- Harry Potter Fan Zone
name = Harry Potter Fan Zone
caption = For Wizards, Witches and Muggles Alike
url = http://www.harrypotterfanzone.com
Harry PotterFan Site
owner = Andy McCray
author = Andy McCray
launch date = Summer 2003
current status =
revenue = Harry Potter Fan Zone, or HPFZ as it is often referred to by fans, is an unofficial
Harry Potter fansitecreated in 2003 by Australian teenager Andy McCray. To date, the website is the largest Harry Potter fan site in the Southern Hemisphere, and is regarded as one of the top Potter fan sites in the world. According to The Sydney Morning Herald, as of 2007, "Harry Potter Fan Zone" was "the only official Australian website dedicated to the Harry Potter book and film phenomenon" [http://www.smh.com.au/news/film/student-hit-on-hogwart-heaven/2007/06/29/1182624164896.html Student hit on Hogwart heaven - Film - Entertainment - smh.com.au ] ] , although it is neither official nor the only Australian Harry Potter fansite. Harry Potter Fan Zone is well respected in the online community, perhaps best known for its up-to-date news and commitment to its diverse fan base. The site has grown from a solo hobby to a dedicated staff of around twenty volunteers, who help to maintain various aspects of the site. Although the site was founded in Canberra, Australia, it is updated daily by staff members situated mostly in the United States.
Although Harry Potter Fan Zone's main focus is as a "general" Harry Potter fan site, it is also known for covering events that attract media coverage. The site has covered events in the USA, UK and Australia, including book releases, movie releases, premieres and fan gatherings. In October 2005, Harry Potter Fan Zone was invited to be on the Red Carpet at the US premiere of "
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire", which was held at the Ziegfeld Theatrein New York City. Red Carpet arrivals were covered by the website's Australian founder and owner, Andy, and forums founder, Zach. Andy was the only Australian press to be invited to cover the event. Subsequently, they were the first fan site to release a professionally-edited [http://www.harrypotterfanzone.com/fusion/fullnews.php?id=531 Red Carpet video] , which included interviews with many of the cast members and fans.
Harry Potter Fan Zone was also the only site to be allowed a photographer in the photographer's pit, to which they responded with an image gallery of stars and fans. The site was also invited to be part of a press conference with a number of stars from the film. Subsequently, the premiere event has led to nation-wide media opportunities in both newspaper and television for the team. In 2006, the site interviewed James Walters [http://www.harrypotterfanzone.com/?ID=jameswaltersinterview] , the actor who played Young Sirius Black in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, providing an entertaining scoop from the film set. The site have also provided fans with first glimpses of
James Walters, Susie Shinner, Robbie Jarvisand other movie cast members.
The content of the website has been selected for preservation in the
Pandora Archiveby the National Library of Australia. [ [http://nla.gov.au/anbd.bib-an41406334 Libraries Australia - Harry Potter Fan Zone [electronic resource / [founder and publisher Andy McCray ] ] [ [http://pandora.nla.gov.au/tep/67663 Pandora Archive - Preserving and Accessing Networked DOcumentary Resources of Australia ] ]
Besides the purely static content available, the site provides an active forum. The forums (titled HPFZ Forums) are hosted on a separate domain, and are home to over 6300 members. They are constantly active with Harry Potter related debates, theories and discussion. The forums are also home to an annual
Yule Ball, a popular role-playingevent which gathers fans from across the globe to participate 72 hours of "well-mannered frivolity". A separate staff team runs the forums, however the site's main webmaster, Andy, also helps with the management and administration side of the forums.
Harry Potter Gatherings
In 2004, the site put together a [http://www.waycoolsites.com/hpfantrips coverage website] for [http://www.hpfantrips.com HP Fan Trips] , a popular Harry Potter themed tour around the United Kingdom. This included written reports, a gallery and a number of videos. The site is currently working on coverage for the 2005 trip. In July 2005, Harry Potter Fan Zone worked with [http://www.wizardingworld.com Wizarding World Press] to help host Spellbound! 2005, a daylong event to celebrate the release of "
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" in Mt. Prospect, Illinois. They also helped provide coverage.
Harry Potter Fan Zone also provided media coverage for the 2006 fan trip, which took place in July.
Fan Site Award
On 10 May 2007, J.K. Rowling awarded Harry Potter Fan Zone a "Fan Site Award". [ [http://www.ctv.ca/servlet/ArticleNews/story/CTVNews/20070710/harry_potter_trivia_070709/20070710/ CTV.ca | Harry Potter Trivia: 10 Things to Know about J.K ] ] On J.K. Rowling's official site, she stated why she had given HPFZ the award. The text reads;
"How could I not love a fansite whose contributors include people named Thaddeus and Aunna? This is a great Australian site with an impressively young staff who have produced some really insightful editorials; I wish I could highlight a couple of them, but that would be waaaay too revealing. If you head over to FAQs, however, you will see some of the open letter questions answered (at long last, yes, I know... but I had to finish "Deathly Hallows" first). So congratulations and thanks, Andy, to you and all your talented colleagues" [ [http://www.jkrowling.com/textonly/en/fansite_view.cfm?id=19 J.K.Rowling Official Site ] ]
Harry Potter Fan Zone's webmaster, Andy McCray, responded by placing a news post on the site in which he conveyed his feelings and gratitude towards J.K. Rowling for giving his site the award. The news post stated;
I am both proud and overjoyed to find out today that Jo Rowling has awarded Harry Potter Fan Zone a fan site award on her official website. From the bottom of my heart, thank you Jo – this means the world to all of us here at HPFZ.
As a result, the site's popularity soared, reaching a maximum of 800 "Muggles" online at one point.
* [http://www.harrypotterfanzone.com Harry Potter Fan Zone]
* [http://www.hpfzforums.com HPFZ Forums]
* [http://www.kentucky.com/mld/kentucky/entertainment/movies/13188423.htm Harry Potter on the 'net] - Lexington Herald-Leader, November 18, 2005
* [http://blogs.chicagotribune.com/news_columnists_ezorn/2006/01/at_last_i_can_j.html Article in Chicago Tribune] - Chicago Tribune, January 23, 2006
*cite news | first=Jenna | last=Price | author= | url= http://canberra.yourguide.com.au/detail.asp?class=lifestyle%20news&subclass=relax&story_id=554052&category=books
title=Web hit: Harry Potter and the Canberra Kid | work= | publisher=Canberra Times | pages= | page= | date=2007-02-03 | accessdate=2007-02-10
* [http://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/story?id=2931350&page=1&CMP=OTC-RSSFeeds0312 Harry 'Harry Potter' Sneak Peek Has Fans Salivating - Online Fan Sites Are Buzzing After Surprise Showing of New 'Harry Potter' Film in Chicago] - ABC News, March 7, 2007
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