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HBO Max has been around for almost two full months, and it certainly boasts one of the larger libraries of content, particularly due to its access to numerous Warner Bros properties. This includes the Harry Potter movies… or rather, it will have, as all eight theatrical adventures starring The Boy Who Lived are leaving the streaming service at the end of next month.
As part of its August rollout announcement, HBO Max revealed that every Harry Potter movie, from The Sorcerer’s Stone to The Deathly Hallows Part 2, will be departing on August 25. That’s not to say they won’t ever be added back to HBO Max eventually, but towards the end of next month, they’re taking the Hogwarts Express off to parts unknown… or casting a Vanishing Spell. Whichever you prefer.
It’s worth noting that in the lead-up to HBO Max’s launch, the Harry Potter movies weren’t even expected to be available due to a prior licensing agreement. However, once HBO Max Day One came around, all these movies were on available to play, though now we know that they weren’t sticking around for the long haul. Case in point, Variety reports that the reason the eight Harry Potter movies are leaving HBO Max after just a few months is because of “standard licensing terms.”
With the Harry Potter movies exiting HBO Max before August concludes, that’ll leave Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald as the only Wizarding World tale that one can watch on this particular service. While Disney previously held the broadcast rights to the Harry Potter movies (hence all those marathons you’d catch on then-ABC Family/now-Freeform), in 2016, NBCUniversal acquired those rights, as well as the basic cable rights to the Fantastic Beasts movies, with this deal stretching from July 1, 2018 to April 2025.
As part of the digital portion of this agreement, it’s possible that the reason the Harry Potter movies are exiting HBO Max after such a short span of time is because NBCUniversal’s streaming service Peacock will be adding them to its own library. Assuming that’s the case, that begs the question of how HBO Max was able to gets its hands on these features for that limited amount of time. In any case, if the Harry Potter movies end up on Peacock in the near future, we’ll be sure to let you know.
Along with the Harry Potter movies, other titles that are leaving HBO Max at the end of August include John Wick Chapter 3: Parabellum, the Kill Bill movies, Good Will Hunting and Magic Mike. However, there are plenty of goodies being added to the service that month, including six Batman movies, Blade Runner: The Final Cut, Elf and Ocean’s Eleven. It’s also worth remembering that a bunch of DC movies are sticking around HBO Max longer than expected.
If you’re not already subscribed to HBO Max, a free seven-day trial is available. Keep checking back with CinemaBlend for all the biggest film and TV updates, and don’t forget to look through our recommendations for movies to watch on HBO Max that were recently added.
As for the future of the Wizarding World, Fantastic Beasts 3 is still scheduled to come out on November 12, 2021, although the threequel still hasn’t begun principal photography due to the ongoing health crisis.