For some time now, many Potterheads have theorized that Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, the upcoming play penned by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne, and John Tiffany, would be a prequel to the popular children's fantasy series. That's not the case.
The Cursed Child will take place 19 years after the events of The Deathly Hallows and will follow a now middle-aged Harry Potter and his young son Albus Severus on an adventure involving a new evil.
"While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted," the play's new synopsis reads. "As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.”
The play's new site is chock full of plot info that's sure to charm fans (working for the Ministry of Magic? Not great!). But there's also a downside to these new developments: Most, if not all, of the fanfiction that's been written about the wizarding world post-Voldemort is now pretty much confirmed to be invalid.
The world of fanfiction can be a little tricky to navigate. While all fanfics, by their very definition, are not canonical, the impact that they can have on fan communities isn't something to scoff at.
In the eight years since the last Potter novel was published, hundreds of thousands of stories have been written about what might have become of Harry, Ron, and Hermione.
Whether J.K. Rowling ever actually read any of these is unclear, but the community's continued interest in the Potterverse (that's led to theme parks, product placement, and spinoff movies) isn't just because new readers are discovering the original books. Fanfiction keeps people involved with franchises and now, a whole bunch of these theories have been proven, well, wrong.
That being said, it's not as if Rowling set out to crush anyone's dreams.