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Lifestyle

Harry Potter fans may now enter the Forbidden Forest

These woods were strictly off-limits for the young Hogwarts students, but now visitors of the Warner Brothers Studio Tour London are officially invited to discover them for themselves.

The Warner Brothers Studio Tour London on Friday is opening a permanent extension to the Harry Potter theme park that was developed after the last of the original films came out. It recreates the atmosphere of the Forbidden Forest.

As Harry Potter fans well know, the Forbidden Forest is strictly off-limits to Hogwarts students, even though Harry, Ron and Hermione have also defied Professor Dumbledore's orders. Now visitors are officially invited to enter a space that captures the mood of these spooky woods.

At a promotional event for the new exhibition, Nick Dudman, the chief special effects makeup artist for all eight "Harry Potter" movies, described the forest as "a creepy, dangerous place. It'll be colder and spookier and nasty things could happen to you. Nothing will eat you, but there might be a moment when you might perhaps suspect that something might."

Evanna Lynch, who played Luna Lovegood in the films, recalls that when she read the novels, she was always afraid for Harry when he entered the forest, which she saw as a "symbol of Harry's courage," she said.

Jason Isaacs, who embodied Harry's opponent Draco Malfoy in the films, remembers thinking while reading those scenes, "If it's forbidden, you have to go!" For him, "There's nothing more important than breaking rules in life. And that's what this forest stands for," he said. 

However, Isaacs said he will not allow his daughter, who is afraid of spiders, to see the exhibit until she is more comfortable with arachnids.

Entrance to the Forbidden Forest attraction is included in the ticket to the Warner Brothers Studio Tour London, an exhibition which opened in 2012  in the "Harry Potter" studios in Leavesden, near London. It features the iconic props, costumes and sets of the films.

eg/kbm (dpa, APE)

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