Interview with Nick Hilton

Down below is my interview with the creator of the web series the Magic Circle – about a brand new web-series that explores the lives, loves and relationships of a group of Harry Potter fans who really ought to have moved on with their lives… But the boy wizard continues to work his magic and the books still exert a powerful hold…


Nick Hilton

1. Can you tell us a little about yourself?

My name’s Nick and I’m a London-based filmmaker. When I was younger, I was an avid Harry Potter fan and spent about three years living on internet forums and fan sites. Flash forward 10 years, and I’d just graduated from Oxford University (where some of the Harry Potter films were shot, and where Emma Watson was a contemporary of mine) and wanted to try my hand at making a web-series. I’d done longer narrative projects, but I fancied trying to make a popular series and The Magic Circle was born out of my childhood experiences with the world of Harry Potter fandom.

2. What made you want to do a web series on Adult Harry Potter Fans?

My own memories, combined with the fact that I’m now an adult! I thought it was ripe for comedy, riffing off the nerviness of a series like The IT Crowd and the hidden heart of a series like The Office. I wanted to use the world of Harry Potter fandom as a way of accessing these characters, who are the most interesting part of the show.

3. Has this been your first web series if not can you tell us what other things you’ve done?

This is my first web-series, yes. I’ve written several short films and a feature, and directed some of them too. I’m currently in post-production for a sci-fi short film which has been produced in the USA, Netherlands and New Zealand, but, other than that, The Magic Circle is the main personal project on my plate.

4. How did you choose the actors for The Magic Circle?

One of the great things about living in London is that there’s no short supply of actors. I run a filmmaking collaborative group, and that’s how I got three of our five actors. The other two applied to an open casting call that I submitted through a casting website. I got really lucky with the actors this time round, as they all have great comic timing and the chemistry between them works really well.

5. What can we expect to see in future episodes of The Magic Circle?

The next couple of episodes, which have already been shot, shake up the format a little bit and focus on the relationships between different characters. In Episode 2, for example, you can expect to see the relationship between Helen and Debbie taking form a bit, and, in Episode 3, we’ll look a little bit more at the relationship between Steve and Cassie. And, of course, there’ll be loads more Harry Potter jokes for people to nerd out on (including some themed poetry…)!

6. Do you prefer Gryffindor or Slytherin?

Gryffindor, for sure. Slytherin is just plain evil. I want no part of that.

7. What do you expect Harry Potter Fans to get from your web series?

I think Harry Potter fans will really enjoy it, because it’s not trying to extent the series or replicate JK Rowling’s inimitable style. Instead, we’re doing something that has plenty of comedy for the Harry Potter fans, but which extends the Harry Potter universe by bringing it into your living room. One of my favourite pieces of feedback we’ve had about Episode 1 was someone telling me that they saw ‘far too much of themselves’ in these characters. That’s the idea! These characters are obsessive and geeky, but they’re also clever, glib, funny and kind of charming, and I think that’s quite a good way of expressing the adult members of Harry Potter fandom.

Thanks to Nick for giving me the oppoturnity to interview him on The Magic Circle you can preview the first episode down below. Please subscribe to his channel and watch the next episode to come out next week. You can also follow the series on facebook, and twitter.

If you would like to know more about Nick you can go to his site here: