Warner Brothers released a fantastic beast of a cast photo for the second installment in the Fantastic Beasts franchise, officially titled ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’.
The photo gives quite a bit about what the film will be about, and we can anticipate at least two major story arcs. Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) is prominent in the picture, along with the three friends he met in the first film — newly reinstated MACUSA Auror with a fabulous new hairstyle Tina Goldstein (Katherine Waterston), her Legilimens sister Queenie (Alison Sudol), and the charming No-Maj Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler). Jacob had his memory erased at the end of the last film, but a final scene suggested that perhaps it was not all gone after all, and his romance with Queenie may just survive. It will be really fun to see what kind of a role a No-Maj will play in the story as it grows progressively darker with tension rising towards the showdown between Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law) and dark wizard Gelert Grindelwald (Johnny Depp) — who has the Elder Wand!
Ezra Miller’s Credence also appears in this picture, which means that despite being possessed by the dark Obscurus power and destroyed by MACUSA, he will make a triumphant return in this movie. He looks considerably better, and we all want more Ezra Miller so I am really excited for this role in particular because we knew virtually nothing about Credence before, and now he’s totally transformed. I will be really interested to see how they bring him back and how they explain what happened to him.
Draped on Credence’s arm is the beautiful and mysterious Maledictus, played by Claudia Kim. According to Pottermore, Maledictus is the carrier of a blood curse which destines her to ultimately become a beast. Just as Credence was the key to the plot of the first movie, I think that Maledictus will be the key to this one. This also makes Newt’s connection a bit clearer, as he will probably save her in a similar fashion to the way he saved Credence. Or JK Rowling will surprise us all once again by doing something completely different and brilliant. I’ll be happy either way.
We also get the addition of Zoe Kravitz and Callum Turner as the duo to likely be Newt’s emotional demise. Kravitz was seen very briefly in Fantastic Beasts. Newt carried a picture of Kravitz’s character Leta Lestrange in his case, and it seemed to imply some sort of romantic involvement. Turner plays Newt’s brother Theseus, head of the Auror Office of the Ministry of Magic and fiance to Leta Lestrange. There will undoubtedly be conflict between Newt and Theseus, with Leta at the center of it (and based on my knowledge of the Lestrange family I’m prepared to believe it’s going to be ugly). This is exciting because it means we’re really going to explore the emotional range of Newt Scamander, and that is worth a whole movie in itself.
But of course the major plot in this movie will be about Grindelwald, his rise to power, and the First Wizarding War. The framing and execution of this narrative will be really fun because we already know how all of this ends, and that means the creative team has to work extra hard to make it interesting, and I have complete faith in them.
Additionally, we know that this film takes place just months after the last one — still the 20s! Bring on more awesome costumes! — but rather than just New York City, The Crimes of Grindelwald will take our heroes to Paris and London as well, though an earlier photo of Newt’s denied travel application suggests that there may be some complications here. But anyways, the scenery was stunning in the first one so I’m really excited to see these creators capture the beauty of these two other world famous cities.
I’m SUPER EXCITED for the next installment of this magical adventure, and with each new detail I grow more and more confident that this film will be bigger and better than the first one.
Tell Us: What are you most excited to see in The Crimes of Grindelwald?