A new Harry Potter theme park, based on the world-famous wizarding novels written by J K Rowling, will open in Tokyo in 2023.
Like The Making of Harry Potter exhibition at Warner Bros Studio Tour London, it will feature film sets, costumes and props from the movie franchise based on the books.
Fans at the Studio Tour Tokyo will also be able to step into life-size re-creations of some of the film’s most famous locations including Hogwarts, Diagon Alley, Privet Drive and Gringotts Wizarding Bank.
The park will be based at a 30,000 square metre site in Nermira, an area around a half-an-hour’s train ride outside of central Tokyo and famed as the birthplace of Japanese animation production.
An amusement park called Toshimaen with roller coasters and a water park is currently on the site but is due to close down at the end of this month.
One of the largest amusement parks in Tokyo, it’s owned by the Seibu Group.
The railway operator has also sold part of the 22-hectare site to the Tokyo Metropolitan Government for use as an emergency shelter space in the event of a disaster.
A spokesman for Japan’s Itochu Corporation, which is helping to develop the park, said: “The franchise is an enduring and much-loved one by multiple generations, as adults who grew up with Harry Potter now take their own families to the theatres.”
Ann Sarnoff, chairwoman and CEO of Warner Bros, said the theme park will offer “fans of all ages a unique way to get closer to the films” and that the company is “looking forward to creating something very special”.
The original tour, based in Leavesden, Hertfordshire, has welcomed over 14 million visitors since opening in 2012.
Additionally, there are also Harry Potter theme park spin-offs created by Universal Studios in Orlando and Hollywood in the United States, and Osaka, Japan.
J K Rowling published seven books about the boy wizard between 1997 and 2007, which have been turned into eight films between 2001 and 2011.
A spin-off prequel – Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – has also followed, with the third film currently in production. Rowling has said there will be five in total.
News of the new theme park will be welcomed by those working in Tokyo’s hospitality industry.
The capital had been due to host the Olympic and Paralympic Games this summer, but they were cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
Both have now been re-scheduled in Tokyo for 2021.
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Meanwhile, Potter fans are being asked not to gather at King’s Cross station on 1 September for the Back To Hogwarts celebration and instead be part of a virtual event online.
Fans have traditionally gathered annually at the London station and at 11am they raise their wands to mark the Hogwarts Express departure from the fictional Platform Nine and 3/4, as it takes pupils to the school of witchcraft and wizardry for another year.
However, people are being asked to stay at home this year because of the coronavirus pandemic and there will be a live-streamed event featuring appearances from stars of the films including James and Oliver Phelps, Jason Isaacs and Bonnie Wright.