Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them – Harry Potter spin-off film announced!

Warner Bros. and J.K. Rowling have thrown a bit of a curve ball at the wizarding world – though those who know anything about how much money this franchise made will not be shocked – and announced that a 9th Harry Potter film will be produced. Set in the expanded wizarding universe, the film will be set some 70 years before Harry Potter’s story, and part of it at least will take place in New York.

As I considered Warners’ proposal, an idea took shape that I couldn’t dislodge. That is how I ended up pitching my own idea for a film to Warner Bros. Although it will be set in the worldwide community of witches and wizards where I was so happy for 17 years, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is neither a prequel nor a sequel to the Harry Potter series, but an extension of the wizarding world. The laws and customs of the hidden magical society will be familiar to anyone who has read the Harry Potter books or seen the films, but Newt’s story will start in New York, 70 years before Harry’s gets underway.

The fact that Rowling has not only given the project her blessing, but will actually be making this her first ever screenplay bodes well for the project. Though technically aimed at kids, I think the Harry Potter franchise has a big love in an adult audience too. Shaking the locations and characters up too will definitely help freshen the experience. I like the idea of seeing other parts of the wizarding world, not just education for young witches and wizards. More of the adult side of things, particularly if it’s set in New York in the 30’s/40’s could be very interesting.

The film will of course be based on the textbook used by Harry at Hogwarts, and whilst this seems like a thin plot, the tale seems like it will actually be about the author and him writing the book, as opposed to actually about the text itself. I just hope they don’t go too ‘kid-friendly’ like Peter Jackson did with his adaption of The Hobbit, which was sorely lacking in any tangible enjoyment for adults.

No news yet on when Warner Bros. plan to release the new film, but I can imagine fans will be clamouring for this. Who knows, maybe one day we’ll get another Harry Potter book!

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