On Edge: Anticipating Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

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A new trailer for the second instalment of the Fantastic Beasts was debuted at San Diego Comic Con over the summer, and there is plenty of material for Potterheads to get stuck into in these three minutes alone. Whereas the first film felt like a fun and gentle introduction to the series, this sequel seems to be a lot darker, and it includes many references to the Harry Potter series, which is very exciting indeed. Magizoologist Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) and his creatures are back, but they appear to have some serious world-saving to do.

Right off the bat, we see a young Newt (Joshua Shea) being taught Defence Against the Dark Arts by none other than Professor Dumbledore (Jude Law). This is intriguing for several reasons. Firstly, we know from the Harry Potter books that Dumbledore taught Transfiguration before becoming Headmaster of Hogwarts: is there a significant reason behind J.K. Rowling (who wrote the screenplay for both this film and its predecessor) making this decision? Secondly, we see the students in Dumbledore’s class learning how to cast ‘Riddikulus!’ against boggarts, reminiscent of Remus Lupin’s class in Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban; from this, we find out that Newt’s biggest fear is working in an office. Finally (and most importantly), we’re back at Hogwarts! Personally, seeing the students lead their daily lives in Hogwarts was my favourite thing about the Harry Potter books and films, and I am so excited to see that we are returning back after so many years. How much we’ll see of this past Hogwarts is unclear, but I can’t wait to see more of everyone’s favourite magical castle.

Following this, there are many other points of interest within this trailer. We can see that Credence (Ezra Miller), a now-known Obscurus, is back and causing havoc once again, though whether this is in New York like the first film or in this film’s new location of Paris is unclear; certainly, the buildings in the background have a Parisian look about them. This time, he appears to be accompanied by a ‘Maledictus’ (Claudia Kim). According to Pottermore, a Maledictus is a witch or wizard afflicted by a blood curse which transforms them into an animal, though they are different from Animagi, who transform out of choice. The question is who is this witch and what does she plan to use Credence for, if anything? As well as these two, we finally see Leta LeStrange (Zoë Cravitz), who we know from the first film was once a love interest of Newt’s, as well as having a very famous surname. It will be very interesting to see what her role in the film is, as well as how much she resembles her descendants in nature. In addition to some new faces, we also see the return of Newt’s current love interest, Tina Goldstein (Katherine Waterston) and lovable baker Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler), and of course the eponymous villain Gellert Grindelwald (Johnny Depp), whom Newt seemingly has to face alone, according to Dumbledore. It appears that Depp will have a lot more screen-time in this if the trailer is anything to go by. Perhaps most excitingly of all, though, at the very end of the trailer we see none other than Nicolas Flamel (Brontis Jodorowsky), the famous alchemist behind the Philosopher’s Stone. Immortal under the influence of the stone, he looks exceedingly aged and frail, with Jacob quipping that he doesn’t look a day over 375. His role in this is definitely one to eagerly anticipate.

There are so many aspects of this trailer I could pick apart, as The Crimes of Grindelwald looks to be not only a great sequel to the first Fantastic Beasts, but also packed full of more Harry Potter lore to dig our teeth into. And let’s be honest, it’s worth seeing for more adorable Niffler action alone.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, directed by David Yates, will be released in the UK on the 16th November. Watch the trailer from Comic-Con below:

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Literature Executive 2018/19. Third year English and History student. Lover of Hobbits, theatre and tea.

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