Harry Potter Parking Lot
Watch a Charming Sequel to "Heavy Metal Parking Lot" ... About Harry Potter Fans
Brow Beat
Slate's Culture Blog
July 12 2011 4:47 PM

Harry Potter Parking Lot


In 1986, filmmakers Jeff Krulik and John Heyn brought a camera and some soundgear to the parking lot of a Judas Priest concert and hung out with a bunch of drunk, loud, excitable young fans. The resulting 16-minute documentary, "Heavy Metal Parking Lot," went viral back in the VHS days, as fans traded copies of copies of copies of the film and turned it into a cult classic. (You can now purchase it on a very respectable-looking special edition DVD.)

Thirteen years after he made "Heavy Metal Parking Lot," Krulik decided to turn his camera on another group of young fans—less drunk than the first cohort, perhaps, but no less loud or excitable. As the world gets ready for the release of the final Harry Potter film later this week, Krulik's short film offers a sweet, funny look back at the early days of Pottermania. (I especially dig the girl with the baguette.)


Krulik writes:

I produced this in 1999 when J.K. Rowling was doing a book tour for the third book (I think). The first movie had not even come out yet, the fuss was all about the books. I just took my camera up the street to Politics and Prose. It was more of a Harry Potter Sidewalk than a Parking Lot, but it was another attempt to further expand our 'franchise.' I knew the Harry Potter phenomenon was big, but had no clue that it would become enormous. I'm glad that I was on the cusp of something. Those kids in the video must be about to graduate from college now.

Equally mindblowing: This time-lapse slideshow of Neville Longbottom (a.k.a. actor Matthew Lewis) aging 10 years and getting kind of ... hot?


Nina Shen Rastogi is a writer and editor, and is also the vice president for content at Figment.