illustrations by makani.deviantart.com // film stills: Warner Bros.
J.K. Rowling gave readers little snippets of insight into their time at Hogwarts, but we want more, and here’s why:
1. The Epic Bromance
James, Sirius, Remus, and Peter were clearly very close. After all, they had nicknames, became unregistered animagi, and created the Marauders Map. We know this had to be one epic bromance. Based on the characterizations Rowling provides, we can only imagine the dynamics of this fabulous foursome. How would Remus and Peter balance out the arrogant James and mischievous Sirius? What drew the other three to Peter, considering all we’ve heard about Peter is how he’s a nasty human being?
2. The Marauder’s Map
A full map of Hogwarts with all of its inhabitants and their current locations. Clearly the Marauders created one of the most powerful magical objects mentioned in the Harry Potter series. How did they make the Marauder’s Map? You can bet it involved ingredients that had to be stolen, a lot of research with books from the restricted section, and hard work. Since there’s no other map like it we know of, this shows incredible power from such young wizards. We know there’s more to this story, and we want to know. And that’s not even touching on all the trouble they could cause using the map once it was created…
Not even sure where to start with this one. When and how did Remus Lupin get bitten by a werewolf? Presumably, he escaped from a werewolf since it didn’t kill him. Remus is clearly full of self-loathing due to his condition. We can’t help but wonder if he’s killed or badly injured someone important to him. We know he was changing while attending Hogwarts, so how did that work before the Marauders started changing and helping him? Did Remus tell a teacher who helped him get out on the full moon? There’s so much meat in this story it could probably be a movie of its own. Which brings us to...
We would have to assume that books about how to become an animagus wouldn’t just be laying around the Hogwarts library for any student to check out. Animagi have to be registered and the consequences for not registering are supposedly quite harsh. In the Prisoner of Azkaban, Rowling states that becoming an animagi is a highly advanced form of Transfiguration and therefore can be very dangerous. Like the Marauder’s Map, this magic would have to be researched and practiced. Considering the fact that the Marauders were students, it’s very likely that something went wrong somewhere. That would be an interesting plot.
Anyone who’s read the books knows that Peter Pettigrew is a terrible person. He betrays James and Lily resulting in their death and the lightning bolt scar Harry sports. But why did he betray them? It’s easy to say he was jealous or that he wanted power or was afraid, but it’s likely more than that. Descriptions of the Marauders at a young age indicate Peter being an equal member of the group, which means that this sort of nastiness must have been deep. The Marauders would have noticed if young Peter was spineless and conniving the way he appears to be as an adult. It’s hard to believe that they would have respected him or even tolerated his presence, especially considering the way they treated Snape. So what went wrong?
6. Sirius Black Gets Blasted Off the Family Tree
Rowling says that Sirius’s name was literally blasted off of the Black family tree after cutting ties with his family. And all by the age of 16. This means he would have still been at Hogwarts. We have to wonder what happened when he started standing up to his family against their pureblood supremacist ideas. It had to be a rough time for him and a great dramatic topic for a movie. Not to mention the fact that his brother, Regulus, was in school as well.
We don’t know much about Regulus Black, but we do know he took a big step against Voldemort. Regulus Black (R.A.B.), stole Voldemort’s locket horcrux and replaced it with a fake one. In doing so, he lost his life. But in his younger years, Regulus was the perfect son every pureblooded parent wanted. We can assume that he didn’t get along well with Sirius considering his ideals, but it’s hard to believe Sirius didn’t have a soft spot for his little brother. Did he try to convince Regulus to leave the family with him? Did Regulus try to keep Sirius from leaving? From a family dynamic perspective, this one could get heart-wrenching.
8. Lily Loses Her Sister
It’s hard to believe that smart, upstanding Lily Evans and the awful Petunia Dursley came from the same household. The way Petunia talks about Harry’s parents in the books is filled with contempt, and yet she took in baby Harry. It’s proof to the readers that there is some humanity in her. The books tell us that Petunia and Lily were close friends before Lily went to Hogwarts. After Lily went to Hogwarts, Petunia even wrote a letter to Dumbledore asking if she could attend. When she was denied, we can assume she was hurt and disappointed. Did Lily write to her sister and try to keep in touch since they were so close? How did such a terrible falling out happen? There’s more to this story. We have a feeling that after hearing more, we might feel sorry for Petunia Dursley who married the shmuck and got left with Harry, the proof of her failure in life.
In Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows we learn that Snape lived in Lily’s neighborhood and helped her discover she was a witch. When her sister, Petunia, rejected Lily because of jealousy, Severus Snape became Lily’s best friend. This friendship continued well into their 5th year at Hogwarts, at which point Severus called Lily a mudblood. That was the year she realized that Snape had been too influenced by pureblood supremacist ideologies. We would love to see more of their friendship before everything went wrong. Snape pining over Lily, Lily being ignorant, and how the loss of the friendship affected them both. More depth would give us so much more insight into adult Severus Snape, who many doubted until the very end.
Young Lily Evans reminds us of Hermione, but perhaps with better social skills. She’s very smart and is known for doing well in school, so what attracts James Potter to her? Besides being able to do his homework of course. Perhaps he’s intrigued because she shows no interest in him, but that isn't enough for a lasting relationship. Plus, Lily was very close with Snape until her 5th year, and James was a pretty bad bully, as we have heard in the books. What made her change her mind about James? It had to have been something big as Lily is portrayed as a very upstanding person.
There’s quite a bit of speculation about how Narcissa and Lucius Malfoy ended up getting married. Some suggest an arranged marriage. This isn’t out of the realm of possibility considering how purebloods can seem similar to royal families and courtiers. Lucius was clearly an attractive young man, so he was likely admired by many young Slytherin ladies. Did he decide Narcissa was the best option, or did she have to convince him? Narcissa is a headstrong woman who went to Snape to save her son, Draco. We’re betting she'd have some redeeming qualities at a young age as well. While the pureblood families may resemble historical families of society, the Black women clearly don’t resemble soft-spoken and demure society ladies. We don’t hear much about their dynamics as a couple but they seem to provide a somewhat united front, so they clearly see each other as equals as adults. Please throw us a bone, J.K. Rowling!
12. Andromeda Black Marries a Mudblood
Another person blasted off the family tree was Andromeda Black, who married Ted Tonks, a muggle-born wizard. It’s widely accepted that Andromeda was the middle sister, between Bellatrix and Narcissa. She was noted as Sirius’s favorite cousin, so she probably had a good sense of humor. Seeing as she wasn’t disowned until the marriage to Ted Tonks, it’s possible she was very well-behaved in her youth. This sounds promising for those of us who love a forbidden romance. The tension leading up to the relationship between Ted and Andromeda would definitely satisfy any teenage girl’s need for a romantic theme in a movie.
13. Bellatrix Embraces Her Inner Demons
Any Harry Potter fan who knows Bellatrix knows she’s a little off her rocker. But she probably wasn’t always like that. While she was probably not a great person, Voldemort definitely brought out the worst in her. She has a darkness in her that could use some further exploration. She grew up with two sisters and went to Hogwarts just like everyone else. Bellatrix is known for being one of the most cruel Death Eaters, specializing in torturing people with the Cruciatus Curse. Alice and Frank Longbottom were tortured to the point of madness. What happened to send her over the edge, pushing her to embrace evil and become one of Voldemort’s most trusted Death Eaters?
This may be the biggest stretch in the article, but it’s a notion that I personally haven’t been able to put away. Bellatrix obviously worships Voldemort and is dedicated to him with every fiber of her being. It has been suggested on various fan websites that she could very likely be in love with him. However, she’s married to Rodolphus Lestrange who we know very little about. Despite being married and imprisoned together for the torture of the Longbottoms, we never see Rodolphus and Bellatrix interact. Kind of makes us question the love there. Was the marriage one of convenience? Is Rodolphus playing second fiddle to You-Know-Who? Only J.K. Rowling can tell us this one.
15. The Death Eaters Form
So how did Voldemort assemble so many pureblooded witches and wizards to his cause? Word-of-mouth likely played a huge part. From his recruiting, to training his Death Eaters, and planning his attacks, Voldemort’s initial rise must have developed slowly. It sounds similar to a revolution, being planned behind closed doors in the back rooms of bars. During this time, Voldemort would likely be creating his horcruxes as well. And who wouldn’t want to see Tom Riddle, who was a little off but not yet Voldemort, losing his soul piece by piece. Sure, it would be a dark movie, but one you would get sucked into.
The unanswered questions fans are left with just shows that J.K. Rowling created a superior world in her novels. I’d love to sit through another seven movies dealing with the build up to Harry's series. Is there something you still want to know about? Comment below!