Fans of the Harry Potter series who were looking forward to three Fantastic Beasts movies, rejoice as word has come in that it will actually be a five-part film series! The news broke during the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them IMAX fan event, and then repeated on the films official Twitter account:
— Fantastic Beasts (@FantasticBeasts) October 13, 2016
J.K. Rowling herself then tweeted that she was putting the final touches on the second screenplay.
I’m the screenwriter. Currently putting the finishing touches to the second one. https://t.co/smffkQ42GZ
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) October 13, 2016
Rowling also confirmed that each of the films will take part in a different city. If you’re wondering how magical beasts can support a five-part series of movies, check out the following video, which was what was shown at the IMAX fan event and then my analysis. Warning: possible spoilers to follow the video!
The thing the trailers and this featurette seem to be touching on are the characters of Dumbledore and Grindelwald. This is a huge backstory for the Harry Potter universe as both had an interest in finding the Deathly Hallows and were instrumental in the International Statute of Secrecy. Grindelwald ended up being the dark lord who waged the first wizarding war which ended in 1945. When asked whether the characters appear in the upcoming film, director David Yates said:
“We can’t tell you too because we’d have to kill you all, but we do mention Dumbledore and he features in a wonderful scene between Colin [Farrell] and Eddie [Redmayne]. Grindelwald does feature in the background and is going to become a much more prominent feature moving forward.”
Basically, this will be the story of Dumbledore and Grindelwald and the Wizarding War which was mentioned in the Harry Potter books and film. I suspect that each film will take place about four or five years between each instalment. It should be noted that Michael Gambon appeared in flashbacks as Dumbledore so he may be reprising the role.
There’s more though, Fantastic Beasts and where to find them takes place in 1926, and I’ve wondered why that year. Then it hit me: Tom Riddle (who becomes Lord Voldemort) was born on New Year’s Eve 1926, and went to Hogwarts between the years of 1938 and 1945. Curious how all those dates line up isn’t it? My best guess is that this series of films will be both about the fall of Grindelwald, and the rise of Voldemort.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them will open on Nov. 18, while the sequel is slated for Nov. 18, 2018.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them opens in 1926 as Newt Scamander has just completed a global excursion to find and document an extraordinary array of magical creatures. Arriving in New York for a brief stopover, he might have come and gone without incident…were it not for a No-Maj (American for Muggle) named Jacob, a misplaced magical case, and the escape of some of Newt’s fantastic beasts, which could spell trouble for both the wizarding and No-Maj worlds.