Though late October predictions had this Harry Potter prequel not quite reaching the original franchise’s box office waterline, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is still standing on the shoulders of cinematic giants, thanks to its more famous relation and the participation of one of Hollywood’s hottest actors, Eddie Redmayne.
- Who’s in it and what’s it about? -
Eddie Redmayne, an Oscar winner for The Theory of Everything in 2014 and an Oscar nominee in 2015 for The Danish Girl, makes this Harry Potter hybrid spin-off and prequel, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, his major (and only) outing in 2016: He leads as Newt Scamander, a creature collector freshly arrived in 1920s New York.
Connected to Harry Potter by virtue of the fact that they both attended Hogwarts School, albeit three generations apart, Newt finds himself in serious trouble when some of his magical beasts escape, attracting attention from various factions within the wizarding world as well as New York’s ordinary human population.
Katherine Waterstone of Steve Jobs, Dan Fogler of Secrets and Lies and Alison Sudol of Transparent provide back-up as Newt’s inadvertent allies -- Tina, Jacob, and Tina’s sister Queenie -- while Carmen Ejogo, Colin Farrell, Ezra Miller, Samantha Morton, Ron Perlman and Jon Voight are among supports, and Johnny Depp and Zoë Kravitz, who will star in a 2018 sequel, are also expected to appear.
- Who’s behind it? -
Harry Potter creator and series author JK Rowling wrote the script, based on her 2001 book of the same name, while David Yates, who directed the last four of eight Potter films, returns as well (as does his regular film editor Mark Day.)
- When’s it out? -
Following a world premiere in New York City on November 10, much of the Fantastic Beasts opening has been set for the week of November 16. That’s the day it releases in France and Belgium as well as Indonesia, South Korea, and a few other territories.
Australia and New Zealand, Argentina, Brazil and Chile, Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands, and Italy, the Philippines, Malaysia, Singapore and Russia join from November 17, with the US and Canada, the UK and Ireland, India and Vietnam among those debuting Fantastic Beasts on the 18th.
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