Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (2002)

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Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets is a 2002 British-American fantasy film directed by Chris Columbus and distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures.[2] It is based on the novel of the same name by J. K. Rowling. The film is a sequel to the 2001 film Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone and the second instalment in the Harry Potter film series. It was written by Steve Kloves and produced by David Heyman. Its story follows Harry Potter's second year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry as the Heir of Salazar Slytherin opens the Chamber of Secrets, unleashing a monster that petrifies the school's denizens. The film stars Daniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter, with Rupert Grint as Ron Weasley, and Emma Watson as Hermione Granger. The film is also the last film to feature Richard Harris as Professor Albus Dumbledore, due to his death that same year.

The film was released in theatres in the United Kingdom and the United States on 15 November 2002. It became a critical and commercial success, grossing $879 million at the box office worldwide. It was the second highest grossing film of 2002 behind The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers. It was nominated for many awards including the BAFTA Award for Best Production Design, Best Sound, and Best Special Visual Effects. It was followed by six sequels, beginning with Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban in 2004 and ending with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2 in 2011, nearly ten years after the first film's release.


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Harry Potter spends the summer with The Dursleys without receiving letters from his Hogwarts friends. In his room, Harry meets Dobby, a house-elf, who warns Harry bad things will happen if he returns to Hogwarts, and reveals he intercepted his friends' letters, and destroys a cake. The Dursleys lock Harry up, but Ron, Fred and George Weasleyrescue him in their father's flying car, a Ford Anglia.

While purchasing school supplies, Harry and the Weasley family encounter Rubeus Hagrid and Hermione Granger, and they attend a book-signing by celebrity wizard Gilderoy Lockhart, who announces he will be the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher. Harry also encounters Draco Malfoy and his father Lucius, who slips a book in Ginny Weasley's belongings. When Harry and Ron are blocked from entering Platform Nine and Three-Quarters (later revealed to be Dobby's doing), they fly to Hogwarts in the Ford Anglia, crashing into the Whomping Willow upon arrival. Ron's wand is damaged, and the car ejects them before driving off. Both boys narrowly avoid expulsion when Professor McGonagall gives them detention.

While serving detention with Lockhart, Harry hears strange voices and later finds caretaker Argus Filch's cat, Mrs. Norris, petrified, along with a message written in blood announcing the "Chamber of Secrets has been opened". McGonagall explains that one of Hogwarts' founders, Salazar Slytherin, supposedly constructed a secret Chamber and placed a monster that only his Heir can control inside it, to purge the school of impure-blooded wizards and witches. More attacks occur over the course of the year. Harry and Ron suspect Malfoy is the Heir, so Hermione suggests they question him while disguised using polyjuice potion. They utilize a disused bathroom haunted by a ghost, Moaning Myrtle, as their makeshift laboratory to brew the potion.

When Harry communicates with a snake (something Salazar Slytherin could do), the school believes he is the Heir. On Christmas Day, Harry and Ron learn that Malfoy is not the Heir, but he mentions that a girl died when the Chamber was last opened fifty years ago. Harry finds an enchanted diary, owned by a former student named Tom Marvolo Riddle, which shows him a flashback to fifty years before, where Riddle accused Hagrid, then a student, of opening the Chamber. When the diary disappears and Hermione is petrified, Harry and Ron question Hagrid. Professor Dumbledore, Cornelius Fudge, and Lucius Malfoy come to take Hagrid to Azkaban, but he discreetly tells the boys to "follow the spiders". Lucius has Dumbledore suspended. In the Forbidden Forest, Harry and Ron find Hagrid's giant pet spider Aragog, who reveals Hagrid's innocence and that the dead girl was found in a bathroom. Aragog then sets his colony of Acromantula on the boys, but the now-wild Ford Anglia saves them.

A book page in Hermione's hand identifies the monster as a basilisk, a giant serpent that instantly kills those that make direct eye contact with it; the petrified victims only saw it indirectly. The school staff learn that Ginny was taken into the Chamber, and convince Lockhart to save her. Harry and Ron find Lockhart, exposed as a fraud, planning to flee; knowing Myrtle was the girl the Basilisk killed, they take him to her bathroom and find the Chamber's entrance. Once inside, Lockhart uses Ron's damaged wand against them, but it backfires, wiping his memory, and causes a cave-in.

Harry enters the Chamber alone and finds Ginny unconscious, guarded by Tom Riddle. Riddle reveals that he used the diary to manipulate Ginny and reopen the Chamber. When Riddle creates the anagram for his future new identity, "I am Lord Voldemort" from his full name, Harry realises that Riddle himself is Slytherin's heir and Voldemort was only a pseudonym. After Harry expresses support for Dumbledore, Dumbledore's Fawkes flies in with the Sorting Hat, and Riddle summons the Basilisk. Fawkes blinds the Basilisk, and the Sorting Hat eventually produces a sword with which Harry battles and slays the Basilisk, but he is poisoned by its fangs.

Harry defeats Riddle and revives Ginny by stabbing the diary with a basilisk fang. Fawkes's tears heal him, and he returns to Hogwarts with his friends and a baffled Lockhart. Dumbledore, reinstated as headmaster, praises them and orders for Hagrid's release. Dumbledore shows Harry the sword he wielded was Godric Gryffindor's own sword, and says he is different from Voldemort, because he chose Gryffindor House instead of Slytherin House. Harry accuses Lucius, Dobby's master, of putting the diary in Ginny's cauldron and tricks him into freeing Dobby. The Basilisk's victims are healed, Hermione reunites with Harry and Ron, and Hagrid returns. In a post-credits scene, Lockhart has published a new autobiography, "Who Am I?".[3]

Cast[edit]Further information: List of Harry Potter films cast membersDaniel Radcliffe as Harry Potter, a 12-year-old British wizard famous for surviving his parents' murder at the hands of the evil wizard Lord Voldemort as an infant, who now enters his second year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.
Rupert Grint as Ron Weasley, Harry's best male friend at Hogwarts and a younger member of the Weasley wizarding family.
Emma Watson as Hermione Granger, Harry's precocious Muggle-born best friend.
David Bradley as Argus Filch, the caretaker of Hogwarts.
Kenneth Branagh as Gilderoy Lockhart, a celebrity author and the new Defence Against the Dark Arts teacher at Hogwarts. Hugh Grant is said to have been the first choice for the role but due to reported scheduling conflicts he was unable to play the character.[4] On 25 October 2001, Branagh was selected as Grant's replacement.[5]
John Cleese as Nearly Headless Nick, the ghost patron of Gryffindor House.
Robbie Coltrane as Rubeus Hagrid, the half-giant gamekeeper at Hogwarts. Martin Bayfield portrays a young Hagrid.
Christian Coulson as Tom Marvolo Riddle, a former Hogwarts student in Slytherin House who is revealed to be Voldemort's birth name and is Salazar Slytherin's last remaining descendant.
Warwick Davis as Filius Flitwick, the Charms teacher at Hogwarts and head of Ravenclaw.
Julian Glover as Aragog, Hagrid's giant pet spider
Richard Griffiths as Vernon Dursley, Harry's abusive Muggle (non-magical) uncle, who despises wizards and now works as a drill company director.
Richard Harris as Albus Dumbledore, Headmaster of Hogwarts and one of the greatest wizards of the age. Harris died shortly before the film was released.
Jason Isaacs as Lucius Malfoy, a former Hogwarts pupil of Slytherin House now working as a school governor at Hogwarts and is the father of Draco Malfoy.
Miriam Margolyes as Professor Sprout, the Herbology teacher.
Alan Rickman as Severus Snape, the Potions teacher at Hogwarts and head of Slytherin.
Fiona Shaw as Petunia Dursley, Harry's Muggle aunt.
Maggie Smith as Minerva McGonagall, the Transfiguration teacher at Hogwarts and head of Gryffindor.
Julie Walters as Molly Weasley, the Weasley matriarch and a mother figure to Harry.

Toby Jones voices Dobby, a house elf who warns Harry not to return to Hogwarts; Gemma Jones portrays Madam Pomfrey, the nurse of the Hospital Wing. Robert Hardy portrays Cornelius Fudge, the Minister for Magic. Mark Williams appears as Ron's father Arthur Weasley, who works with the Ministry of Magic; James and Oliver Phelps appear as Fred and George Weasley, Ron's older twin brothers; Bonnie Wright portrays Ginny Weasley, Ron's younger sister; Chris Rankin portrays Percy Weasley, Ron's older Prefect brother. Tom Felton portrays Draco Malfoy, the trio's nemesis, Sean Biggerstaff portrays Oliver Wood, captain of the Gryffindor Quidditchteam, Matthew Lewis, Devon Murray, Alfred Enoch and Hugh Mitchell portray Neville Longbottom, Seamus Finnigan, Dean Thomas and Colin Creevey, various students of the Gryffindor House, respectively. Harry Melling portrays Dudley Dursley, Harry's Muggle cousin.
Directed by Chris Columbus
Produced by David Heyman
Screenplay by Steve Kloves
Based on Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
by J. K. Rowling

Daniel Radcliffe
Rupert Grint
Emma Watson
Kenneth Branagh
John Cleese
Robbie Coltrane
Warwick Davis
Richard Griffiths
Richard Harris
Jason Isaacs
Alan Rickman
Fiona Shaw
Maggie Smith
Julie Walters
David Bradley
Tom Felton
Sean Biggerstaff
Robert Hardy
Shirley Henderson
Gemma Jones
Miriam Margoyles
Mark Williams

Music by John Williams
Cinematography Roger Pratt
Edited by Peter Honess

Heyday Films
1492 Pictures
MIRACLE Productions GmbH & Co. KG

Distributed by Warner Bros. Pictures
Release date

3 November 2002(Odeon Leicester Square)
15 November 2002(United Kingdom & United States)

Running time
161 minutes[1]

United Kingdom
United States

Language English
Budget $100 million[2]
Box office $879 million