At a Warner Bros. fan event in London on Thursday, Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling suggested that there will be at least five films in the FANTASTIC BEASTS AND WHERE TO FIND THEM franchise. The studio had initially announced a trilogy with the final film hitting theaters in 2020.
“I’m pretty sure that there are going to be five movies, now that I’ve been able to property plot them out,” Rowling said at the Empire Theatre in London.
The film stars Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scarmander, a magizoologist who makes a brief stop in New York but is waylaid by a Muggle, a misplaced magical case and the escape of some fantastic beasts. David Yates, who helmed the past four Harry Potter films, is directing at least parts one and two from a script written by Rowling herself – the best-selling author’s first screenplay.
The news that Warner Bros. is anticipating five films – two more than initially thought – shouldn’t come as much of a surprise, as the studio has struggled to develop a reliable money-making franchise since the final installment of the Harry Potter films, The Deathly Hallows, in 2011. The Harry Potter franchise took in over $2.4 billion at the box office – not to mention the untold millions in merchandise and theme park revenues. Warner Bros., of course, is the studio behind the Zack Snyder-steered DC Comics Universe – which has generated solid box office returns but has done so amid scathing critical reviews, putting into question the box office power of the half-dozen films already announced.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (Part One) hits theaters on November 18.
Rowling is repped by The Blair Partnership.
Josh Lyons | Managing Editor
This news was first reported by Variety.