J.K. Rowling Receives Death Threat After Expressing Opposition To Salman Rushdie Attacker

J.K. Rowling in old footage for the Harry Potter Reunion
(Image credit: Warner Bros.)

Author and Wizarding World creator J.K. Rowling has become a bit of a controversial figure in the past couple of years. In his own way, author Salman Rushdie fits that same label, albeit for very different reasons and with a different sect of people. After the stabbing attack that severely injured Rushdie, the co-writer of the 2022 movie release Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore expressed sympathy towards her fellow wordsmith while decrying his attacker. Apparently that action was enough to land J.K. Rowling a death threat of her own. 

It all took place on Twitter, as Rowling shared the threat posted under that message of concern. While also tagging the site’s support account to flag the action, the Harry Potter author also called upon Twitter's support account to take action against this alleged threat. Here’s J.K. Rowling’s message, complete with screen caps: 

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In the past, J.K. Rowling has seen backlash for both character choices in her Harry Potter books, as well as her stance on transgender people, which has seen responses from Daniel Radcliffe and other Potter cast members. While being hot button issues, it doesn’t seem like Rowling was issued death threats for those actions. Instead, it seems as though this social media statement was motivated solely by her support of Salman Rushdie. No one can concretely say that though, as the simply made threat didn’t elaborate on a motive. 

The attack on Salman Rushdie, which occurred Friday, August 12, left the author with several severe stab wounds. As shared by CNN, the motivations behind the stabbing are still unclear, but Rushdie is recovering well, after having been removed from a ventilator. It’s all very mysterious, though it’s a good thing that no actual deaths have occurred in either end of this upsetting story. Still, one could assume that J.K. Rowling's security presence will be beefed up for some time in the near future. 

Be it a controversy through unpopular statements or how an author/creator handles certain subject matters, death threats sadly aren’t a new phenomenon. Just recently Under the Banner of Heaven creator Dustin Lance Black was prepared for such threats, as the series pertaining to murder connected with Mormon extremists pushed back on the faith’s status quo. Even with those expectations set, it certainly doesn’t make it any easier when a threat is actually made. 

We’ll see how things pan out, as J.K. Rowling claims the police are investigating this threat. As such, it’ll take some time before we potentially learn anything further about this unfortunate incident. On the more business oriented side of things, Rowling recent meeting with Warner Bros. Discovery president David Zaslav might lead to more Harry Potter projects at the newly shaken-up WBD. Should there be any significant updates on any of these fronts, CinemaBlend will report them as they break.

Mike Reyes
Senior Movies Contributor

Mike Reyes is the Senior Movie Contributor at CinemaBlend, though that title’s more of a guideline really. Passionate about entertainment since grade school, the movies have always held a special place in his life, which explains his current occupation. Mike graduated from Drew University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science, but swore off of running for public office a long time ago. Mike's expertise ranges from James Bond to everything Alita, making for a brilliantly eclectic resume. He fights for the user.