Five years ago, it was the end of an era for Harry Potter fans across the globe as the final installment of the movie franchise premiered. Never did I expect that Warner Bros. would go ahead with a new trilogy set in J.K. Rowling’s Wizarding World years later. Today, WB proudly announced the start of production for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, a new film series based on one of Potter’s more interesting textbooks during his schooling at Hogwarts.
“Marking the screenwriting debut of J.K. Rowling, the script was inspired by her character Newt Scamander’s Hogwarts textbook, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” states a press release. Any skepticism I may have had about this new film trilogy was erased once I heard J.K. Rowling was writing the screenplay. I think all fans sighed in relief knowing that Rowling will still be the source of the films’ material.
Eddie Redmayne, who won the Best Actor Oscar this year for his performance in The Theory of Everything, will play the main character, Newt Scamander. Scamander is “the wizarding world’s preeminent magizoologist, who stops in New York following his travels to find and document magical creatures.” It will be the first time that fans will learn about the American wizarding world and its history. Rowling hinted on Twitter that Native American magic may play an influence in America’s magical world and studies.
The film also stars Katherine Waterston (Inherent Vice) as Tina; Alison Sudol (Transparent) as Tina’s sister, Queenie; Tony Award winner Dan Fogler (Hannibal) as Jacob; Ezra Miller (The Perks of Being A Wallflower) as Credence; two-time Oscar nominee Samantha Morton (In America) as Mary Lou; Jenn Murray (Brooklyn) as Chastity; young newcomer Faith Wood-Blagrove as Modesty; and Colin Farrell (True Detective) as Graves.
David Yates returns to helm this new series. Yates directed the last four Potter films. Admittedly, I had hoped for a different director, just to see a change in style. However, Yates did a very good job bringing the last three HP books to life. Many others vital to Harry Potter‘s filmmaking crew are also returning. A press release confirms, “the film is being produced by David Heyman, producer of all eight of the blockbuster Harry Potter features; J.K. Rowling; Steve Kloves; and Lionel Wigram.” Collaborating with Yates behind the scenes is an Oscar-winning or Oscar-nominated crew, including director of photography Philippe Rousselot, production designer Stuart Craig, costume designer Colleen Atwood, visual effects supervisor Tim Burke, visual effects supervisor Christian Manz, and Yates’ longtime editor Mark Day, who edited the last four Harry Potter films.
Warner Bros. Pictures has slated Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them for worldwide release in 3D and IMAX on November 18, 2016.