Muggles, rejoice! Just when you thought Harry Potter was archived forever, our beloved imaginary universe is back! J. K. Rowling, the mastermind behind the most incredible fantasy world ever fictionalized, is bringing the magic back in the form of an original screenplay. Before you get too emotional Potterheads, this is NOT a prequel, sequel, or any kind of continuation of the lives of Harry, Ron, and Hermione. It is, however, a revisitation of the same wizarding world we grew to love over the past decade.
On September 12, 2013 Rowling officially announced the confirmation of rumors that she would be writing her first original screenplay. The movie is based off the adventures and life of Magizoologist, Newt Scamander. His most noted work is a textbook from the Hogwarts library, “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” For you diehard fans out there, you’ll recognize this title as required reading for first years at Hogwarts and as one of two collector’s books that came out, in the real muggle world, in 2001. Rowling has long since developed the life and history of Scamander so the screenplay is an exciting development of rich existing material.
Here are some fun facts that we know about Newt Scamander, which help paint a picture for what this series could be like:
1. The story begins in New York City, 70 years prior to Potter’s world. This promises outstanding potential for the Potterverse to finally be Americanized a little bit. Who wants to audition with me?
2. Scamander worked on the textbook for nine years, traveling and collecting data about every breed of “fantastic” beast he could find.
3. His grandson, Rolf, married beloved Potter character, Luna Lovegood.
4. He served as a headmaster of Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. So he earns instant mad respect.
5. Newt participated in extensive Dragon research, including work with the Dragon Restraint Bureau. The topic of dragons alone could be an entire installment in the series. Move over Mother of Dragons!
6. The research was conducted in five different continents. Get excited for some wildly exotic locations – even by wizarding standards.
7. Newt was a member of the Hufflepuff house. Go badgers!
I know I’m not the only Potterhead out there, so who else is positively pumped for this?! There is no official release date for the movie but I think I’ll celebrate with a HP marathon in the meantime.