Longtime ‘Harry Potter’ Director David Yates Will Direct All Five ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Films


David Yates isn’t leaving the Wizarding World anytime soon.

He plans to stick around and direct the entire Harry Potter prequel series, which recently expanded from a trilogy to five films and begins with next weekend’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Theminformed THR at Thursday’s world premiere of the news, saying despite the huge commitment, he was enthusiastic and only looked at it “movie to movie.”

“I love making films, and I’ve got a great team, all of whom are like family.”

He previously helmed the last four entries in the series proper, making him the purveyor of childhood imaginations the world over for the past decade, with this news setting him up for another. Fortunately, Potter creator and mastermind J.K. Rowling is along for the ride, returning to script the remaining four films. Her first script for Fantastic Beasts was the result of three drafts by Rowling, with input from Yates, Steve  Kloves, screenwriter on the original Potter films, and longtime producer David Heyman.

The beloved author is currently “putting the finishing touches” on the Paris-set sequel, which is in currently in pre-production in England and France ahead of a Nov. 18, 2018 release. The film will introduce a young Albus Dumbledore, played by Richard Harris and Michael Gambon in the original series (check out our picks for the role here), and focus on the rise of Gellert Grindelwald (Johnny Depp, who will cameo in the first film), the most powerful dark wizard who lived prior to Voldemort (and Dumbledore’s former best friend and love interest).

Yates said the untitled sequel feels quite different than the first film, describing it as “haunting” and dreamlike and commended Rowling for shaking up her formula.

“The first draft was quite whimsical and lyrical, but it felt it didn’t have any heft and we weren’t sure what it was about,” recalled Yates. “Then Joe took a left turn and it was right up my street: it was really intense and dark. Joe and I loved it, but David Heyman and Steve Kloves very wisely said, ‘Whoa, hang on guys, this needs to get some of the lightness back.’ It was after that dark second draft that Joe suddenly found the melody; then, she was away to the races. It was a struggle to keep up with her because she knew what it was: a balance between light and shade.”

Rowling herself added

“I’m never complacent — I’m always feeling like I gotta do my best work, and I’m always pretty hard on myself. We’ve set ourselves an ambitious story to tell in five movies, but it’s going to be challenging and exciting — all the things I like.”

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them kicks off the prequel series a week from day

Source: THR

Sam Flynn

Sam Flynn

Sam is a writer and journalist whose passion for pop culture burns with the fire of a thousand suns and at least three LED lamps.

  • Steve Steve

    There’s a recipe for disaster. He made one good HP film and repeated it three more times. WB are the kings of bland franchises right now.

    Maybe “Fantastic Beasts” will be good (and I am looking forward to it), but the idea of one guy directing NINE films in the same franchise is ludicrous.

    • bingeit 45

      no all movies he made were pretty good, don’t take your opinion as fact, if this movie sucks, change him but otherwise there is no need, he understands the world and i’m perfectly happy if he keep delivering

      • Steve Steve

        The “pretty good” mantra is not inspiring. The HP world is vast and varied, which would lend itself to many visions and many variations. Stallone managed to successfully repeat his Rocky movie five times, but that was one character and a simple world. There will not be any innovation or creativity if every movie has the same creative team.

        I’m sure there are enough Potter fans to keep a new franchise afloat for 3-5 films. I suppose I’ll just have to settle for whatever “meh” films WB produces.

        Also, the *fact* is; you need to learn the difference between periods and commas.

        • bingeit 45

          firstly i disagree on rocky franchise, first 2 were good rest were mediocre and repetitive (i liked 6th one). Yates’s HP movies were far superior than rocky 3,4 and 5 (you may disagree but for me they were). Again all HP movies Yates directed were very good and if he maintains that quality there is absolutely no reason to replace him especially if he’s willing and not feel burdened.
          From the article it’s clear that they are working as a team and keeping one another in balance. From the few tweets i read, it seems like they have managed to make a good movie and if that is the case there is no need to replace anyone and trust their vision cause replacing the creative team can also be negative.
          Again i will say for the 100th time that i will have no problem if they change the director or writer if the movie sucks

          • Steve Steve

            Not all the HP movies Yates directed are not “very good.” HP five was the one that was very good, HP 6 was poor, HP 7a was poor, but suffered from the “part 1” narrative problems, and HP 7b was good, but really just benefited from being the conclusion to a decade-long franchise. Yates added freshness to the franchise when he did HP five, but didn’t do anything new in his next three films.

            WB treated those final three movies like they were on a factory assembly line and the strength of the actors, stories, and franchise carried them to success. Yates deserves credit only for finishing the films on time, not for making them successful.

            A better comparison than Rocky, would be Transformers. Four (soon to be five) gigantic successes at the BO, but only the first one had merit beyond the CGI battles. Michael Bay had nothing new to add to the franchise after the first film, just as Yates had nothing new to add to HP after his first film.

            Fantastic Beasts may be very good (I hope it is), but that does not mean the same director should do all four sequels. It makes sense from a business perspective, but not from a creative perspective.

            I have the same worries for Avengers 3 & 4, being done by the same creative team from Winter Soldier and Civil War. It is a bit different as the Avengers story and world is massive and cosmic, whereas Captain America movies are smaller and more personal. I definitely do not want the Russos to do any more Marvel movies for a while after Avenger 4.

  • sam7447

    He directed all the HP that I don’t like so I’m disappointed. I think the series was better on it’s first years, because 3 different directors outta 4 movies insufflated a fresh air to the franchise with every new release.

    Yates is a bland director, to be honest. His movies all look the same.