Oh, the things you see on the street in New York. Yesterday an Improv group called Improv Everywhere posted a video their site that showcased a young man dressed as the iconic Harry Potter walking through the halls at Penn Station trying to find his way to Platform 9 ¾ and from there, Hogwarts.
The stunt is part of their Movies in Real Life series where they take popular scenes and characters straight off of the big screen and throw them into modern day society and watch as hilarity ensues.
First we find young Harry as he enters Penn Station. Surprisingly enough, young Harry fits in quite well with all the other weary travelers.
Then, as any responsible traveler who is having trouble finding his way would do, he asks the ticket counter for help.
Finally! Someone who gets it! A very tall young man with red hair approaches young Harry and introduces himself as Ron Weasley, Harry’s best friend. Unfortunately, young Harry seems a little thrown off by it.
At one point, he even stops by the Auntie Anne’s pretzel station and asks the woman behind the counter if pretzels are good for owls. Well…they are bread, after all. Eventually, she ended up giving him a free pretzel; however, he did insist on providing her with some of his wizard currency in exchange.
Another person who gets it! This nice lady tells young Harry that he should run really hard at the pillar and he would get there.
I honestly couldn’t help but laugh at this one. This looks just like the scene in the movie. Young Harry is down on the platform between 9 and 10 when he is stopped by the conductor and asked where he is going.
Finally, young Harry takes the woman’s advice and runs at the pillar between platforms 9 and 10 in an attempt to make it through to the train. Unfortunately, much like the scene in Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets where Harry and Ron get locked out of the platform and end up driving the flying Ford Anglia all the way to Hogwarts, young Harry was not meant to make it to school this year.
Finally, in a last ditch attempt to get to school, he approaches one of the men at the Amtrak Help Desk and asks them for advice. At one point, he gets very concerned about the fact that young Harry seems to be travelling alone. Eventually it gets to a point where he almost calls security, so the team had to break character and tell him who they really were. Towards the end, I think the man starts to get it.
It is really hilarious to see something like this just playing out on the street. To tell you the truth, I am rather surprised that more people didn’t realize what was going on. Harry Potter is one of the most widely-recognized franchises today. However, it is New York after all. There is such a wide range of people and personalities that call New York home, I would assume that it is hard to remain surprised after a while.
Take a look for yourself as young Harry makes his way through Penn Station thanks to the people at Improv Everywhere.