The countdown to Half-Blood Prince is on!

Folks both magical and muggle alike are excited for July 15th, 2009 when the sixth (and most pivotal installment to date) of the Harry Potter saga arrives in theatres. Already, tickets have been sold out in advance for midnight showings of the eagerly awaited film on its release date. Anticipate a horde of costumed movie-goers to line the building in a queue during the witching hour of the 15th!

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince showcases J.K. Rowling’s “Potterverse” translated from her novels to the big screen during rather dark times. With Lord Voldemort risen again and gathered his Death Eaters, not to mention the increasingly dark turn of the Ministry of Magic, the students of Hogwarts School of Wizarding find themselves placed in increasingly dangerous situations. Harry Potter, himself, has been affected thanks to the death of his beloved godfather and protector, Sirius Black, at the hands of Black’s own cousin, Bellatrix Lestrange. Factor in that Harry’s kindly mentor, Hogwart’s headmaster, Albus Dumbledore has shown up with a peculiarly blackened and withered hand and isn’t quite his normally cheery self, and these are dark times indeed for Harry and his friends.

Among some of the new characters fans will get to see on celluloid are Potions Master, Horace Slughorn (played by acclaimed actor Jim Broadbent), taking over for Snape, who has now assumed the position of Professor of Defense Against the Dark Arts. Other new characters include young Voldemort as his persona of Tom Riddle, the troubled yet evil young man Dumbledore attempts to take under his wing, and Riddle’s dysfunctional dark wizard family, the Gaunts. Rounding out the cast (and just in time for all of the hype of werewolves being the new vampires… Thanks “Twilight: New Moon”!) is Fenrir Greyback, a very ornery werewolf who lives for the hunt and kill.

In preparation for the new film, Harry Potter costumes are already becoming a popular seller. Represent your house of choice with colorful scarves to attend a midnight showing, or even catching a matinee! Or, get really crazy and bust out the Muggle equivalent of Polyjuice Potion and whip up your own costume to dress as some of your favorite characters! Check out numerous How To costume ideas for some of the darker characters who haven’t gotten their costume due just yet and dress as Severus Snape the “is he or isn’t he” anti-hero of the tale, Death Eater couple Lucius Malfoy and his wife Narcissa.

Stay tuned for a review of the new Harry Potter film here on Costumzee later in the week! Long live Albus Dumbledore!

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