The Harry Potter franchise has been entertaining audiences for decades, with entire generations brought up on the beloved books and accompanying movies. The Wizarding World has been making headlines thanks to the Return To Hogwarts reunion special on HBO Max, although Jon Stewart recently entered the mix thanks to a hot take he had about Gringotts’ Goblins. And now Stewart has responded after comments about J.K. Rowling and anti-semitism go viral.
Jon Stewart has had a long and celebrated career, and he’s also known for using his platform to speak on important issues. But that’s not what he had in mind when recording an episode of his podcast and joking about Harry Potter. His words were taken out of context and quickly went viral, with some outlets reporting that he was accusing J.K. Rowling of anti-semitism. Stewart set the record straight on a new episode (via Twitter), recalling:
That’s certainly some much-needed context when it comes to Jon Stewart’s viral comments about Gringotts bank in Harry Potter. He was merely riffing with some friends while recording a podcast, and recalled noticing how the Goblins who run the bank resemble negative Jewish stereotypes about moneylenders. That’s what eventually circulated all over the internet, and seemingly landed the former Daily Show host in some hot water. Stewart went on to clarify his feelings about the Wizarding World and J.K. Rowling, saying:
Well, there you have it. Jon Stewart really put his feelings in black and white here, highlighting that he doesn’t think Harry Potter or its author are anti-simetic in any way. He was simply joking, while also pointing out how certain tropes have managed to become intrinsically part of the culture. That includes major movie franchises.
Given just how massively popular the Harry Potter franchise continues to be, there are generations of hardcore fans that likely reacted to Jon Stewart’s (out of context) comments about Gringotts. And this month-old conversation only seemingly went viral as a result of Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts’ release. While addressing the controversy, Stewart continued to hammer the point home, including an F-bomb.
This story likely also went viral so quickly because J.K. Rowling has been involved in some controversy for the past few years. She’s been in a long-standing battle with the public over comments deemed by many as transphobic. So a claim of anti-semitism understandably turned heads. But now Jon Stewart has cleared up the situation, and likely quelled the drama in the process.
Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts is streaming now, and the magical franchise will return to theaters with Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore on April 15th, 2022. In the meantime, check out the 2022 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience.