The Harry Potter spin-off entitled Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them has finally had its release date announced. The first of the 3-part series will hit theaters on November 18, 2016.
Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling’s new trilogy is, to the dismay of many excited fans, not a continuation nor a prequel of the adventures of Harry Potter, Ron Weasley, and Hermione Granger. Instead, the setting will take place seven decades before The Boy Who Lived was even born.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them first originated in Rowling’s Harry Potter series as a textbook on magical creatures the students were required to purchase at the famous Flourish & Blotts in Diagon Alley, in preparation for their first year at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. The author of this textbook was Newt Scamander, a fictional character who studied the also fictional field of Magizoology. Magizoology was the study of magical creatures. Rowling created a hard copy of the book (although she proceeded to keep the fictional author’s name on the front cover) which was published in 2001.
Rowling’s book consists of a brief biography of the author, an overview of what classifies as a beast, why Magizoology is an important area of study, and culminates in an A-Z index of all magical creatures found in the world of Harry Potter.
On the announced release date of the Harry Potter spin-off, fans will get the opportunity to visually delve into Scamander’s search for magical creatures before publishing his best-selling book. Unlike the Harry Potter series, Scamander’s adventures take place in America, set in 1920’s New York. In preparation for the new trilogy, owners of Rowling’s book can use the aforementioned biography of Scamander to bring themselves back up to speed on the life of the fictional author.
Scamander, whose full name is Newton Artemis Fido, was born in 1897 to a Hippogriff breeder (A Hippogriff is one of the many magical creatures who are a part of Harry Potter’s world). His mother’s profession was considered an influencing factor in his decision to devote his life to discovering magical creatures. Once he reached Hogwarts, Scamander was sorted into Hufflepuff (a house which values loyalty over all else). After graduating from the school of Witchcraft and Wizardry, Scamander gained employment in the Department for the Regulation and Control of Magical Creatures, part of the Ministry of Magic. During his career, Scamander not only worked in the Office of House-elf relocation and the Beast division, but also aided in creating the Werewolf Register of 1947. The Magizoologist also helped pass the 1965 experimental breeding ban concerning magical creatures in 1965. All of this hard work, along with his frequent research voyages to the Dragon Restraint and Research Bureau, resulted in Scamander being presented with a Second Class Order of Merlin in 1979. After retiring in Dorset with his wife and several magical creatures of his own, Scamander is reported to have had a son who eventually married Luna Lovegood, one of Harry Potter’s schoolmates and friends.
It is unclear whether the announced Harry Potter spin-off release date will produce anywhere near the amount of revenue that any of the original Harry Potter movies did. One thing is for sure, however; Rowling’s new trilogy will at least satisfy some of the longing Harry Potter fans have had since the movie franchise, which earned seven-and-a-half billion dollars, ended in 2011.
by Rebecca Grace