Twenty years of Harry Potter marked with year-long campaign

Twenty years of Harry Potter marked with year-long campaign

Bloomsbury is set to celebrate 20 years of Harry Potter with a year-long campaign, including special anniversary publishing and an exhibition at the British Library.

Monday 26th June 2017 will mark the 20th anniversary of the publication of Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone by Bloomsbury. From an idea born on a train journey to its creation in a small cafe in Edinburgh, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone is the book that started a "global phenomenon", starting with an initial hardback print run of just 500 copies, which has now gone on to sell over 450m units worldwide in 79 different languages, according to the publisher.

To mark the "magical" anniversary, Bloomsbury will publish four ‘Hogwarts House Editions’ of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone: Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw and Slytherin. Each edition will feature the house shield illustrated on the jacket, bespoke extra content and "stunning" sprayed edges in house colours.

Bloomsbury will also partner with The British Library to curate and launch a new exhibition about the magic of Harry Potter, set to open on 20th October 2017. This will be the first British Library exhibition inspired by a single series of books by a living author. From medieval descriptions of dragons and griffins, to the origins of the Philosopher’s Stone, the exhibition will take readers on a "spellbinding journey to the heart of the Harry Potter stories". The collection will showcase the history of magic across the world, using an "extraordinary" range of wizarding books, manuscripts and objects, and combine "fascinating" treasures from the British Library’s collections  with previously-unseen material from the Bloomsbury and J K Rowling archives.

Jamie Andrews, head of culture and learning at the British Library, said: "The British Library is delighted to be working with Bloomsbury and with J K Rowling to mark the twentieth anniversary of Harry Potter, and to inspire fans with the magic of our own British Library collections."

Rebecca McNally, publishing director and editor-in-chief of Bloomsbury Children’s Books, said: "The British Library is a magical place for book lovers. They are the perfect partners for a once-in-a-lifetime exhibition exploring a once-in-a-lifetime cultural phenomenon, a thrilling celebration of magic and imagination with Harry Potter at its heart."

More news on the Bloomsbury's plans to mark this "milestone moment" will be announced later in the year.

Earlier today the publisher revealed it had signed a sublicense to publish several tie-in titles for the upcoming film "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" and J K Rowling’s Wizarding World.