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Thursday, 3 October, 2002, 17:24 GMT 18:24 UK
BBC grabs Potter TV rights
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
The new film hits cinemas on 15 November
The BBC has won the rights to screen the terrestrial TV premiere of the first Harry Potter film.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone will have its first airing on BBC One although no date for the broadcast has been set.

The film is the second highest-grossing of all time, pulling in more than 650m worldwide.

Harry Potter is included in a package of films which the corporation has snapped up in a multi-million pound deal.

But the BBC has been criticised by Channel 5's head of programming Kevin Lygo, who accused the corporation of misusing licence payers' money.

'Spending'

Mr Lygo told an audience at a Bafta lecture in London that the BBC had spent 10 million on securing the rights to Harry Potter.

Mr Lygo said: "You could make six Full Montys for that. It makes me question the BBC's sense in spending so much on Hollywood movies."

But the BBC has denied it paid that sum for the rights.

A spokesman said that the figure was "grossly over-estimated" and rebutted Mr Lygo's comments.

"Our original programming hugely outweighs our films, but we are here to provide a broad range of programmes and films are part of that.

"People expect to see movies on the BBC and they enjoy seeing them because they are not interrupted with ad breaks."

The second film in the series, Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, is due to be released in the UK on 15 November and tickets for screenings have already gone on sale.

Its world premiere will be held in London on Sunday 3 November.


The second trailer for Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets aired on US TV on Thursday night - here's what one US fan thoughtAwesome!
US kids get sneak preview of Potter 2

In DepthIN DEPTH
Visit BBC News Online's Harry Potter special sectionHarry Potter
The latest from the wizard's world
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