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HARRY POTTER AND THE GOBLET OF FIRE

Year Four: Champions & Challenges
The most exhilarating and difficult times of his life await Harry Potter as he returns to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry for his fourth year of study in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, the fourth film adaptation of J.K. Rowling's immensely popular Harry Potter novel series.

Not only must Harry compete in a dangerous international tournament that pits him against his older and more experienced peers, but he will also be forced to confront his nemesis, the evil Lord Voldemort, who is determined to return to power – and finish Harry off once and for all. This harrowing news pales only in comparison to Harry's genuine anxiety over having to find a date for Hogwarts' Yule Ball.

The school year will also bring significant changes for Harry's best friends Ron and Hermione, who may finally acknowledge a change in their feelings for each other. Meanwhile, as the teens deal with the onset of hormonal angst, romance blossoms among the adults too – when sparks fly between Harry's trusted advisor Hagrid and Madame Maxime, the statuesque headmistress of the Beauxbatons Academy.

"This is one of the most challenging of all the films,” notes David Heyman, producer of the Harry Potter film series. "We needed someone who could direct a dark and suspenseful thriller, drive exhilarating action sequences and yet at the same time, be intuitive and sensitive to the comic angst of being a teenager. You've only got to look at films as diverse as Dance with a Stranger, Donnie Brasco and Four Weddings and a Funeral to appreciate that there are very few directors as skilled and multi-talented as Mike Newell.”

"For me, the essence of this story is a thriller,” Newell says. "There are wonderful set pieces, from the excitement of the Triwizard Tournament to the humor and heartbreak of the Yule Ball, but driving the story is this marvelous thriller in which something truly evil is out to get Harry – and only he has the power to do something about it.”

Portending the danger to come, as the story begins, Harry is beset by an eerie nightmare that leaves his notorious lightning bolt scar searing with pain. His pain turns to bone-chilling dread at the Quidditch World Cup, where Lord Voldemort's fearsome followers, the Death Eaters, scorch the night sky with the wicked wizard's Dark Mark, publicly heralding their leader for the first time since his disappearance thirteen years ago Not even Hogwarts' venerable Headmaster Dumbledore is certain what to make of these mysterious events. In an effort to establish ties between the three largest European schools of wizardry, Dumbledore announces that Hogwarts will host the Triwizard Tournament, a thrilling competition that welcomes students and teachers from two other European wizarding schools to live and study at Hogwarts for the school year

"Dumbledore is trying to prepare the wizarding world for the dark times ahead,” Heyman observes. "His gesture also underscores a theme of the film, which is learning to get along with people who are different from you. If they're good, it doesn't matter where they're from.”

Due to the life-threatening risks inherent in the Triwizard competition, Barty Crouch, the head of the Department of International Magical Cooperation, decrees that no student under the age of 17 may enter – precluding 14 year old Harry and his friends from participating. But when the magical Goblet of Fire selects one champion from each of the three wizarding schools to compete in the Tournament, it stuns everyone by naming a fourth: Harry Potter

Despite Harry's protests, the Goblet's decision is binding, and he has no choice but to compete in the grueling Tournament against older students with far superior wizarding skills

"What I really like about Harry is that he's not a hero in the classic sense, a brave all-conquering Superman,” says Daniel Radcliffe, who watched thrill

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