by Graham Pierrepoint
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them has proven to be a success on three accounts this fall, with fans and critics giving wide approval and box office figures still coming in strong. It’s a movie that may not measure up to the best of the Harry Potter franchise (we reviewed the film with a positive four stars out of five), but it has done well to stand alone as an alternative look on the world of wizarding that made JK Rowling a household name and beloved author for a generation of readers. While the first movie centered around zoologically-minded wizard Newt Scamander, played by Eddie Redmayne, the movie’s producer has asserted that future movies in the franchise will latch on to different characters entirely.
Producer David Heyman advised that the next movie in line will likely focus on completely different characters – but will still provide insight into the lives of those who made up the main cast in Fantastic Beasts’ maiden outing. Speaking to Cinema Blend (warning – the source may contain plot spoilers), Heyman revealed that Fantastic Beasts 2 could well revolve around young Albus Dumbledore, thus providing a more solid connection with the Harry Potter stories that have preceded it on screen. It is interesting, therefore, that focus may well be shifting from one group of characters that we have gotten to know in the first movie, onto further personalities – some of whom we actually meet, albeit briefly, in Fantastic Beasts.
Rumor also states that the next movie will be set considerable time after the first, plunging the world of wizarding into the 1940s, meaning that we could gain an insight into how wizarding was affected during wartime – but such details have not yet been made fully apparent. It’s certainly building up to be a franchise with much opportunity and inspiration – and likely one that big fans of Harry Potter and the wizarding universe will continue to follow.
Rowling herself has stated that there may be as many as five Fantastic Beasts movies planned overall, and it certainly seems that the author is keen to continue expanding her fictional universe – while Harry’s adventures at school may have finished in the Deathly Hallows, he’s been seen on stage with his son in future installment The Cursed Child, which has sold out throughout the West End. Will the Potter legacy ever end? While Rowling is around, it’s highly unlikely!