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Is This How J.K. Rowling Originally Ended The Harry Potter Series?!

| Filed under: Film FlickersHarry PotterBookz


Wow. We honestly have NO idea what to make of this!

Although it's safe to say that critics and readers alike were completely enamoured with the final installment of J.K. Rowling's wildly successful Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, there has been a great deal of debate regarding the public's feelings regarding the novel's - and its subsequent film adaptation's - epilogue.

However, according to journalist Greg Palast, who befriended the author years ago, there was an original, wildly different conclusion to the series, which deters from the final text around the last confrontation between Harry and his nemisis, Voldemort, and then continues off in a much stranger direction than what made it into print!

According to Palast:

Some of you may recall that, years ago, when I lived in England, writing for The Guardian, when I shared the bestseller list with Jo Rowling (she at the pinnacle, me in the valley), we became buds through my twins’ love for her astonishing work.

But Jo knows that I found the conclusion of her series a sorry let-down, a second-rate “Show Down at the OK Corral” for Wizards. In my opinion (and she does not at all agree), Jo was too distracted by a concern for how the ending would play on film.

I bugged her about it until she told me the “other” endings. Every author has them – and we all look over our old drafts, after publication, and say, “Damn! I should have used that version” – then we lock it away before someone sees it and agrees.

No, Jo wouldn’t show me typed copies, but she told me a couple of “I could have done this” endings.

One of them knocked me over, and I have to share it. (Sorry Jo, that’s the danger of befriending an investigative reporter – if you forget to use the magical words, “This is off the record.”) I can understand, though, why she would put aside this quieter, yet far more harrowing, conclusion.

I wrote it down that night in October 2007. I don’t claim that this is exactly word-for-word as she told it to me (Jo: please edit!) and I left out all the side stuff about me telling my oblivious kids, “You really should listen to this; years from now you’ll want to say you heard this,” and the minor mishap with my coffee.

But I just have to put it out here and hope that Jo and her publisher don’t slam me with an Avada Kedavra curse.

I’ll assume you’ve read the books – and if you haven’t, for shame! – so I won’t introduce this at all except to say that this alternative (and quite troubling) ending veers away from the printed and film versions just before Harry’s final confrontation with The Dark Lord, Voldemort.

And please: If you want to say that I didn’t get her voice and story details exactly, keep in mind that I’m working from mental notes – and that I’m no J.K. Rowling. But then, no one is.

Check out the VERY SPOILER-FILLED ALTERNATE CONCLUSION to Harry Potter and the Deathly HallowsAFTER THE JUMP!

To the Forbidden Forest

Harry marched toward the field where Voldemort waited with his pack of Dementors. Harry’s scar burned brutally, saving him the pain of thinking too deeply about his decision, likely to bring him nothing but death.

What special evil, what deadly and devious spell had the Dark Lord prepared for Harry’s destruction? Voldemort had hunted after Harry for more than a decade; doubtless Voldemort would arm himself with a special curse far more powerful and final than the Avada Kedavra which had failed to kill Harry as a child.

Harry was terribly right. The Dark Lord, in his clearing in the Forbidden Forest, was preparing a charm as devastating as Harry feared, and far more horrific. As Harry marched to this fated meeting, Voldemort passed his wand among the icy Dementors, commanding each to lay their Kiss upon it.

Voldemort, in those pained, lonely nights of his exile and recovery, had conceived of a way to hurl a Dementor’s kiss from his wand, the kiss that would take away the soul of its victim forever. And now he would blast Harry with hundreds of them. Voldemort’s reward would be greater than watching Harry’s burial. He would have Harry frozen in place, Harry’s living being encased for eternity at the moment of Harry’s ultimate humiliation and defeat, a terrifying monument to Voldemort’s victory for all to see for all time. Voldemort’s joy rose with every Dementor’s kiss to his wand.

Harry could feel their grave-like cold as he approached and the pull of their despair. It was hopeless, and he was helpless in the face of it. And he knew it.

But then, Harry felt the presence of a young man and woman, though he could not see them. These two ghosts lovingly held his body up and raised his spirit. It was, he was certain, the last remaining life-force of his parents, making one last sacrifice by joining him on his final journey. He allowed himself a moment of peaceful happiness, feeling them so close.

Then he stopped. Harry shivered with a deep chill of recognition. They were not his parents. They were Voldemort’s: the young Tom Riddle and his bride who, for this occasion, had taken back her beautiful maid’s countenance. They said, using no words, “Our dearest son, we will not allow you to be harmed.”

Were their words for him? Or for Voldemort? Somehow, it didn’t seem to matter – they seemed so kind when he needed nothing more at this moment than a parent’s love.

Harry, and the two warm spirits becoming more visible, approached the edge of the swirling crowd of Voldemort’s followers, who parted, preparing to give the victim an easy corridor to his doom.

Voldemort’s wand had returned to his white, skeletal hand. The Dark Lord pointed it confidently to where Harry would surely emerge from the crowd, not yet to destroy Potter but to hold him while he prepared to give Harry an oration on the eternal punishment about to strike him.

Voldemort laughed when Harry stumbled through. But when the Dark Lord saw the specters of his parents, he howled as if cut in half. With his furious heart in flames, Voldemort immediately unleashed the deadly Kisses, bellowing, “Oppugno Mortimbessios!” And all the vile terrors of the Dementors, in an unstoppable flash from his wand, rushed toward Harry and the spirits at his side.

It was only a hundredth of a second for Voldemort’s curse to reach Harry. But somehow the world seemed to slow down, the Earth ceased to rotate; all on the planet held still, though Harry was aware he was free to move. Harry had planned every shield charm for his defense, but all now were clearly useless. Harry found himself unable to do more than calmly bend to one knee and bow his head, preparing to accept the force of the blow and his death and end.

As he kneeled, in that quiet moment outside time, the two shadows flew from him toward Voldemort. And Voldemort changed. The Dementors’ chill wind, and Time, moved backward; and there was Voldemort, growing to his younger, more potent, frightening self.

The curse struck Harry’s scar, obliterating it, then, in a loud roar, he felt the crushing pain of his skull opening, and then the shrieking curse rushing from his head – back toward the wand that sent it.

As the curse turned back toward him, Voldemort continued to grow younger still, until he was a little child again with his mother and father at his side. When they realized the full force of Voldemort’s own spell was about to strike him, his parents put their reassuring arms around their son to protect him from this ultimate blow.

And then it struck. And now the three entwined souls, Tom Riddle, his wife and young child, would remain forever entombed in that one moment, never able to leave.

And never wanting to.

Hogwarts AD 2130

The headmaster, his stringy white beard uncombed and his wrinkled, bald head topped by a drooping wizard’s cap, looked with wistful gratitude at the empty picture frame he’d convinced the Ministry to put up, despite their reluctance. He knew he’d soon be residing in that little square etched with the name, “Harry Potter,” separated from Albus Dumbledore’s only by the portraits of Headmistresses McGonagall and Chang.

The old wizard could hear below the school abuzz with preparations for his 150th birthday. He shifted Ginny, a bird of paradise, to a perch nearer his desk. His wife, rather than grow old, had turned herself into this beautiful bird, but still insisted on giving un-birdlike advice. “Harry, dearest, you can’t miss your own birthday party. And it’s so lovely outside.”

Indeed, the summer day had brought out scores of picnickers who had come to set their baskets and blankets out near the warm light cast by the living statue of the happy family with the little child. No one but the old headmaster knew who was encased in that glowing sphere. When the Dementors were released from the spell of Voldemort, they, and indeed every wizard excepting Harry and the shade of Albus, were cleansed of all memory of the Dark Lord. Now, after more than a century, curiosity about the family in the statue had long ago ceased. Harry had simply ordered a plaque placed there. It said only, “Riddles.”

“I will go,” he told his feathered wife, “but I have to keep an eye on the boy for a bit.” Harry’s great, great grandson, not yet able to walk, silently played on the rug with his chocolate frog. Then suddenly, in inexplicable anger, little Tom crushed the candy animal. Harry watched this, and knew the whole world would soon darken again for generations to come.


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59 comments to “Is This How J.K. Rowling Originally Ended The Harry Potter Series?!”

  1. 1

    i call bullshit on this…

  2. 2


  3. 3


  4. 4

    that would've been a terrible ending imo..

  5. 5

    wow, i mean if this is real, then jk really missed out because she would've been setting herself up for more sequals, but i was very happy with the ending of the book. the movie disappointed me because of the lack of consistency to the book, but that ending was MUCh better than the one she didn't publish

  6. 6

    No way! He got stuff wrong in his "re-telling". The "Riddles" were not Voldemorts parents - Tom Riddle was with Marvolo Gaunt's daughter. Why would Ginny be turned into a friggin' bird anyways? Why would Harry's great great grandson be "dark"? The part of Voldemort lived inside Harry was not actually part of Harry but a separate entity, and Rowling made sure the reader knew that.

    Ok, maybe I would be sounding like Comic Book Store guy from the Simpsons here, but that would be the "worst ending ever!"

    This is just some shlep looking to cash in or make a name for himself to piggyback Rowlings fame and the movie's $500 billion record breaking opening weekend.

  7. 7

    Isn't it pretty common knowledge that JK Rowling wrote the epilogue around the time she finished Sorcerer's Stone (before the entire series was even wrapped), knowing that no matter where her story went, that is how it would ultimately end?

  8. yvo84 says – reply to this


    Okay, if he really wanted to convince people he should have just wrote what she supposedly told him. Not tried to write the last few pages of the book. I don't mean to sound nasty, but he writes nothing like JK and maybe that why reading all that felt like such a chore/joke. Besides the fact that it didn't really make sense.

  9. 9

    Is that Michael Jackson without his wig?? or Nose???

  10. 10

    PS - Where did you even get this from? The Onion?

  11. 11

    i wish she had gone with this ending… i HATED the original one. it was too sugar coated, too happy-ending like… would've loved to read this one.

  12. auds says – reply to this


    This is the shittiest piece of crap I've ever heard. If this isn't a joke, I'm extremely glad that whoever this moron is had no control over what JK wrote. Her ending was perfect in all ways!!

  13. fid says – reply to this


    That made absolutely no sense and I would find it difficult to believe that Rowling had this as another potential ending because it doesn't coincide with the information provided from the other books. The build up to the finale would be so confusing! I didn't like the epilogue from the original books because it seemed to pander to children but I thought the ending was quite satisfying otherwise.

  14. 14

    There is absolutely no way that this is true. It doesn't make sense at all and does not follow the plot of the HP stories. As someone earlier pointed out, "the Riddles" were not Voldemort's parents - his parents were Tom Riddle and Gaunt's daughter (not a maid). Voldemort never knew his parents (father left, mother died) and he grew up in an orphanage.

    We all know that Ginny would never turn herself into a bird permanently (I don't even think that is possible) and Harry never would have been a professor or Headmaster, he was always going to be an Auror. I call BS on this guy's story.

  15. Orlzy says – reply to this


    I do not like this ending AT ALL!! I'm really happy she didn't use it! It's awful!

  16. 16

    Well actually I think this is pretty good and interesting. Different. Touching. Moving… and open for other stories. If this alternative end is true, then I think that indeed she should have put it in the book. I have to admit, as dearly as I love all the Harry Potter books, that I was a bit disappointed by the end. But maybe she really wanted to put a definitive end to it with the official end of the story.

  17. 17

    I think it's a great ending … more appropriate to the strangeness of the entire series …

  18. 18

    I don't know it doesn't sound so bad to me it's different and not predictable, though I haven't really followed this series so I wouldn't know all the details. I also have to watch the last film to compare the two.

  19. 19

    i kinda like it — not the Ginny-bird part — but it's intriguing

  20. 20

    The ending in the book gave the fans closure and made it pretty clear there would not be another book in the series.
    This ending would leave the world hassling JK for a follow up or new series. Not to mention yank off millions of fans cause it stinks.

  21. 21

    This makes no sense! Voldemort/Tom Riddle was an ORPHAN!

  22. 22

    whaaaat! i like the original ending 300 times better

  23. 23

    it doesnt make sense because obviously (if it is true) it was done when the plot was very different. im not quite sure whether i believe it- some elements are very jk rowling esque- so ill just wait to hear what she says..

  24. Hun says – reply to this


    Riddles parents and a feathered wife??????? what the ….. what? So glad it ended the way it did. :)

  25. 25

    Greg Palast is known for alleged fabrication… not sure if I can believe this. Don't think JKR would make one of her main characters decide to become a bird forever…

  26. 26

    Crock of shit. As if she would just tell an investigative journalist the ending to her wildly successful series. If she told him this, it was probably just her fucking with him because he's an annoying idiot. But I honestly believe he just made this tripe up at a very opportune time.

  27. 27

    What kind of friend of JK Rowling would expose an "alternate ending"? It's definitely BS because 1. it doesn't follow the prophecy 2. where is the 3rd Deathly Hallow and the list could go on and on. And plus this guy sounded like a douche.

  28. 28

    Re: icesa90 – 100% agree

  29. 29

    haha why would you post this? it's total bullshit. jk rowling wrote the epilogue when she wrote the first book and knew how it would all end from the beginning. also the thing about voldemorts parents, and why the hell would ginny become a bird? this was ridiculous

  30. 30

    the only part of the book i wished was diferent was the epilogue. just because so much more could have been explained. it was obvious harry+ginny and ron+hermione would have children go to hogwarts.

  31. 31

    Voldemort's parents were never married, Tom Riddle was slipped a love potion…

  32. 32

    HAHAHAHAHAH wow. so no one remembers anything about voldemort.. and harry created a plaque in honor of the "riddles"? and on top of that, there was a reincarnation and young Tom is about to "darken" the world again?

    Nice try.

    And cho chang as headmistress. hahahaha.

  33. 33

    I do not believe this at all! She just told him all of this and he wrote it down in this way? I don't think so, Jo is the best secret keeper there is, I hardly believe she told anybody anything about the books

  34. 34

    Bullshit. Plain and simple.

  35. 35

    Hmm I agree with you people that it doesn't sound like Rowling. But it totally makes sense to me…and not confusing. Meh.

  36. 36

    This makes no sense in the aspect of who the headmasters on the wall next to Dumbledore would be, because if it was at the end of the novel and Harry had already discovered that Snape was a good character, why would his headmaster portrait be taken down? And didn't JK Rowling make it clear that nobody but the staff was allowed to be on the Hogwarts campus during the summer months? Why would there be picknickers? And why would Harry choose to have a huge birthday celebration when throughout the course of the series it is made evident that he is an intensely private character who dislikes attention and the limelight?

  37. 37

    This is total bullshit…the writing is not even REMOTELY her style what so ever. Not even from the first book…this is more Stephanie Meyer writting lol!

  38. 38

    While I think that Greg Palast is a liar and an opportunist, I'm sure the ending that we read in the book was a fourth, fifth, or tenth version J.K. wrote. No writer's first thought is the one that actually gets published. I'm sure she did have alternate ideas (more than just one) and ways to get to the end but this is not one of them.

    Besides, she has said on more than one occasion that she wrote the last paragraph(s) for the last book while she was still on Book 4 or 5. She knew where she wanted to end up. This guy just wants his 5 minutes of fame.

  39. 39

    Re: yvo84 – thats exactly what i was thinking, it was written NOTHING like how JK Rowling writes.

  40. 40

    Terrible ending! Although this may have been one of the endings she wrote early on during the writing of the Sorcerer's Stone I'm thankful she didn't use it. Everyone keeps saying she ended the series in a way that would not leave it open for more Harry Potter books, yet I think she left it open to write about the next Potter generation, Harry's story had to come to an end at some point.

  41. 41


  42. 42

    Baaaahahahahahahaha! Complete and utter bullshit! :D :D :D

  43. 43

    Yeah, I call bs. That just doesn't make sense at all. As many people said, Tom Riddle was an orphan, his dad and mom weren't married and he lived in an orphanage till he went to Hogwarts…so who in the world are the Riddles? While the ending was a little too "happily ever after for me"…it is a kids book. Not to mention…just because she didn't set up an evil wizard…if she so chose she could easily have one come along and make the world dark again for Harry's children.

  44. 44

    So so fake. Amateur prose — how dare they say JK Rowling wrote this trash!

  45. 45

    Lol Jo would never write this. This is like bad fanfiction.

  46. 46

    Sounds like someone wanted their fanfic to get some attention.
    That looks nothing like JK's writing style.

  47. jasha says – reply to this


    so many friggin morons post on this site, I don't know this guy but it's entire plausible that she had this ending in mind with possibly a dozen others, I highly doubt she only wrote one!? AND he ACTUALLY SAID this is from his notes and he's just writing the gist of it OF COURSE IT DOESN'T READ LIKE JK ROWLING HERSELF WROTE IT

  48. 48

    BS I doubt JK would have considered such a shit ending.

  49. 49

    I definitely LOVE the ending of the 7th book, however the last paragraph of this ending would have been a spectacular twist!

  50. 50

    this sounds like something Gilderoy Lockharte would write.

  51. 51

    People are calling BS on this because they've read the books. As others have mentioned there are no "Riddles" only Tom Riddle and Voldy's mom, and if I recall correctly Voldy's dad left before he was even born, so why would he come back and protect his son and be with his "wife" when he never loved her or cared for them in the first place?

  52. 52

    This sounds like a fanfic that I've read before -_-

  53. 53

    This was the worst thing I've ever read, the journalist who wrote this should be sued for slandering the name of our Queen Rowling.

  54. 54

    i think this is a load of crap. i would also like to call BULLSHIT on this…

  55. 55

    I don't see how things could have come full circle.

  56. 56

    it might be BS but it could possible be true. everybody thats saying there is no way she wrote this and that it doesnt make sense that tom riddle(the dad) would come back with his wife and stuff. well before she wrote the books she had to pick a ending because due to the complexity of the plot she needed to know the ending. so she probably wrote this ending before the books even started so she might not have know what she was going to do with voldy's parents.

  57. 57

    it might be BS but it could possible be true. everybody thats saying there is no way she wrote this and that it doesnt make sense that tom riddle(the dad) would come back with his wife and stuff. well before she wrote the books she had to pick a ending because due to the complexity of the plot she needed to know the ending. so she probably wrote this ending before the books even started so she might not have know what she was going to do with voldy's parents and how that situation would play out.

  58. 58

    so i was reading to the forbidden forest and i was like ok cool then i read the epiloge i was wtf…..im glad it ended the way it did..

  59. 59

    Total bullshit. Everyone knows JoRo finished the epilogue right after Philosophers Stone…. and the way she ended it is her way of showing that love is stronger than magic(sorry for being cheesy) and harry would never be headmaster henever would think he could do it. Oh, and Ginny a fucking pheonix? Oh ya that sure would happen… and anyway that does not sound even a little bit like JoRo's writing style..