Harry Potter: Film Vault: Volume 11: Hogwarts Professors and Staff
During Harry Potter’s tenure at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, he is taught by a variety of professors who not only educate him in the magical skills he will need to defeat the Dark Lord, Voldemort, but also impart to him their wisdom and support as Harry finds his way through his school years. Not every teacher can be considered a positive influence; in fact, some of his professors are extremely silly and others sink so low as to torment and suppress Harry and his fellow students.
Harry Potter’s professors and the other Hogwarts staff members are uniquely individual in their personalities and appearance. The costume designers—Judianna Makovsky for Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, Lindy Hemming for Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, and Jany Temime, who started on Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and stayed for the remainder of the movies—had fun and fashionable characters to clothe, although the pressure to please the fans was always on their minds. “Trying to do the first of the series was absolutely terrifying,” says Judianna Makovsky. “I really didn’t want to disappoint anybody.” Creating the right costumes for the characters was essential; the fabrics and colors a character wears give audiences an important glimpse into their personality. Actors also find inspiration in their wardrobe. Before filming, each actor would meet with the costume designer to view and discuss ideas for their clothes. When actor Richard Harris visited Judianna Makovsky about costumes for Professor Albus Dumbledore for Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, she showed him some preliminary sketches for the headmaster. “He stared at them for a while and then said, ‘Thank you. Thank you. Now I know what my character is,’ and that was it. Richard Harris made it simple.” For Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, Lindy Hemming continued with the overall look established in the first movie. “That didn’t mean you had to keep them in the exact same costumes, because new scenes dictated new clothes,” she explains, “but we tried not to have a jump in the look, obviously.” She gives great credit to the talented craftspeople in the costume department for their skills and imagination. “They had a sensibility to make things in a straightforward way, but [they] always added little touches. They’d discover a marvelous button to use or suggest a strange little pocket you wouldn’t have thought of that added a new dimension to the piece. These were people who loved the Harry Potter books and films so much that they wanted to give an input.”
When Jany Temime joined the Harry Potter team, she “didn’t realize how important [her role] was,” she says. “If [I had,] I would have been completely paralyzed and incapable of doing anything!” Temime recognized that the staff and professors of Hogwarts should keep their “wizardy wear,” for the most part, but she did reinterpret the look of one beloved member of the faculty. She felt that Rubeus Hagrid’s wardrobe should better address his job of tending the grounds and the Dark Forest, but also reflect his new responsibility as Care of Magical Creatures professor in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, so she provided him with a pocket-filled waistcoat and thicker trousers and boots. In order to accommodate the larger versions of Robbie Coltrane’s clothes needed for his double Martin Bayfield, Temime created her own prints, so they could easily be blown up to three times the original size.
The costume department worked closely with chief makeup artist Amanda Knight and chief hair stylist Eithne Fennel, who served in those roles on all eight Harry Potter films. Knight and Fennel would sit down with the costume designer several times to discuss ideas for each character’s hair and look while they reviewed sketches of the outfits. They also noted that they worked with each film’s director, who would want to put their mark on the overall design as well. “We always showed them pictures of existing artists who were coming back,” says Fennel, “and ask[ed] them if they were happy with that look, or did they want to change it.” Sometimes, small changes were made, “but most times they were happy.” We are fortunate that the insights of all these creative women, gained by deeply educating themselves about each character, brought to life the Hogwarts professors and staff, some sporting disheveled hair or werewolf scars, others dressed in checkered tweeds, floating silks, well-worn leather, or fluffy acid pinks
OPPOSITE TOP: Professor Snape (Alan Rickman) helps Ron Weasley (Rupert Grint) and Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) with their homework assignment in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire; OPPOSITE BOTTOM: Two of Professor Gilderoy Lockhart’s required textbooks; LEFT: Defense Against the Dark Arts Professor Dolores Umbridge (Imelda Staunton); BELOW: Professor Lockhart (Kenneth Branagh) begins his class year in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets; BOTTOM: Dolores Umbridge threatens to expel Professor Sybill Trelawney (Emma Thompson), who is protected by Transfiguration Professor Minerva McGonagall (Maggie Smith) in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
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|August 30, 2021|
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