Theater Warns Harry Potter Fans

Muggles anxious to see a preview of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone should not resort to trickery, warns a theater chain that is showing the trailer this weekend.

General Cinemas said it will not refund money for moviegoers who buy tickets simply to see the trailer (which is less than two minutes long) and then return to the box office to demand a refund. This crude phenomenon is apparently common enough for the franchise to issue nonrefundable tickets to all movies with the much-anticipated Harry Potter trailer attached to them, The Associated Press noted.

"We've posted signs that if [Potter fans] are to see the trailer, they can't come out and ask for a refund afterward," General Cinemas spokesman Brian Callaghan noted. "If they're big fans and come out to catch a glimpse of Harry Potter, they can't do it for free."

No matter how stupid it sounds — why not be sensible and pick a movie you'd like to see that just happens to be showing the Potter preview? — Callaghan said fans have already been pulling the refund trick, and that eventually it could hurt the chain's revenue.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, based on the best-selling J.K. Rowling book, is scheduled to hit theaters Nov. 16. The film stars 11-year-old newcomer Daniel Radcliffe as boy wizard Harry, along with Alan Rickman, John Cleese, Robbie Coltrane, Maggie Smith, and Zoe Wanamaker.