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The Adventure Begins

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The Adventure Begins
By Tiffany Chaparro

A scene from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.
(Photo: Courtesy of Warner Brothers)
In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, the fourth film from the Harry Potter book series, Harry must face some of his biggest challenges. First, he is mysteriously chosen for a dangerous international tournament that pits him against older, more experienced wizards. Then, he must face the powerful and evil Lord Voldemort, who has returned to his human form! And he must deal with all of this while finding a date for Hogwarts Yule Ball dance.

The new director Mike Newell is excited to direct this film and bring to life all the characters from the novel.

"I was very excited when I read the book," Newell said. "I thought there was a really sharp, clear story in it, the essence of which was a thriller."

The Challenge

Two of the biggest production challanges for the movie were filming the detailed Yule Ball dance at Hogwarts and creating the stages of the Triwizard Tournament.

The actors were all given ballroom-dancing lessons before Newell filmed the ball. The art department also decorated the set with beautiful silver and ice-themed holiday designs. The costume department created different designs for the actors' clothes.

In the tournament, Harry must face a giant, fire-breathing Hungarian Horntail dragon with only his wand! For this scene the special-effects department created a 30-foot-tall dragon that throws flames.

In the second part of the movie, the young wizards have to fight water demons to save their friends' lives. Daniel Radcliffe and his costars had to learn how to scuba dive or swim underwater with a tool that helps you breathe. Radcliffe also had to learn how to hold his breath without any scuba equipment while swimming with webbed hands and feet.

Director Newell enjoyed the wonderful set pieces and special effects that helped to make the film, but thinks what really makes the movie interesting is the return of Lord Voldemort.

"Driving the story is Voldemort's plot to return, for which he needs three drops of Harry's blood. Voldemort plans the whole thing to get Harry in his power. The only weapon Harry has to defend himself is his own courage. He's on his own this time—a true hero," Newell says.