As the Harry Potter series draws to a close this month with the release of Deathly Hallows: Part 2 on July 15, we're taking a look back at the previous seven movies in the series to chart the rise of J.K. Rowling's boy wizard.
It all began with British producer David Heyman and Warner Bros, both eager to find a children's book to spin into a hit movie franchise, stumping up a cool £1 million ($1.6 million) to bag the rights to Rowling's first four Harry Potter novels in 1999. By the end of that year, Philosopher's Stone, Chamber of Secrets and Prisoner of Azkaban had already cemented Harry as a literary phenomenon, so Hollywood was rubbing its hands in anticipation of translating that success to the big screen.
Directors such as Terry Gilliam (allegedly a Rowling favourite), Jonathan Demme and Steven Spielberg were all initially scouted out for the director's gig - in fact, Spielberg pitched his take on Potter as an animated movie with Haley Joel Osment providing the voice of Harry.
Eventually, Chris Columbus scored the top job on the strength of his work on The Goonies and Home Alone and set to work casting the film. With Rowling insisting that the actors be largely British and the film retain the UK setting, the likes of Richard Harris, Robbie Coltrane and Alan Rickman assembled to fill the key roles of Albus Dumbledore, Hagrid and Severus Snape.
For Harry Potter, Hermione Granger and Ron Weasley, a wide net was cast to find three unknown Brits to fill the sough-after roles. Daniel Radcliffe had previously starred in a David Copperfield TV movie and as Geoffrey Rush's son in The Tailor of Panama before landing the titular role, Emma Watson leapt from school productions to Hermione and Rupert Grint won the part of Ron after answering a casting call on Newsround.
Filming took place from October 2000 to April 2001 and Philosopher's Stone held its world premiere on November 4, 2001 at London's Leicester Square. A $90 million (£56.1 million) opening weekend in the US, besting the box office record set by Jurassic Park sequel The Lost World, made the movie a hit and sent the cast and crew into sequel Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets in high spirits.
Philosopher's Stone played a crucial part in the series, setting the template and establishing the world of Hogwarts for films to come. Rowling's imaginative storytelling sprung to life on-screen as Harry hitched a ride on the Hogwarts Express at King's Cross platform 9 ¾, forged an unbreakable friendship with Ron and Hermione and faced Lord Voldemort for the first time as the dark wizard took possession of Professor Quirrell.
> Harry Potter complete coverage
Move through our Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone gallery below: