LONDON (AP) – The screams of young fans greeted the stars from the latest Harry Potter film at the British premiere Sunday of “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.”

Author J.K. Rowling also appeared before the hundreds of excited fans outside a Leicester Square cinema for the screening of the third film about the boy wizard.

“I love it; it’s just such fun,” Rowling said of the premiere. She added that work on the sixth Potter book was “well under way” but didn’t give a date for its completion.

Daniel Radcliffe, who plays Potter, signed autographs for adoring fans before entering the cinema.

“It’s so brilliant, it’s so exciting to be here. It’s bigger than New York and I didn’t think that could be possible,” the 14-year-old said, referring to the film’s U.S. premiere a week ago at Radio City Music Hall.

Asked how he felt about being a heart throb, Radcliffe said: “It’s great, I have no problems with it so far.”

Radcliffe and Emma Watson, who plays Hermione, held hands during a photo call. Watson said the crowd’s enthusiasm was “crazy. It’s very flattering more than anything else.”

Alfonso Cuaron – director of the Mexican hit “Y Tu Mama Tambien” – took over as director for “Prisoner of Azkaban.” Watson said the result was “a bit darker” than previous Potter films. “It has a much colder, eerier feel to it.”

Robbie Coltrane, who plays Hagrid, said the premiere was “insane. … I thought New York was wild, but this is even bigger.”

Other celebrities attending the premiere included model Claudia Schiffer and pop singer Natalie Imbruglia.

AP-ES-05-30-04 1950EDT

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