Animal Actors in Action on the Harry Potter Sets

29 Jan 2014 - By TW Staff

(Above: Head Animal Trainer Julie Tottman with a cat that played Crookshanks in the Harry Potter films.)

Next month, visitors to Warner Bros. Studio Tour London have the chance to see live training demonstrations with the beloved animal actors from the the Harry Potter film series.

Returning for its second year, Animal Actors Week runs February 14-24, and features some of the 250+ animals that were used throughout all eight films.

Visitors will also learn how Head Animal Trainer Julie Tottman helped the animals "act" their parts through special tricks and equipment used on set.

Tickets must be purchased in advance, so buy them now if you plan to be in the London area next month. In the meantime, enjoy a slideshow of the animals and their trainers below.

And before you go, catch up on your animal actor trivia:

  • Did you know three different dog breeds were initially considered to play Fang before the choice of Neapolitan Mastiff was made?
  • Crackerjack, one of the cats that played Crookshanks, became very good friends with one of the rats that played Scabbers. In fact, he would often chase the rat around the sets even when the cameras weren’t rolling.
  • Initial groundwork for animal training takes about three to five weeks. When a script first arrived, the Animal Department would begin fundamental training, develop questions and ideas about how the scenes would be shot and then work with the director to finalize training plans.

Photos courtesy of Warner Bros.