Even with "The Deathly Hallows – Part 2" looming, fans aren't about to let Harry Potter end, between churning out their own fiction and forming wizard rock bands. But perhaps some of the oddest – and most entertaining – DIY tributes have come in musical video parodies.
We've enjoyed “A Very Potter Musical,” which helped launch “Glee” star Darren Criss' career, and the "Potter Puppet Pals" short, which has notched more than 105 million views on YouTube since 2007. This week, though, we're getting a kick out of a new effort that's an unlikely mash-up between the boy wizard and the irreverent Tony-winning musical, "The Book of Mormon."
In the video, a very talented young woman who posts to YouTube as "tessaROXX" plays various Potter characters – Voldemort included – on a "Brady Bunch"-style split-screen grid, singing "Hello!" from the musical by the duo behind "South Park." She turns the tune from a pitch for Joseph Smith into a plea for Potter ("I would like to share with you the most amazing book!").
We're predicting viral success for the video, which is as sweet as it is silly. But the Potter parody has some catching up to do to match the YouTube hits racked up by another new mash-up, a spoof inspired by "The Lord of the Rings" series, which sparks similar strong feelings – and creative efforts – from fans.
The video features the evil Saruman, who confounds Gandalf and friends by bursting into song from atop the Tower of Isengard. His tune of choice, a 1960s Russian nonsense novelty hit known as "Trololo," emerged as an Internet meme a couple years ago, turning up in unexpected places, as kind of a Soviet-era version of the Rickroll.
Speaking of memes, a new one may be in the offing, thanks to another recent mash-up that makes comedic use of an intense scene from the 1979 George C. Scott drama "Hardcore," about a man who discovers his runaway daughter has become a porn star.
The scene in which Scott's character breaks down while watching one of his child's movies in a theater is interspersed with the trailer for Adam Sandler's latest comedy, "Jack & Jill," in which he plays a man and his twin sister. “Turn it off,” Scott cries. “Turn it off!”
Sandler might want to hope his film is better than the trailer suggests – or least funnier than this very clever video. With all this fan work for free on YouTube, who needs to go to the movies – except, perhaps, for inspiration for new mash-ups. Check out some of our latest favorites below:
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Hester is founding director of the award-winning, multi-media NYCity News Service at the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism. He is the former City Editor of the New York Daily News, where he started as a reporter in 1992. Follow him on Twitter.