NEWT SCAMANDER RETURNS IN FANTASTIC BEASTS: THE SECRETS OF DUMBLEDORE
The next part of magizoologist Newt Scamander's journey starts now — in Hogwarts.
Newt Scamander returns to the big screen to lead a band of wizards and witches in defending the world and unravel secrets to stop the darkness.
"Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore" is the third installment in the Fantastic Beasts franchise and the eleventh film overall in the Wizarding World franchise. It was initially planned to become a trilogy, and then author J.K. Rowling revealed the franchise would comprise five films instead, taking place between 1926 and 1945.
The film is set several years after the events of the previous movie, "Fantastic Beast: Crimes of Grindelwald", in the 1930s. More magical communities will be explored in the film, including those in Bhutan, Germany, and China.
The story starts with Albus Dumbledore handing a task to Newt Scamander and his team that will require them to enter the heart of Gellert Grindelwald's army. At the same time, it will lead Dumbledore to start weighing on his choices of staying on the sidelines as war approaches.
Some familiar faces will return to reprise their role from the previous films, such as Eddie Redmayne (Newt Scamander), Jude Law (Albus Dumbledore), Katherine Waterston (Tina Goldstein), Alison Sudol (Queenie Goldstein), Dan Fogler (Jacob Kowalski), and Callum Turner (Theseus Scamander).
As a teaser, the film's first official poster was released on December 21, keeping everyone on their toes with the reveal of Dumbledore's long-time companion and defender, Fawkes.
Fawkes is a phoenix whose feathers made up the core of Harry Potter's and Lord Voldemort's twin wands. It also saved Harry's life in the franchise's second installment, "Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets".
It also shows Jacob Kowalski, a No-Maj (or muggle), wielding a wand. As explained by Rowling, muggles (or ordinary humans) are unable to wield wands as they channel magic.
"I have been asked what would happen if a muggle picked up a magic wand in my world. And the answer would probably be something accidental... possibly quite violent," said Rowling in an interview back in 2006. She explained that the wand is "a vessel" that tends to have highly unpredictable effects, possibly harming him and those around him.
If so, then Kowalski wielding the wand might not be the best idea. Speculations regarding how the story will turn out for him started to float, with some worrying at a dark turn for the character.
Shrouded in controversy
The third installment to this Harry Potter prequel had faced multiple issues while in development.
The role of Gellert Grindelwald was played by Johnny Depp in the first two films, "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them" (2016) and "Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald" (2018). However, after losing his High Court libel case against the allegations of abusing his ex-wife Amber Heard, the actor was forced to step down.
In November 2020, Warner Bros announced that Mads Mikkelsen was cast to take on the role. The Hannibal actor later said that he wouldn't reproduce the original performance but still similarly portray the character.
"There has to be a bridge between what Johnny did and what I'm going to do. And at the same time, I also have to make it my own," Mikkelsen told Entertainment Weekly back in November 2020.
Meanwhile, Rowling has been under fire due to multiple offensive and transphobic tweets. She has continued to insist that she is not transphobic, albeit being vocally supportive of anti-trans views.
The recently released trailer shows the upcoming film distances itself from the author, as her name is only mentioned in almost illegibly small writing at the very end, unlike the trailers of the first two films.
Despite that, fans still look forward to the release of the new film, placing it on Time's Most Anticipated Movies of 2022.
Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore is set for release on April 8, 2022, in the UK and April 15, 2022, in the U.S.
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