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Does Disney Own Harry Potter?: Why Disney Missed The Magic

The Walt Disney Company began in 1923 as the Disney Brothers Studio. Since then, it has become one of the most prominent names in the film industry. But do they get them all? Does Disney own Harry Potter, too?

The simple answer is that Disney does not own Harry Potter. Instead, Rowling and Warner Brothers own Harry Potter. The author, JK Rowling, retains all rights to her intellectual property, while Warner Brothers Entertainment owns the production rights to the Harry Potter films. 

Does Disney Own Harry Potter

Disney seems to have a share in the popular films we love today. But have they been able to get in on the success of the Wizarding World franchise?

Who Owns the Rights to Harry Potter?

Like other franchises of its size, the Harry Potter franchise has various rights distributed to appropriate candidates. The list below includes a breakdown of who owns which rights to the Harry Potter franchise:

A More Thorough Breakdown of the Rights

  • Intellectual Property Rights: Owned exclusively by JK Rowling.

  • Publishing Rights: Scholastic owns publishing rights in the US, and Bloomsbury owns publishing rights in the UK.

  • Film Rights: Warner Brothers

  • Theme Park Rights: Universal Studios

Harry Potter

Why Didn’t Disney get the Wizarding Franchise?


Disney did not get film rights to the Harry Potter series because Warner Brothers beat them to the punch. Warner Brother bought the rights only one year after the first book was published.

Before the Walt Disney Disney company was able to make an offer, the first of the Harry Potter movies was already being filmed under the agreement with Warner Brothers.

Can Disney buy Harry Potter?

In reality, Disney could still buy Harry Potter, but the chances are slim. First, they would need to generate an offer that both Rowling and Warner Brothers would accept, which is not likely.

Warner Brothers has significant time and money invested in Harry Potter. In addition, Disney displayed their ability to negotiate with Rowling when negotiating its theme park rights.

Is Harry Potter Disney or Universal?


Disney did have a chance to get in on the Harry Potter franchise by adding the theme to Disney Parks, but they let it slip away. In the early 2000s, J.K. Rowling was prepared to sign a deal allowing Walt Disney World to use her theme in the Magic Kingdom theme park.

Unfortunately for the Walt Disney World Resort, they could not make an offer that met Rowling’s vision for her Wizarding World franchise. So, Disney World and their Magic Kingdom missed out on the magical world of Harry Potter Land.

Harry Potter Wand

The Wizarding World of Harry Potter

On the other hand, Universal Studios offered more money and space in their theme parks to create her vision. So instead, Rowling signed a deal with Universal Studios, allowing them exclusive rights to use her ideas in their theme parks to develop The Wizarding World of Harry Potter.

Where is the Harry Potter Theme Park?

Universal Studios created the ultimate Wizarding World theme park at Universal Orlando Resort and Universal Studios Hollywood, which quickly became one of the best Wizarding World properties. As a result, fans can experience the Wizarding World of Harry Potter in a way they could only imagine.

What Can You Do at the Harry Potter Theme Park?

When visiting the theme parks, the most popular experiences include Diagon Alley and Leaky Cauldron.


Where can you Watch Harry Potter Movies?

One of the biggest questions for Harry Potter fans is which streaming service they can use to stream the Wizarding World series. Finding one that allows you to step into the world of Harry Potter has proven to be a challenge for many.


Thanks to a landmark deal, NBC streaming service Peacock has Harry Potter rights. The streaming platform features all eight original Harry Potter movies, including Sorcerer’s Stone, Half-Blood Prince, and Deathly Hallows.

However, they do not have all of the Fantastic Beasts movies yet. You will only find the first two movies of the series.

Prime Video

Alternatively, Prime Video features all movies of the Harry Potter franchise. This includes the Fantastic Beasts movies and Deathly Hallows. This includes Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.

The only downside is that the movies must be purchased, even if you have a subscription. They are not included in the free content on this streaming platform. Luckily, some of the purchases include exclusive content.

Can you watch Harry Potter on Disney Plus?

Unfortunately, since the Walt Disney Company does not own movie rights to Harry Potter, it cannot be watched on the Disney Plus streaming platform. This has disappointed many fans of Rowling’s Wizarding World franchise.

Does Disney Own Star Wars?

Yes, Disney does own Star Wars. Disney purchased Star Wars from Lucasfilm, founded by George Lucas, for over 4 billion dollars. After Disney bought Star Wars in 2012, it only took them six years to regain the investment and begin generating a profit.

Does Disney Own Harry Potter Star Wars Land Entrance

Disney also acquired exclusive access rights to other popular titles in this purchase, including Indiana Jones.

Is There A Star Wars Land at Walt Disney World?

Now that Disney has acquired exclusive access rights to the Star Wars title are attractions relating to Star Wars at Disney World, including Hollywood studios. It is called Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge.

Those who visit Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge get the whole experience of the magical world. This includes character experiences and dining options within the attraction.

Does Disney Own Harry Potter - Star Wars

Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge even features its own dining locations with dishes that fall into the Star Wars theme.

What Else has Disney Bought?

After an intense bidding war with Comcast Corporation, the parent company of NBC, Disney finally won and was allowed to buy 21st Century Fox assets. This endeavor cost Disney over 73 billion dollars.

Additionally, Disney bought Marvel in 2019. They paid around 4 billion dollars to obtain Marvel.

Final Thoughts

While the relationship between Disney and the Wizarding World may not have worked out, both are still wildly successful. In the following years, Disney made several profitable deals, and Rowling’s Net Worth is currently over 1 billion dollars.

In addition, Harry Potter fans that have been a part of the magical world since the beginning are still fascinated with the magnificent tales of Harry Potter. J.K. Rowling is even considering a new live-action to give them something to look forward to.

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