This week, Warner Bros. announced spinoff films to JK Rowling’s popular “Harry Potter” series. Potter fans should be thrilled by the news, right?
Not so fast.
If you’re expecting, hoping, longing to see Harry, Ron, Hermione, and the rest of the Hogwarts crew reunite on screen, hold your breath.
The new films will be inspired by Rowling’s book “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.”
The book is far from an adventurous tale following a young protagonist. Actually, the short 42-page text isn’t much of a book at all.
Rather, “Fantastic Beasts” is an encyclopedia of — you guessed it — beasts filled with penned drawings and clever asides from Harry and Ron in the margins.
Diehard Potter fans will know it’s the book Harry carried around with him during his first year at wizarding school in the premiere novel.
You can check it out in its entirety HERE.
So, what will the new movie be about?
According to the release, the film won’t be a prequel or sequel. Instead, it will follow the adventures of the book’s fictitious author, Newt Scamander.
Wait. Who’s that?
He must be a relative of Harry, Ron, or maybe even Hagrid, right?
He’s just the author of a book published in 1927 that “can be found in most wizarding households.”
Essentially, he’s the Dante or Charles Darwin of the wizarding community.
So, what’s so special about this guy?
He must get into an epic fight with a wizard or have a long-standing feud with others. Maybe he came to a grisly death?
Sounds like he had a pretty boring, normal life.
According to the Harry Potter wiki, he was born in 1897 to a mum who raised hippogriffs (the beast we see Harry ride and mention throughout several books), attended Hogwarts, and was asked to write “Fantastic Beasts” in 1918.
The most interesting thing about this character is that he travelled to 100 countries to write his book over the course of nine years.
Clearly, he won’t be up against an antagonist the likes of Voldemort.
It seems pretty clear — unless Rowling rewrites the history of her fictional world — the series will follow Scamander’s adventures in finding the mythical beasts that he eventually writes about in his book.
While we may see shots of some cool mythical beasts and dragons, why should we be interested in seeing the crafting of an encyclopedia over the course of nine years on the big screen?
The spinoff book was a nice complement to the Harry Potter universe but it is really hard to say it could be anything more than that. After the series was over, the book gave fans background on the creatures Harry came across and some insight on the muggle world.
But that’s it.
As it currently stands, and barring some magic by Rowling, there’s been nothing in this announcement that screams to fans to get excited. It would be like getting excited for a Star Wars’ spinoff centered around some random character on Tatooine who was never shown in the movies.
What happened to Harry, Ron, and Hermione’s kids adventures at Hogwarts? Maybe that storyline will get picked up in the future, but for now you’ll have to settle for the young Charles Darwin of the Harry Potter world.
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