Following Goblet of Fire’s publication, everyone’s eager to know the Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Illustrated Edition release date. Last updated May 2020
There isn’t a Harry Potter fan out there who doesn’t love the Illustrated Editions, and Order of the Phoenix will be no different. Rowling’s seven part story has never looked so good thanks to illustrator Jim Kay’s incredible work.
The Goblet of Fire Illustrated Edition was released in October 2019, and now that his work on the fourth installment is complete, Kay is working on the Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Illustrated Edition.
Work on the Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Illustrated Edition started in Spring 2019. Kay had said on his website at the time, “I’ve been out and about researching for the Order of the Phoenix last week, with trips to Great Dixter and Ightham Mote in the South of England.”
“I’m going to try and make the next book a bit more ‘me,'” he continued. “It’s been a huge strain working outside my comfort range for the last six years, so hopefully I will get the courage to be a bit more expressive and push the visuals in a darker direction. I think it would suit the text.”
In October 2019, Kay said that he had recently moved, and “we have lost around 6 months [of work on Order of the Phoenix] to all the problems with moving and fixing up a new place, and Louise is tied up with renovations for the next couple of months. As soon as I’m back after the promo tour, I will really have to get cracking [on the book].”
In May 2020, Kay offered fans a couple sneak peeks into the book. He shared a draft of Kreacher, the Black Family House Elf, as well as what a harness will look like for the Thestrals.
Here’s a sketch of Kreacher:
And here’s a sketch of the Thestral harness. Note Kay’s comment about adding a skull bell to it “for fun”:
Kay, who’s a big fan of Harry Potter, understands that things start getting really dark for Harry Potter in the fifth installment — after all, the Dark Lord regained a body at the end of Goblet of Fire. “I’d forgotten just how rough a time Harry has in the Order, not a happy year by any stretch,” Kay says. “It’s a bleak story to match our bleak times, perhaps.”
‘Order of the Phoenix’ Illustrated Edition release date
The illustrated Harry Potter books were on a yearly cycle until Goblet of Fire, which was published two years after Prisoner of Azkaban. The longer wait between the two books was no surprise, because the fourth book in Rowling’s series is drastically longer than POA. A longer book means more illustrations are needed, and Kay simply needed more time.
The fifth book is even longer than Goblet, so we expect the Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Illustrated Edition release date will be no earlier than Fall 2021. The end-of-year release timetable for each of the Illustrated Editions published thus far has made it the perfect holiday gift. This means it’ll arrive around the same time Fantastic Beasts 3 hits theaters.
That’s a long wait, but it’s absolutely understandable. Creating all of these gorgeous illustrations takes time, and since there will probably only be one set of Illustrated Editions ever created, we understand Kay needs lots of time to create a perfect set of books.
With Half-Blood Prince and Deathly Hallows only slightly shorter than Phoenix, we assume that the remaining two Illustrated Editions will be published in Fall 2023 and Fall 2025 respectively.
Though there’ve been many versions of the Harry Potter books published, this is the first time the series has been illustrated in such detail. The books are published in both the U.S. and U.K. under a joint partnership between Scholastic and Bloomsbury.
Two of the Harry Potter spin-off books by Rowling, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and The Tales of Beedle the Bard, have also had Illustrated Editions published in recent years. The Quidditch Through the Ages Illustrated Edition will arrive October 2020 — that’s the year in between GOF and OOTP.
And as if we weren’t spoiled enough, there’s another Illustrated Edition in the works: MinaLima, the graphic artists behind the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts movies, will release an illustrated edition of Book 1 this October. Judging by the fact that it says “Year 1” on its spine, it’s possible that MinaLima intends to illustrate the entire series.
Early First Look
On Instagram, Kay shared a mold he built of Kreacher, which will aid him in creating illustrations of the Black Family House Elf:
He’s also been developing thestrals. In a separate Instagram post, Kay said he’s been eager to tackle these unique creatures:
View this post on Instagram
Made a maquette out of a coat hanger, toilet roll, kebab sticks and clay to provide shading references for Thestral illustrations. Might make some wings out of silk to get the folds too. Sorry I’ve been quiet, been a difficult couple of weeks. #jimkay #jimkayillustrations #thestral #modelmaking #claysculpture #harrypotter #theorderofthephoenix
This article will stay updated on the latest developments concerning the Order of the Phoenix Illustrated Edition release date as soon as they come to light.
While you’re waiting for the fifth installment in Kay’s series, be sure to listen to our Harry Potter podcast MuggleCast, in which we celebrate and analyze the world of Potter every week!