Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them — which opens in theaters next week– was initially announced as the first film in what would eventually become a trilogy, but will now be the starting point of something much bigger. Last month, J. K. Rowling and Warner Bros. revealed that the series will actually consist of five movies rather than three and it’s expected that it will explore the events leading up to the duel between Albus Dumbledore and Gellert Grindelwald, who will be played by Johnny Depp.
The infamous duel between the two wizards took place in 1945, but the first Fantastic Beasts film is set in 1926, meaning that the entire series would have to take place over a period of 19 years to get to that point. Speaking at the premiere of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them last night, Rowling confirmed that this will indeed be the case:
Originally, to tell you the truth, we said a trilogy as a placeholder. We wanted to be honest with people that it was going to be more than one movie, but we were feeling our way. Then, there came a point in the drafting of our story where I said to David [Yates], ‘You know, this feels like five movies, and I think I’m pretty certain about that.’ It’s ambitious to tell it in five to be honest because we’re spanning 19 years, but I can see an arc to five – so that’s how it happened. It came out of the material.
It’s also worth noting that 1926 was the year Tom Riddle, a.k.a. Voldemort was born. What’s even more interesting is that the dark wizard graduated from Hogwarts in 1945. This means that there’s a decent chance that we could see Voldemort’s early years at the famed wizarding school, as well as his research into Horcruxes.
What we currently do know about the rest of the series is that next four Fantastic Beasts films will be written by Rowling and directed by David Yates. The second one will see Newt Scamander (played by Eddie Redmayne) journey to Paris and introduce us to a young version of Dumbledore, who has yet to be cast.
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