Potterheads around the world, rejoice! We now have official anime versions of the Harry Potter characters we know and love so well! Warner Bros. Japan has licensed images of all your favorites — including the Marauders, Hedwig, and Buckbeak — to use on official Harry Potter merchandise. The all-new HP swag is currently available exclusively in Japan, but won't take long for the items make their way across that big, Pacific pond.
For years, fans have been calling for an anime adaptation of J.K. Rowling's beloved series. A quick search for "Harry Potter" on deviantArt shows just how popular with Potterheads anime-esque fanart is. Although Warner Bros. Japan isn't using the new anime versions of the Harry Potter characters to announce a Japanese adaptation — yet — that hasn't stopped fans from hoping that an anime or manga series is on its way.
Right now, you can get your hands on some sweet file folders featuring your favorite characters. Pinback buttons and cell phone charms in mystery boxes are slated for a Spring 2016 release, as are acrylic keychains. Anime Harry Potter merchandise is priced between 300 and 750 Yen — about 2.49 to 6.23 USD — which means you won't have to spend all your galleons to get your Harry Potter fix.
The full character line-up is as follows:
- Harry Potter
- Ron Weasley
- Hermione Granger
- Draco Malfoy
- Fred and George Weasley
- Severus Snape
- Albus Dumbledore
- Sirius Black
- Remus Lupin
- James Potter
There are a few notable absences. On the side of the light, Dobby, Hagrid, Luna, McGonagall, and Neville are missing, as are the more popular, dark-aligned characters Bellatrix Lestrange and Lord Voldemort. Also, James Potter is a strange choice for merchandising, in my opinion, as is Buckbeak. I won't complain about the hippogriff, however, because he's hella cute.
The 13 characters selected for ani-fication almost certainly reflect the tastes of Japanese Potterheads. If you don't see your favorite character on the list, don't worry. If the merchandise is popular — and you know it will be — Warner Bros. Japan will surely release a bigger, wider lineup for its next season.
Some fans have expressed dismay at the anime depictions of the Weasley brothers, saying that the boys are more blond than redheaded. While they certainly aren't as blond as the platinum-locked Mr. Malfoy, they are noticeably less-ginger than Remus Lupin. (It's worthwhile to note that, although Rowling describes Lupin as having brown hair, actor David Thewlis' locks were decidedly more red than brown when Harry Potter hit the silver screen.) Also, more than a few Potterheads have noticed the similarity between Fred and George Weasley and another set of anime twins: Hikaru and Kaoru Hitachiin from Ouran High School Host Club.
As of this writing, anime Harry Potter merchandise has yet to make it to English-language retailers that deal in Japanese fare, such as Blippo Kawaii Shop and Daiso Japan. But keep your wands Lumos'd, Potterheads; it's only a matter of time.