Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is taking Harry Potter fans to a new location in the Wizarding World, this time setting the action in Paris. The film is a sequel to Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, a story set in the Harry Potter universe years before the adventures of the young boy wizard and his friends. It instead focus on the adventures of famed magizoologist Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne). Both films are directed by David Yates with a screenplay by Harry Potter writer J.K. Rowling herself.
The Crimes of Grindelwald will introduce a young Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law) as he attempts to recruit Newt to help him fight his friend turned foe, the dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald (Johnny Depp). The film will delve not only into Dumbledore's backstory, but Newt's as well, with the appearance of his brother Theseus Scamander (Callum Turner) and the mysterious Leta Lestrange (Zoë Kravitz) whose relationship with Newt was teased in the first film. Newt will also be joined in his adventures by his companions from the previous film: Tina (Katherine Waterston), Queenie (Alison Sudol), and Jacob (Dan Fogler).
Along with new characters, The Crimes of Grindelwald brings new locations as well. Producer David Heyman told EW that the new film "almost entirely takes place in Paris." Paris has not been seen in the franchise before, with the first Fantastic Beasts film being set in New York City and the original Harry Potter books and films taking place in London. "We delve deeper into [J.K. Rowling’s] wizarding world — we’re in Paris, we’re in London and New York — the world is expanding,” Heyman explained.
This is exciting news for diehard Harry Potter fans. The books could only cover so much, now there is the chance to see the history of the wizarding world as well as how witches and wizards all over the world practice magic. There is a lot to explore regarding the treatment of magical people by those without powers and how that reflects the society of the time. One can only imagine that Paris will provide wizards and witches with a lot more freedom than what they had in 1920s America.
The sequel already seems promising with the ability to expand the wizarding world as we know it. The ability to connect franchises by showing events such as the famous duel between Dumbledore and Grindelwald could go a long way in making fans care as much about the new franchise as they do about the Harry Potter series. Combining characters fans already have a connection with like Dumbledore should help the film, despite the continued presence of Depp as the titular Grindelwald.
- Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald/Fantastic Beasts 2 (2018) release date: Nov 16, 2018