By Lindsey Sabado
After reading “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child,” I was pissed.
The characters I loved so much in the original series (except Ron, I always hated Ron) crumble in “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.” Harry is a bad father and Hermione is a worse Minister of Magic. I wanted so much more for their futures than what J.K. Rowling and writers gave them.
When I shut the book, I angrily shut the door on Rowling and tried to pretend like the script was bad fan-fiction and not actually canon. But then, the “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” film came and swept me back into Rowling’s world of wonder. Newt Scamander’s story touched the edges of the “Harry Potter” series but didn’t take anything away from it like “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” had. The story stood on its own and Jacob’s jump into Newt’s suitcase gave us a deeper look into the realm of mythical creatures than the original seven books or movies ever had.
The sequel, however, won’t be as independent as the first Scamander-central movie. With the introduction of Johnny Depp, Hollywood’s most famous (and dare I say overused) madman, as Grindelwald at the end of “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” we’re reminded that it all ties into Dumbledore’s story, and by extension Harry’s.
Until “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” premieres in November, only Rowling and crew know just how much the “Fantastic Beasts” series will entangle with the story told in the original series. But what we do know is that Dumbledore’s reputation is at stake. Will the “Fantastic Beasts” sequel finally show us the dark past of the beloved Hogwarts headmaster?
Today, Warner Bros. gave us the third and final trailer for “The Crimes on Grindelwald.” Based on what we’ve seen in the trailers, here’s what we know so far:
We’re going to Paris, but more importantly, back to Hogwarts.
In the trailers, we see a young Newt in the same classroom where Harry, Hermione, and Ron learned Defense Against the Dark Arts. This time, the seemingly cursed teaching position is held by none other than Dumbledore.
It doesn’t look like Hogwarts will be a major location throughout the film, but the enchanting castle does get some screen time in this prequel. While much looks the same as in previous films- there is one intriguing difference. In the trailer, we see wizards apparate onto the bridge at Hogwarts which in the “Harry Potter” series, no witch or wizard could do.
We’ll see some new faces- some are characters we’ve never heard of, others only mentioned in the the original series or “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.”
-As alluded to in the first film of the “Fantastic Beasts” series, Newt and his brother Theseus clearly have bad blood between them. At the center of this torn relationship is Leta Lestrange who Newt mysteriously wallows over in the first movie. Of course, she’s a Lestrange so that spells trouble, but for a brief moment in the first trailer we see Newt, Tina, and Leta either working together or running together from the same thing. At the end, Leta ominously says, “You’re too good Newt. You never met a monster you couldn’t love.”
-This just in, NAGINI WAS A WOMAN. In the trailer, we see a character portrayed by Claudia Kim as some type of circus performer. Suddenly, the woman transforms into a large snake- none other than Nagini, Voldemort’s loyal sidekick and horcrux who was decapitated by Neville in the Battle of Hogwarts. On Twitter, Rowling confirmed that Kim’s character is in fact Nagini. Like Draco’s mother, the character has a blood curse which, according to Rowling, is passed down from mother to daughter. Different than animagus, Nagini is what’s called a Maledictus.
-At the end of the second trailer, Nicolas Flamel, creator of the Sorcerer’s Stone, makes an appearance.
Somehow, Credence is alive and well.
At the end of “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” the aurors seem to destroy the Obscurus and its host along with it. The black mass explodes into nothingness and Credence is gone.Though the first film teased that the Obscurus may still linger, it wasn’t until the “Crimes of Grindelwald” trailers aired that we knew Credence survived the encounter.In the trailers, Credence seems to have taken a liking to Claudia Kim’s character, aka Nagini. The Obscurus may be gone (or is it?), but Credence clearly remains a powerful wizard with some unresolved issues.
For some reason, Dumbledore can’t do anything about Grindelwald.
Like all other prequels, we’ll go into “The Crimes of Grindelwald” already knowing how things end. Unless Rowling pulls some time travel crap on us (again), Grindelwald’s fate is sealed: Dumbledore will defeat him in a duel in 1945 and years later Voldemort will visit him in prison in search of the Elder Wand. (Speaking of the Elder Wand, we know that Grindelwald obtains this piece of the Deathly Hallows early in his rise to power. In the trailers for the upcoming film, Grindelwald already has it.)Ultimately, Dumbledore must bring down Grindelwald. But based on these three trailers, we know that’s still a long way down the road. For one reason or another, Dumbledore can’t do anything about the dark wizard for now.“I can’t move against Grindelwald,” he says to Newt. “It has to be you.”
In this movie, we’ll likely see only glimpses into Dumbledore and Grindelwald’s relationship. I’m guessing that the two won’t interact face-to-face.
Whatever happened between Dumbledore and Grindelwald, the trailers for “The Crimes of Grindelwald” make me think that we still won’t find out- at least not in this movie.In the trailers, we only see the two powerful wizards interacting in some form of flashbacks or apparitions. Dumbledore looks into the Mirror of Erised and first sees a younger version of Grindelwald and then Johnny Depp’s version of the character. From “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone,” we know that the mirror reflects the deepest desire of whoever looks into the glass.
Years ago, Rowling confirmed that Dumbledore was gay and had fallen in love with Grindelwald. In January, the screenwriter said that “The Crimes of Grindelwald” won’t explicitly address Dumbledore’s sexuality. If this movie actually revealed the whole Dumbledore/Grindelwald backstory, I think the romantic aspect would have to be somehow self-evident.
Since the trailers never show Dumbledore and Grindelwald together and Newt “has” to be the one to go after the villain, it’s likely the two won’t interact in this film at all. And that makes sense looking at the movie in its context. “The Crimes of Grindelwald” is only the second film in a series of five and it takes place in the late 1920s; we know from the original Harry Potter series that Dumbledore doesn’t defeat Grindelwald until 1945. A lot of time has to pass before the childhood friends’ final battle, and who knows, that may not happen until the fifth movie.
Whatever Rowling has up her sleeve, the “Crimes of Grindelwald” trailers have me impatiently hooked. The movie hits the big screen on Nov. 16. Until then, I’ll be here researching fan theories and hoping the sequel won’t let me down like the cursed “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child.”