The Wizarding World's Ollivanders may be coming to a mall near you

July 18, 2017, 11:38 AM · If you've been wanting to go to Ollivander's to find a wand, you might not have to book a trip to Universal Orlando or Universal Studios Hollywood to do it. The iconic wand shop from The Wizarding World of Harry Potter might be on its way to a mall nearer you.

Warner Bros. Consumer Products, which licenses Potter to the Universal theme parks, announced today that it has partnered with GES, producers of "Harry Potter: The Exhibition," to create "Christmas in the Wizarding World," a themed shopping experience that will launch this fall in "major shopping destinations."

"This fully themed holiday retail experience will be reminiscent of the setting and atmosphere of a wintry Hogsmeade village, complete with a wand shop, ornate window displays and interactive elements that are sure to be a hit with Harry Potter fans," Warner Bros. said in a press release.

In addition to an Ollivander's shop, where "guests will be able to experience a holiday surprise with the help of the Wandkeeper," the experience will feature a digital background photo op, featuring a choice of backgrounds from the Potter films, animated shop windows, and a large selection of Potter-themed merchandise, including house sweaters, stuffed owls, jewelry, collectibles, and sweets.

Potter fans have been able to find merchandise outside the Universal parks at Warner Bros.' studio stores in Burbank, Calif. and Leavesden in the United Kingdom, so this won't be the first time that Potter-themed shopping has moved outside the Universal parks. Warner Bros. has not announced the specific locations for the Christmas in the Wizarding World experience, promising that announcement "soon."

Replies (13)

July 18, 2017 at 11:45 AM · The Orlando natives that buy the most popular items from the parks and scalp them on eBay will not be happy.
July 18, 2017 at 12:19 PM · I wonder if the "interactive elements" means they will be selling the same more-expensive IR wands sold at Universal or if they will be the cheaper, more authentic looking models.

Sounds like a Build-a-Bear for Potter-philes. I'm not sure how popular this would be outside of super high-traffic malls (Paramus, NJ, King of Prussia, PA, Tysons Corner, VA, Mall of America, and the like), where they wouldn't be able to generate enough revenue through limited sales to warrant the free show to thousands of passers-by.

With the Fantastic Beasts sequel not due out until fall 2018, seems like WB is caught in between. They should have done this last year or waited until next year to couple these store launches with the movie releases.

July 18, 2017 at 12:40 PM · Universal studios can not be happy about this.
July 18, 2017 at 2:21 PM · There's a HP shop in Kings Cross station that will already charge you an obscene amount of money for a photo with a cart stuck in a wall (Before the store moved in you used to be able to do it yourself for free).
July 18, 2017 at 2:29 PM · I can't imagine Harry Potter being so popular for big sales of the wands. This will definitely impact the unique presentation at Universal parks. It should come in time for Halloween rather than Christmas. Oh well. I'm not in the market for such things.
July 18, 2017 at 3:00 PM · The effect of this really depends upon how many locations install the exhibit. I cannot imagine that this would be cheap for a developer to install. At most, I think it might affect mail order/online sales, but I don't think that anyone would skip a trip to the parks for this, unless one is installed at The Grove or someplace in LA, which could cut into USH traffic from people just going to shop.
July 18, 2017 at 5:22 PM · People still go to malls?
July 18, 2017 at 5:57 PM · What @James Rao said...

Universal is probably not happy about this, but I can't see this as a big substitute for going to the theme parks, so I'm not sure there's a big downside.

At most you end up with some people maybe not buying the merchandise when there, but you go to the theme park for the immersive aspect of the IP.

i.e. It's not like Disney stores or experiences elsewhere in the US harm WDW or DL. You go to the theme park for the entire experience, being able to buy a tiny part of the experience (the merchandise) elsewhere doesn't really affect that.

July 19, 2017 at 3:04 AM · This is a great idea for malls that want to continue in business. I think it will be in many major malls. The small malls are the ones that will die. Major malls already know that dining and entertainment are their future and stores like this are a combination of entertainment and shopping, the perfect type of stores for malls like the new enlarged Staten Island Mall.
July 19, 2017 at 5:02 AM · I have a feeling this is only a seasonal store, aka temporary. I do not think Universal is sweating.
July 19, 2017 at 6:23 AM · Well if my memory serves me correctly - Didn't Disney have stores in malls and downtown shopping area in the US and many have since closed..

If you are 'In the Moment' you will buy trinkets and Souvenirs, but take that moment away and how much stuff will you sell.

Plus you can go online to find HP items...Universal has online store plus

Yikes - this will fail...

July 19, 2017 at 6:55 AM · Robert, was there anything specific in the press release or elsewhere that made you think this was a mall thing. I agree with Russell as far as what kinds of malls this could go to, but I actually see this more of a standalone "pop-up store" like in Times Square, the Vegas Strip, near the Palace Theatre London, and similar areas across Asia, Europe, and N America.
July 25, 2017 at 7:35 AM · This is only a seasonal, temporary store experience. There are no plans that I'm aware of to create a Harry Potter chain of stores.

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