Poof! The Harry Potter movies are set to disappear from HBO Max in August — less than three months after they first became available on the new streaming service.
HBO Max parent company WarnerMedia announced on Monday that all eight Harry Potter films — 2001’s Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, 2002’s Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, 2004’s Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, 2005’s Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, 2007’s Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, 2009’s Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, 2010’s Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1 and 2011’s Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2 — will leave HBO Max on Tuesday, Aug. 25.
The billion-dollar film franchise starring Daniel Radcliffe as the titular boy wizard was a last-minute addition to HBO Max’s launch slate when the streaming service went live on May 27. Warner Bros. Pictures originally distributed the films in theaters, but NBCUniversal bought the rights to the franchise in 2016, reportedly forcing WarnerMedia to pay big bucks to feature the movies on its new streamer. (For all of three months, as it turns out.)
For the record: Though Harry Potter book author J.K. Rowling has been mired in controversy lately over her statements about transgender people, our sister site Variety reports that the removal of the movies from HBO Max is due to “standard licensing terms” and has nothing to do with the controversy.