In the summer, we invited film fans to get a taste for how magical meals and confectionery (both real and replica) were created for the Harry Potter film series as we hosted our first ever Sweets and Treats feature.
Prop and cake makers held delectable demonstrations on how jelly snakes were moulded, sugar skulls were decorated and ice-cream sundaes were piped during production. Based in the Ministry Munchies kiosk from Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, they showcased the techniques used to construct the floating pudding from Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (that Dobby drops on the Dursleys’ guests) and edible Gillyweed, as used in the Second Task of the Triwizard Tournament in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Visitors got the chance to spot the difference between real bakes and prop fakes as they saw edible delights being created and got up close to original artefacts.
Summer also marked the debut of our Butterbeer ice-cream and the edible delight is now permanently available from our new backlot café. During Sweets and Treats, and in keeping with the ice-cream theme, visitors were also be able to learn how towering ‘frozen’ desserts were assembled outside Florean Fortescue’s ice-cream parlour on the Diagon Alley set.
During production, graphic designers were tasked with creating dozens of unique sweet boxes and wrappers for treats from Honeydukes and Weasleys’ Wizard Wheezes. In the end they created more than 120 different items for the Weasley twins’ shop and some of their original sketches and designs were shown in the Art Department especially for the occasion.
Some iconic sets were also given a makeover as the Great Hall’s long tables were lined with props from Hogwarts feasts and the Gryffindor common room was dressed as it was for Quidditch victory scenes in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.