Sorry, Muggles, that eighth Harry Potter book you've been hearing about today has gone poof.
On Monday morning, Potterphiles worldwide began celebrating the possibility of an extra installment in the smash fantasy series--but rumors of such a tome has turned out to be all smoke and mirrors.
According to a report in Monday's Scotsman newspaper, Warner Bros. has registered three extra titles with the U.K. Patent Office, sparking speculation that the series, which author J.K. Rowling has always said will end with the seventh book, may have a longer shelf life.
Rowling is currently wrapping Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, the long-awaited fifth installment in the best-selling series. That means there are just two books left to write. But the film studio has registered three titles as trademarks--Harry Potter and the Alchemist's Cell, Harry Potter and the Chariots of Light and Harry Potter and the Pyramids of Furmat.
Warner Bros. has not yet returned calls for comment to clarify whether the extra titles mean another book (and movie), or if they are simply alternate names for books six and seven.
But since the news broke of the three titles, message boards across the Internet have been lighting up with the hopeful cheers of Harry Potter fanatics, and media were whipped into a frenzy at the possibility of more box-office and book store wizardry.
"There is a God after all," crowed one netizen on a Yahoo message board.
Rowling's rep, however, says the rumor is tabloid black magic, and the author does plan to put Harry to rest in the seventh book.
"The plan is to have only seven books in the series," literary agent Neil Blair tells Reuters. "There is no truth in the rumors."
What is true, however, is the imminent return of the bespectacled boy wizard to the theaters in just a few weeks. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets comes to the big screen on November 15, and ticket sellers nationwide are reporting already sold-out shows.
Indeed, the Potter empire has turned into one of the most lucrative book-and-movie pairings of all time. The first four books have sold upwards of 175 million copies around the world, and the first film, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone has grossed a whopping $900 million since its release last November.