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“I love Harry Potter,” she said. “It’s been such a big part of my life. I don’t know what I’ll do without it.”

The feeling is shared by he film’s stars, who like many of their fans grew up with the series.

Grint said Wednesday he felt “a little bit lost” without the movies in his life. Watson said she’d miss playing plucky Hermione Granger, who was “like a sister.”

Jason Isaacs, who plays villainous wizard Lucius Malfoy, said he was not surprised by the huge crowd in the square.

“The books are all about death and loss and mortality, so they are very emotional and they make people emotional,” he said. “You find this wherever you go in the world. Harry Potter just seems to light up the world.”

The premiere marks the end of an era that began when the then-unknown Rowling published “Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone” in 1997. The book blossomed from well-reviewed children’s tale to global phenomenon, launching a seven-book series that has sold 450 million copies around the world.

The last Harry Potter book appeared four years ago, and Rowling has said she does not plan more stories about the boy wizard. But she gave hope to fans awaiting new writing from her.

She told the BBC that she hadn’t wanted to publish a new book until the last movie was released.

“I will publish again, and this is in some sense for me a beginning as well as an end,” Rowling said.

The final film also ends a movie institution that has employed dozens of British actors and hundreds of crew members and technicians since the first film came out in 2001.

“It’s created such an infrastructure and such an industry, and it will be sorely missed,” “Deathly Hallows” director David Yates said Wednesday. “It’s been a mini-industry employing hundreds and thousands of people.”

He said he didn’t expect to see its like again.

“I think lightning doesn’t strike twice,” Yates said.


Martin Benedyk and Cassandra Vinograd contributed to this report.