Fantastic Beasts fans will be able to see the third part, "The Secrets of Dumbledore" in theaters here on April 15. In our latest Original, we talk about the plot, cast and production as well as everything else you need to know about the upcoming movie.
First, let's get to the plot of "Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore". At this point, there is a risk of spoilers for the first two parts, as well we will of course also briefly discuss the events in these movies.
At the center of the "Fantastic Beasts" series is, of course, still Newt Scamander, the British magizoologist. In the first installment, we see Newt arrive in New York City in 1926 with his suitcase. In it are all sorts of animals he was able to find on his journey, including a Niffler and his Bowtruckles. One quickly notices that the mood in the city is very tense, as more and more prejudice and hostility from the population builds up against the magical society operating in secret. Things get even worse when Muggle Jacob Kowalski accidentally opens Newt's suitcase, which is why some of the animals escape. Thus, he ensures that chaos takes its course. When they try to recapture the animals together with two witch sisters, they have to face dangerous opponents.
The plot of the second part follows more or less directly from the first, but, as the title already reveals, takes care of the villain Gellert Grindelwald. The dark wizard's ambitious goal is to control the Muggles through pureblood wizards. His plans quickly become serious when Grindelwald, with the help of Abernathy, escapes during a prisoner transfer and quickly gathers a considerable number of followers around him. Newt is eventually contacted by Albus Dumbledore and asked to take up the cause and foil Grindelwald's plans in Paris.
The second part did not really cause much enthusiasm among the fan community and, apart from a convincing performance by Johnny Depp, will definitely not go down in the annals of the movie history. In contrast to the first part, which was mostly received positively, many seem to see a downgrade in "Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald". Warner Bros. and the team responsible therefore seem to be doing everything they can to make the third part more elaborate and epic. Fittingly, former Warner boss Kevin Tsujihara also commented in an interview with the Los Angeles Times in 2019, where he clarified that the second part did not do as well as the first, and that everything must be done to make the third movie even better than the first.
But can you even guess what J.K. Rowling and her support Steve Kloves have put down on paper in all that time? By the way, Kloves was also involved in writing the screenplays for all the "Harry Potter" movies except "Order of the Phoenix".
In fact, there are no exact details about the story yet, it seems only this much is clear: The story of Newt will not end after the third part. It has always been clear that the movie series will consist of five parts, at the end of which the big showdown between Albus Dumbledore and his former friend Gellert Grindelwald will take place in 1945. Accordingly, "Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore" would be the exact middle of the story arc, and as we already know from a 2018 tweet from Rowling, the journey in the upcoming movie even goes to far away Rio De Janeiro. For knowledgeable "Harry Potter" fans, this of course rings a bell, after all, the magical school Castelbruxo is also located in Brazil, which could accordingly be illuminated in greater detail. Dumbledore, as the title suggests, is also to move more into focus. His role as a wise principal and mentor, which is present in the "Harry Potter" series, especially in the first six movies, is already questioned somewhat in Fantastic Beasts 2. So we can expect to learn more about Dumbledore's dark side in the upcoming installment as well. Actor Jude Law also confirmed a facet of the wizard in an interview with Cinema Blend. According to this, he feels a certain affection towards Newt because he takes care of various beasts and Albus thinks of himself as a beast who has done dark things. We are definitely curious to see whether Jude Law can convincingly portray Dumbledore's character in the third part.
The cast of "Fantastic Beasts 3" is definitely worth seeing. Besides main actor Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander, there are some old and new characters to see. These are shown particularly vividly by the "Fantastic Beasts" Twitter channel, as it has published some pictures of the actors in the course of the second trailer. Included, for example, are Ezra Miller as Credence Barebone, Jude Law as Albus Dumbledore, Katherine Waterston as Tina Goldstein, Alison Sudol as Queenie Goldstein, Callum Turner as Theseus Scamander and Dan Fogler as Jacob Kowalski. The most controversial personnel by far is, of course, the casting of Mads Mikkelsen as the villain Gellert Grindelwald. The dark wizard was embodied by Johnny Depp in Parts 1 & 2 and suspended by Warner Bros. for the planned filming of the third part in the course of his court case against Amber Heard. Warner Bros. feared bad coverage if they held on to Depp and preferred to pay him the contractually guaranteed $16 million fee instead of continuing to plan with him. It was quickly decided that Mads Mikkelsen would take Depp's place. Many fans agree that this was an equally successful casting, but they would have liked to see a fairer approach to Johnny Depp and his ex-wife Amber Heard. Either way, the demands on Mads Mikkelsen's Grindelwald will be enormous, but the 56-year-old Dane was surely aware of that beforehand.
The filming of "Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore" turned out to be extremely difficult. After they were supposed to begin in summer 2019, they were postponed until February 2020, when the pandemic threw a spanner in the works. After further cancellations in the meantime, filming was not finally completed until May 2021. Behind the scenes, director David Yates is responsible, who has already celebrated great success with his staging not only of "Fantastic Beasts" but also of "Harry Potter". But he was also provided with an impeccable template by J.K. Rowling, because the bestselling author was in charge of writing the screenplay. In addition to Rowling, David Heyman is also responsible for the production. The 60-year-old is one of the leading minds behind the Wizarding World and has co-produced all eight "Harry Potter" movies as well as the two "Fantastic Beasts" parts. So Warner Bros. is going with the tried and true here, which should certainly please fans.
Finally, we briefly analyze the two trailers that have been released so far. The very first teaser was followed by the first real trailer in December 2021, shortly before the 20th anniversary of "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone". We see many familiar characters such as Jacob, Yusuf, Albus' brother Aberforth, the teacher Lally Hicks and of course Newt. For a change, we also see places outside of Great Britain, such as Grindelwald's fortress Nurmengard in Austria, as well as Rio de Janeiro and China, as you can guess from the Portuguese and Chinese banners in the trailer. In addition, Newt will return to New York, and it is believed that Dumbledore and Credence will duel in Nazi Germany in the 1930s and 1940s. Attentive viewers will also have noticed various allusions to the "Harry Potter" movie series, after all, the trailer begins directly with a snitch above Hogwarts' rooftops.
The second trailer was released at the end of February and shows even more from the finished movie. Here, the two opposing factions of Grindelwald and Dumbledore are in the foreground. On Grindelwald's side, these are mainly mind-reader Queenie and Credence, who, as we know, developed into an Obscurial. Since direct confrontation is not an option for Albus due to the Blood Oath revealed in Part 2, he too has various comrades-in-arms for the fight against his old "Dumbledore's First Army" as it is called in a tweet from Wizarding World on February 22, consists of Newt, his friend Jacob, as well as Professor Lally and Newt's assistant Bunty.
That's it again with our new Original. We hope you are now well prepared: "Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore" will be released in US movie theaters on April 15, 2022.