Andy House, president of Sony Computer Entertainment,
explained to The Financial Times at E3 how the collaboration came about
in making the Wonderbook: Book of Spells by J.K. Rowling, the newest of
the author's supplementary books related to the Harry Potter series. The book
and augmented reality set up, for Playstation 3 Move, will cost $40 for the
package and be available in Europe this November, and North America in
House noted that Rowling was "enthusiastic" in taking part in the project, as a new means to release new content from the Harry Potter wizarding world universe, and a new way for readers to get their information.
Andy House: At the same time, we had the partnership with [J.K. Rowling’s] Pottermore [online property], something I was involved with personally. It was a form of serendipity, we built a good relationship with Michael Denny who runs Sony’s UK studios and was looking for ways to extend the partnership and he said they’d got this rather nascent idea around books and reading and the use of AR.
The next step was to bring it to the attention of J.K. Rowling and she became very enthusiastic. She was marvellous in guiding us in a certain direction. Her view was that text is important and that informed Book of Spells, we wanted to have this really interesting interaction with text itself so you’re getting children to enjoy the reading experience and getting something magical out of that.
The fact that Ms Rowling has become enthusiastic about it to the degree that she’s now creating new content is a great testament to the strength of what we’ve achieved.