the film created a specially-made hamster coffin, complete with velvet lining and the name "Millie" engraved on the top. "I don't think a hamster has ever had a better send-off." Watson said.
Christian Coulson landed the role as Tom Riddle, even though he was 23 and exceeded the 15-17 age group set for auditions.
It was Jason Isaacs's idea to have Lucius Malfoy sport long blond hair, as well as carry a walking stick inside of which he would conceal his wand. The books make no mention of either of these things. Isaacs grew attached to the walking stick and at one point tried to walk off with it, though he was caught.
Hugh Grant was originally cast as Gilderoy Lockhart but was forced to withdraw at the last moment because of scheduling conflicts.
Richard Harris died a few weeks before the film's release.
(at around 20 mins) A gag from the book is rendered incomprehensible in the film, due to lack of information. While chatting with the Grangers at the bookshop, Mr. Weasley says, "I understand that other Muggles are afraid of you." This is because they are dentists.
Full-size models replaced the actors in scenes where their characters have been petrified.
(at around 17 mins) When Hagrid is escorting Harry out of Knockturn Alley, and again when Lockhart turns to show his other profile to the photographer, hardcover editions of Harry Potter books can be seen on the shelves.
The animatronic Phoenix used to portray Fawkes looked so lifelike (despite the fact that Phoenixes are mythical creatures) that Richard Harris (Albus Dumbledore) thought it was a real living bird when he first saw it.
According to J.K. Rowling, Moaning Myrtle was a member of Ravenclaw House.
Nurses were drafted into the production when an outbreak of head lice occurred among the young cast.
Filming began three days after the release of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001). This makes Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets the only movie in the series that was produced and released within one year after its predecessor. Although Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (2010) and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (2011) were released 6 months apart, they were filmed back-to-back.
(at around 55 mins) During the Quidditch Match, some of the music used while Harry and Draco chase the Golden Snitch was used during the speeder chase scene in Star Wars: Episode II - Attack of the Clones (2002). John Williams did both scores.
Director Chris Columbus instructed cinematographer Roger Pratt to bring a darker look to the film, reflecting the darker tone of the story. Hence, the sets were lit with more subdued lighting and the color palette was desaturated a bit. These changes would continue throughout the series with each film getting darker and increasingly desaturated.
Lucius Malfoy originally was not supposed to have long hair, however, when Jason Isaacs was cast in the role, he requested the longer hair, so that he could be distinguished from his son Draco. In order to keep the hair from falling in front of his face, Isaacs had to keep his head tilted back, which further added to the snobbishness of the character, as it made him appear as if he was "looking down his nose at everyone".
Young Hagrid is played by Martin Bayfield, who stands in for Robbie Coltrane as his height double in all the Potter films. His voice is dubbed by Coltrane, for the sake of consistency.
The set for Dumbledore's office was, at the time of its construction, the most expensive set built for the films. Both Chris Columbus, and Production Designer Stuart Craig agreed that, as headmaster, Dumbledore should have the most elaborate office possible. However, they were informed that the proposed design, with its massive stone columns, bookcases, curio cabinets, paintings on the walls, tables filled with various objects, antique desk and throne-like chair, and a giant telescope, would be far too expensive to produce. The producers ultimately were able to secure the funds needed to build the set.
Robbie Coltrane had to turn down a part in The West Wing (1999) to reprise his role as Hagrid.
During the shoot, the part of Dobby was played by a ball on a stick (he was added digitally later, of course).
In the UK, this became the first movie to achieve a million DVD sales in its first weekend.
During post-production, Producer David Heyman went to visit Richard Harris in the hospital. Though he was very weak from his illness, Harris insisted that the role of Dumbledore not be recast. Sadly, Harris passed away shortly before production was to begin on the next film, necessitating a recast.
Many people think that Professor Gilderoy Lockhart is a character based on J.K. Rowling's ex-husband. Rowling has said, on her official website, that Lockhart is based in an egocentric person that she really dislikes, but he is not her ex-husband.
On an episode of Have I Got News for You (1990) broadcast around this film's release, the panelists discuss an article claiming that the Russian President (later Premier) Vladimir Putin was deeply disturbed and offended that Dobby the House elf seemed to have been created in his image. There is an undeniable resemblance either way.
Zoë Wanamaker does not appear in this film as Hogwarts' flying instructor, Madam Hooch, as Wanamaker found the salary unsatisfying. Her character was written out by giving Hooch's speaking lines to McGonagall and other characters.
(at around 11 mins) In order to create a realistic image of the floating set of needles (knitting in The Burrow), one of the crew coerced his mother to let them film her for several hours as she did her own knitting.
Many Harry Potter fans went to see Scooby-Doo (2002) just to see a trailer for this film.
One of only two Harry Potter films not to be nominated for an Academy Award (Oscar) in some category, the other being Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (2007).
To get a sense of how nasty his character should be, Jason Isaacs had to go back and watch Tom Felton's performance in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001).
Daniel Radcliffe has said that "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets" is his favorite book.
Some of the portraits in Hogwarts are actually faces of Stuart Craig and Executive Producer Mark Radcliffe.
The film earned over 88 million dollars in the U.S. on its opening weekend, which at the time, placed it third in the all-time biggest opening, behind Spider-Man (2002) and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001).
A cinema manager in Stavanger, Norway reported that the film was making his younger patrons ill. Evidently many children who had overindulged on sweets and popcorn were throwing up when Ron begins vomiting giant slugs. "It is not a particularly fun task for our employees to have to wash away the sick," he said.
Jude Law was deemed too young to play Gilderoy Lockhart.
All four of Chris Columbus's children appear in this movie. Eleanor Columbus plays Susan Bones (also plays her in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001)), Brendan Columbus plays a boy in study hall, Violet Columbus plays the little girl with flowers, and Isabella Columbus plays the little girl in the bookstore.
Crabbe and Goyle have no dialogue, or at least not as themselves in their own voices.
The tapestries, hanging in the Gryffindor Common Room, are copies of the "Lady and the Unicorn" series, a set of 16th century tapestries, that are now displayed in the Cluny Museum in Paris.
The various bookcases and cabinets in Dumbledore's office actually concealed removable walls (known in the film industry as "wild walls") that allowed the cameras to have enough room to be able to shoot from various angles, as the set, despite its grandiose appearance, was rather cramped.
Richard E. Grant and Bill Nighy were considered for the role of Lucius Malfoy. The latter would later sign on to the seventh film, for the role of Rufus Scrimgeour.
(at around 1h 19 mins) During the filming of the scene where Crabbe and Goyle eat the floating cupcakes, Jamie Waylett and Josh Herdman both cut their mouths on the hooks which were used to attach the cupcakes to the fishing line that was holding them up.
(at around 1h 5 mins) The salute that Snape and Lockhart, and Harry and Draco, make during their Dueling Club session, is a modified version of the salute made in fencing.
Tickets for the film went on sale in Britain more than a month before the film was due to open.
The character of Mr. Borgin, played by Edward Tudor-Pole, was cut from the final film. The scenes were later included as a bonus feature on the DVD.
The train station interior used in the film is King's Cross in North London, whereas the exterior shot is actually St. Pancras. The two stations are adjacent to one another, but not the same building. This was done because the architecture of St. Pancras is much more visually appealing.
The set for Flourish and Blotts is a redress of the set that served as Olivander's Wand Shop in Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001).
Due to schedule conflicts, John Williams was not able to deliver a fully elaborated score. Composer-arranger William Ross was hired to adapt Williams' material to complete the film's score and was subsequently conducting the orchestra during the recording sessions.
Eddie Redmayne, who was later cast as Newt Scamander in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (2016), auditioned for the role of Tom Riddle.
In his appearance on 8 Out of 10 Cats (2005), Alan Cumming revealed that he had been offered the role of Gilderoy Lockhart in the film, but when he learned from his agent, how much more money Rupert Grint, with whom he shares an agent, would be getting paid, he refused to sign on, as he would not agree to be paid less than "a 12 year-old amateur!".
The title used by the crew to disguise the shoot (and printed on the clapper boards) was "Incident on 57th Street", the title of a 1973 Bruce Springsteen song.
(at around 1h 13 mins) The spell to open Dumbledore's office is Sherbet Lemon. That is a hint to the first book, where Dumbledore admits that he grew quite addicted to sherbet lemons.
The film cast includes one Oscar winner: Maggie Smith; and four Oscar nominees: Richard Harris, Kenneth Branagh, Julie Walters, and John Cleese.
Jason Isaacs originally auditioned for Gilderoy Lockhart, but Chris Columbus asked him to try for Lucius Malfoy too. Isaacs didn't want to, because it was too similar to his role as Captain Hook, but was too polite to say no. When he was offered the part, Isaacs almost turned it down, but family members convinced him to do it.
The camera used by Colin Creevey is an Argus C3 Matchmatic, a cheap, and very popular, 35mm rangefinder camera manufactured in the U.S. from 1939 to 1966.
Chris Columbus was unsure about Jason Isaacs' ideas for Lucius Malfoy's costume, hair and voice. It was Daniel Radcliffe who commented that he thought the changes were 'really cool' and Columbus went along with it.
A story circulated, that Emma Watson broke her left wrist during filming, and that you can just see a little bit of the cast under her sleeve in some scenes, but it turned out to be false.
Through advance ticket sales at Odeon cinemas, the film generated more than one million pounds (roughly 200,000 tickets) before its release in the UK. An additional eight million pounds was generated through preview showings at UK cinemas (both Odeon and non-Odeon).
One of Chris Columbus's daughters had trouble reading, until she read Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone in two days, which opened her eyes to the world of books. After reading the Chamber of Secrets, she asked Columbus to make films out of them, but there were fifty other directors already interested. Columbus fell in love with the first two books as well.
Sally Mortemore was cut from the film as Hogwarts Librarian Madam Irma Pince. She only appears in the background and briefly at the staff table during dinner scenes.
Dobby's ears were based on an art department dog named Max that used to sit under the designers' desks.
Despite the fact that Crabbe and Goyle have more screen-time in this film than any of the others, they have no dialogue, as their voices were overdubbed by Daniel Radcliffe and Rupert Grint for the Polyjuice Potion sequence.
Chris Columbus has a figure of Dobby the Elf in his office.
The first name of the character of Salazar Slytherin is based on the former Portuguese dictator Salazar, as it was in Portugal, and namely the city of Oporto where J.K. Rowling had the idea and wrote her favorite parts of the first Harry Potter book.
Madam Pomfrey only appeared in the background of the first film, played by an extra. Here, Gemma Jones assumes the role, and keeps it for the remainder of the franchise.
Chris Columbus was amazed how beautifully Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint matured over the Harry Potter series, compared to some child actors, who start out adorable, and then either lose that, or become bad actors as they grow older.
In order to prevent damage to the 500-year-old building, a false wall was erected at Gloucester Cathedral for the scene in which Harry and his friends discover the message from the Heir of Slytherin written on the wall.
Kenneth Branagh (Professor Gilderoy Lockhart), Robert Hardy (Cornelius Fudge), and John Cleese (Nearly Headless Nick) all previously appeared in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein (1994), which Branagh also directed. They played Victor Frankenstein, Professor Waldman, and Professor Krempe respectively.
Joseph Morgan auditioned for the role of Tom Marvolo Riddle.
This and Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001) are director Chris Columbus's two biggest financial hits.
Because John Williams had a very tight schedule, the music in several scenes is temp-tracked from Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001).
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(at around 1h 29 mins) When Tom Riddle sucks Harry into his diary, taking him back fifty years, the date is the 13th of June. This is a clever insertion, as from the point in time when this happens in Harry's second year, dating it back fifty years to the 13th of June, was in fact a Friday.
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Caio Cesar, a prominent Brazilian voice actor, who dubbed Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter and in other films, was also a military cop, and died at the age of 27 in 2015, after being shot at the Complexo do Alemão slums, in Rio de Janeiro.
The Weasleys' car registration number is 7990 TD.
Fiona Shaw, who portrays a woman despising the supernatural and witchcraft, in this film, ironically portrays a powerful witch in True Blood (2008).
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Kate Duchêne, who plays Miss Hardbroom on the television series The Worst Witch (1998), was reportedly offered a role in the movie, but supposedly declined.
When Chris Columbus scripted Young Sherlock Holmes (1985), Watson believed Holmes obsessed over a case, because unlike other boys his age, even at Christmas, he had no family to which to go home, like Harry Potter or Kevin McCallister, and Columbus has ties to both the Harry Potter and Home Alone franchises.
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Although Chris Columbus returned to direct, Frank Oz said, in an interview with The A.V. Club, that he was asked to direct this film, but he had no interest on it.
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The second of eight movies based on the Harry Potter book series by J.K. Rowling.
In 1998's "Armageddon", Harry Stanton (Bruce Willis) sarcastically called Dr. Roland Quincy (Jason Isaacs) "Mr. Wizard". Four years later, Isaacs began portraying wizard Lucius Malfoy.
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The Harry Potter series and Young Sherlock Holmes (1985) which was scripted by this film's director Chris Columbus share many similarities, e.g. head boys.
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The trivia items below may give away important plot points.

at around 2h 25 mins) The script originally said that Hermione would hug Harry and Ron in the final scene. As the then 11-year-old Emma Watson was embarrassed about having to hug the boys in front of the entire cast, Chris Columbus allowed her to change the scene so that Hermione just hugs Harry then starts to hug Ron but the two get embarrassed and resolve to only shake hands. Watson also stated in a recent interview that she kept letting Daniel Radcliffe go too quickly, so the film was "frozen" for a few seconds to make the hug look like it lasted longer than it actually did. Her hesitation with Ron is also taken by fans as a precursor to the relationship that will develop between the two characters.
at around 2h 5 mins) Foreign language translations had to change Tom Marvolo Riddle's name so that an appropriate anagram could be formed: In Spanish, his name became "Tom Sorvolo Ryddle", which transforms into "Soy Lord Voldemort". In French, his name is "Tom Elvis Jedusor", which becomes "Je suis Voldemort". In Dutch, his name is "Marten Asmodom Vilijn", which is an anagram for "Mijn naam is Voldemort". In Turkish the name is "Tom Marvoldo Riddle", which makes up "Adim Lord Voldemort". In Brazilian Portuguese the name is "Tom Servolo Riddle", which makes up "Eis Lord Voldemort". In Danish, his name is "Romeo G. Detlev Jr.", which makes up "Jeg er Voldemort". In Italian his name is "Tom Orvoloson Riddle", which makes up "Son io Lord Voldemort". In German his name is "Tom Vorlost Riddle", which makes up "Ist Lord Voldemort". In Icelandic his name is "Trevor Délgome", which makes up "Ég er Voldemort". In Swedish his name is "Tom Gus Mervolo Dolder", which makes up "Ego sum Lord Voldemort" (which is actually in Latin).
at around 2h 20 mins) The "Let's just hope Mr. Potter will always be around to save the day" dialogue (see quotes) was improvised by Daniel Radcliffe and Jason Isaacs.
at around 1h 16 mins) When Hagrid charges into Dumbledore's office to defend Harry, he is carrying a dead rooster in his hands. This is in reference to a scene in the book (cut from the movie) where Hagrid finds all the roosters dead. The sound of a cock-crow is fatal to a basilisk.
Chris Columbus wanted the movement of the camera to be snake-like, reflecting the basilisk's movement throughout the castle. Hence, certain scenes were filmed using hand-held cameras, which allowed for more fluid camera movement, and Columbus at one point, actually steered the camera operator (by holding him by the shoulders), in order to get the shots exactly where he wanted them.
at around 21 mins) In a bit of foreshadowing that is only seen in the movie version, Lucius Malfoy takes one book out of Ginny Weasley's cauldron, but drops two back in.
at around 33 mins) Although the subplot, which involved Percy Weasley and Penelope Clearwater (when Ginny discovered them kissing, and promised not to tell anybody) was cut, while Nearly Headless Nick is on his way to the Great Hall, he does say: "Hello Percy, Ms. Clearwater," to the couple as they walk out.
at around 1h 21 mins) In the book, the Polyjuice Potion changes a person completely, including their voice. You will note that there was no change in Mad-Eye Moody's voice in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (2005). Harry and Ron do not have to disguise their voices when they confront Malfoy, but instead have to be careful about the way that they talk in order to sell their identities of Crabbe and Goyle, so that Malfoy doesn't suspect anything.
The filmmakers assumed that the Chamber of Secrets' only appearance would be in this film. However, the Chamber ends up making a second appearance in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 (2011). Since the set had been dismantled, it had to be constructed again.
at around 1h 24 mins) When Harry and Ron are under the Polyjuice Potion, and interrogating Malfoy, he asks Goyle (Harry), if a small wrapped gift is his, and he answers no. However, in numerous freeze frames throughout the movie, the gift can be seen in Harry's possession.
at around 1h 28 mins) When Harry speaks to Tom Riddle by writing in the diary, the handwriting seen isn't actually that of Daniel Radcliffe. Chris Columbus didn't feel that Radcliffe's handwriting was how Harry would write, so an extra's handwriting was used instead.
While writing "The Deathly Hallows", J.K. Rowling was seriously considering bringing the Ford Anglia back to defend Ron, from a pair of Death Eaters that corner him on the castle grounds. The car was to emerge from the forest, and run the Death Eaters straight into a wall of the castle, the cars lights then gave out slowly as if it died, but then J.K. Rowling opted out of it, as she thought the Ford Anglia would most likely have been destroyed due to living in the forest for too long, and the idea itself seemed childish to her.
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The second highest grossing film of 2002.
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In the trailer, it shows Harry in the Chamber of Secrets, but not once does it show the complete head of Salazar Slytherin, or the basilisk.
at around 21 mins) Lucius Malfoy slipped Tom Riddle's Diary into Ginny Weasley's book basket, in the book shop, after demeaning her for her second-hand book. It is behind the book he first took out of the basket.
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