Harry Potter, a magical concoction of the English writer J. K. Rowling, created an immediate sensation when the first book in the series was published in 2000. Dearly loved by young folk around the world, Harry Potter has become an immensely popular figure of children’s folklore and literature. The first and second film adaptations of this best selling series of novels have raked in US$1.9 billion in box office. Through these novels and movies, Harry Potter has been successfully marketed worldwide. To encourage younger generations to collect stamps, Chunghwa Post is issuing two souvenir sheets entitled “Magical Creatures” and “Hogwarts.” They are being timed to come out simultaneously with the release of the third Harry Potter movie “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban” on June 4, 2004. Each of these sheets consists of six stamps, five with denominations of NT$5 and one with a denomination of NT$25. The stamps have been designed by Double Impact Licensing and Marketing Inc. and printed by China Color Printing Co., Ltd. in deep-etch offset.
The design of the “Magical Creatures” stamps follows:
1. Owl Post (Upper Left): Harry’s messenger owl, Hedwig, brings Harry a parcel containing a card and a present from Hermione on his 13th birthday
2. Close-up of Hedwig (Upper Right): By delivering messages and thus facilitating communication, Harry’s pet Hedwig plays an important role.
3. Riding a Hippogriff for the First Time (Middle Left): As the new Care-of-Magical-Creatures teacher at Hogwarts, Hagrid gives Harry guidance as to how to ride a Hippogriff.
4. Close-up of a Hippogriff (Middle Right): Hippogriffs have the bodies, hind legs, and tails of horses, but the front legs, wings and heads of what seem to be giant eagles, with cruel, steel-colored beaks and large, brilliant orange eyes.
5. The Monster Book of Monsters (Lower Left): A present from Hagrid on Harry’s 13th birthday. A required book for the Care-of-Magical-Creatures class, this book can bite and flip onto its edge and scuttle sideways on its covers like some weird crab.
6. Close-up of Crookshanks (Lower Right): Crookshanks is a huge, slightly bow-legged ginger cat with thick, fluffy fur.
The design of the “Hogwarts” stamps follows:
1. Quidditch Match (Upper Left): In the storm, Harry rides his Nimbus 2000 in Gryffindor’s match against Hufflepuff.
2. Dementors Come onto the Quidditch Pitch (Upper Right): At the moment the Dementors set foot on the field, Harry feels a chill and hears the sound of his mother’s pleading cries before she died. Then he crashes to the ground.
3. Riding a Hippogriff Together to Save Sirius Black (Middle Left): Harry and Hermione use a Time-Turner to rescue the Hippogriff Buckbeak. They then ride Buckbeak to rescue Sirius Black.
4. Third Year at Hogwarts (Middle Right): During his third year at Hogwarts, Harry learns how to defend himself from truly terrifying enemies.
5. Practicing the Patronus Charm to Repel Dementors (Lower Left): Professor Lupin, the Defense-Against-the-Dark-Arts teacher, uses a Boggart to teach Harry how to repel Dementors.
6. Conquering Fears (Lower Right): Harry bravely faces his fears to conjure a Patronus and defeat a Boggart that has turned into a Dementor.
(1) First Day Cover in large size in two designs to be sold at NT$3.00 piece
(2) Folder especially prepared for the stamps in two designs to be sold at NT$8.00 apiece
(3) Folder with crystal mount for better protection of the stamps in two designs to be sold at NT$8.00 apiece
(4) Loose-leaf stamp album page with plastic cover in two designs to be sold at NT$16.00 apiece
(5) Pre-cancelled First Day Cover affixed with a souvenir sheet in two designs to be sold at NT$53.00 apiece.