Guillermo del Toro keeps talking up how much he’d like to direct Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, but what does that really mean? GDT has been flirting with the series forever, and he recently told MTV Movies Blog that “I’m definitely interested now that the movies have grown darker. They have a contrast between the gloomy existence of the kid and the world he’s exposed to. They have evolved into a really nice universe.”
Obviously GDT would be perfect for this movie. Just yesterday I was talking to someone about how moved I was by the scene [swipe for spoilers] where Harry is walking into the woods, ready to be killed by Voldemort, accompanied by the ghosts of his parents and loved ones. That’s a scene that brought me to tears when I was reading it*, but one that would be so very, very easy to screw up in the movie. Well, easy for anyone who isn’t GDT – I would have full faith that he would nail that scene like John Holmes. GDT is the master of modern fantasy filmmaking, and I don’t think anybody could seriously argue against that.
But now we enter the real world. GDT is notorious for being a guy who gets super excited about projects and attaches himself to them. I love the enthusiasm he has, and it’s a shrewd business move to keep many plates spinning as possible. But that also means that the vast majority of projects that GDT gets involved with will never reach the screen, at least not with him as a director. Unless someone clones the guy.
Still, think of the other side of the coin. If I was Warner Bros I would be excited to get GDT on to my series, especially at the end (Harry Potter as a major Oscar nominee?). And if I was GDT and thinking about things from a more mercenary standpoint, I’d like to get myself on the huge wrap up of a massively successful series where the lowest grossing film to date earned almost 800 million dollars worldwide. Doing that kind of a movie, and making a lot of money for yourself and the studio, is what can allow you to turn around and make smaller, stranger and more personal movies.
I don’t think GDT is going to direct Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, but I’d love to be wrong. I do hope that whoever Warner Bros gets is someone that will treat the material without an overdose of sentimentality, and that they let the last film in the series be the longest one.