In case you've been living in a cave for the past week, Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling outed one of her most beloved characters last week at an event at Carnegie Hall.
To the surprise and applause of many of her fans, she announced to a packed house that Albus Dumbledore -- the former head of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry -- is gay.
Did anyone else see this coming?
Now, I'm probably one of the biggest Harry Potter fans out there. I've read all the books at least twice (I'm in the process of my second time with #7 right now) and I don't think Dumbledore's sexuality ever came into question for me. Perhaps, Voldemort's sexuality, but not Dumbledore.
I had always thought that secretly Albus had lost a love from long ago and that's why he had always told Harry about how important it is to love. I guess in a way I was right. I just never thought that it would have been with Gellert Grindelwald -- the wizard who was kicked out of Durmstrang for his use of underage Dark Arts.
Since I've started reading "Deathly Hallows" again I have noticed a few tidbits that Jo has thrown in there to hint at this long-lost love affair that took place when the two talented wizards were 17. But beyond that I think mostly that she has just announced that she is working on a prequel that will focus on the life and lies of Albus Dumbledore (yes, it will probably be named just like Rita Skeeter's seething biography from Book 7).
In other HP news, filming has begun for "Half-Blood Prince." If you search online you can see pictures of the outside facades of the house that will be used for Horace Slughorn's home in the beginning of the film. Reports from the set have announced that this week, Dan Radcliffe and Ralph Fiennes are filming a few of their scenes.
Also, a few new actors have been linked to Film 6. Most notably, (and this has not been confirmed by the studios or the actors themselves) Naomi Watts's name has surfaced as a fore-runner to play Narcissa Malfoy (wife of Lucius - played by Jason Isaacs, sister of Bellatrix Lestrange -- played by Helena Bonham Carter, and mother of Draco Malfoy -- played by Tom Felton, who has to be like 30).
Jim Broadbent has been named as the actor portraying Horace Slughorn. Most recently he was in "Hot Fuzz".
Also being linked to the film, are Bill Nighy. I have heard that he could play either Fenrir Greyback (the werewolf known to have a blood thirst for children and Weasleys) or as the new Minister of Magic, Rufus Scrimgeour. There have also been reports that "Pirates of the Caribbean" and BBC star Jack Davenport (Admiral Norrington) has been offered an unspecified role.
It seems that the only Brits who haven't signed on to the Harry Potter series are Judi Dench, Patrick Stewart, Orlando Bloom, Geoffrey Rush, and Joseph Fiennes...
Err...Actually, Joseph Fiennes (Voldy's younger brother who's famous for the Oscar-worthy "Shakespeare in Love") has also been linked to an unnamed role.
I guess with all those death eaters roles to fill, they need to keep it in the family. My hope is that Johnny Depp will take the role as Sirius Black's brother and Voldemort follow, Regulus A. Black.