Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince updates

The series of books may be complete but fans of Harry Potter still have 2 more movie adaptations to look forward to. Next up is Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, in which JK Rowling's wizarding world is on high alert after realising that Lord Voldemort (real name Tom Riddle) is back with a vengeance.

You can expect plenty of flashbacks in Half-Blood Prince, which focuses a great deal on Voldemort's back-story as Hogwarts principal Albus Dumbledore and Harry Potter, now 16, try to uncover He-Who-Must-Not-Be Named's secrets and weaknesses - if they are ever to defeat the dark wizard.

Order of the Phoenix's David Yates in back in the director's chair for Half-Blood Prince, working with a script by Steve Kloves (who has, incidentally, adapted all the Potter books except for Order of the Phoenix).

In terms of new additions to the Potter cast, Jim Broadbent will be playing the extravagent new Potions professor Horace Slughorn. It's excellent casting, and I can't wait to see Broadbent all padded out, wearing Slughorn's giant walrus moustache, and eating crystallised pineapple.

After numerous rumours that Naomi Watts would be stepping into the role, it turns out that British actress Helen McCrory will be playing Narcissa Malfoy, the bleached blonde mother of Harry's arch-enemy Draco Malfoy, and sister to Bellatrix Lestrange (Helena Bonham Carter), Voldemort's right-hand woman.

In terms of child performers, Jessie Cave is playing Lavender Brown, Ron's new girlfriend. Hero Fiennes Tiffin is Tom Riddle at age 11, while 16-year-old Frank Dillane plays the teenage Riddle.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is one of the more emotional Potter books, with a shocking, if not particularly surprising, ending. The film version is set for release at the end of November 2008.


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