Harry Potter has cast his last spell, his creator JK Rowling said at the gala opening of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child in London's West End.
Asked yesterday whether the stage production, and the publication of its script, which is being billed as the eighth in the Harry Potter series, heralds a new phase of stories, Rowling said: "No. No. He goes on a very big journey during these two plays and then, yeah, I think we're done. This is the next generation, you know. So, I'm thrilled to see it realised so beautifully but, no, Harry is done now."
The British writer said it was not a difficult decision to put her Potter creation onstage thanks to producer Sonia Friedman's vision for the show. "[It] chimed perfectly with the material I had about the next generation and I could see it would work perfectly. So, I never wanted to write another novel, but this will give the fans something special." Young Harry Potter enthusiasts queued outside the ornate Palace Theatre for a glimpse of Rowling and the play's cast.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, a script rather than a novel, is set 19 years after Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows and was published yesterday around the world. It was based on an idea by Rowling.
The play, which is sold out through to next May, opens ahead of the November movie version of Rowling's Potter spin-off book Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.