Fantastic Beasts 3 now has an official title — it’s called Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore. Additionally, Warner Bros. has decided to bring forward the Fantastic Beasts 3 release date by three months. Instead of July 15, 2022, the third entry in J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter spin-off franchise will now open April 15, 2022 in cinemas worldwide. Set several years after Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore is set partly in Rio de Janeiro and Berlin, with Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law) sending Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) on a new mission.
In addition to Law and Redmayne, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore also stars Katherine Waterston as the Auror Tina Goldstein, Dan Fogler as WWI veteran Jacob Kowalski who’s No-Maj (non-magical), Alison Sudol as Tina’s younger sister Queenie Goldstein, Ezra Miller as the anti-hero Credence Barebone, Callum Turner as Newt’s older brother and WWI hero Theseus Scamander, and Mads Mikkelsen as the dark wizard villain Gellert Grindelwald (replacing Johnny Depp who exited the role after losing a libel suit that described him as a “wife beater”).
As the title clearly implies, Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore will no doubt explore the fallout from the ending of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, where Grindelwald claimed that Credence was a long-lost brother of Dumbledore — and that his original name is Aurelius Dumbledore. It was another one of Rowling’s egregious unfounded changes, up there with declaring that Dumbledore is gay after the fact (which Fantastic Beasts continues to ignore), and the casting of Claudia Kim as Nagini. Rowling has drawn backlash for it all, though that’s the least of her problems.
For Warner Bros., there’s also the matter of the series’ reception. The Crimes of Grindelwald was a critical dud — I described it as a clueless and forgettable entry — and it had the worst box office performance for any Wizarding World movie. Still, the $654.9 million (about Rs. 4,832 crores) gross and the fact that it’s attached to the lucrative Harry Potter brand was enough for the studio to continue with the five-film Fantastic Beasts plan. Warner did push back the release date to give Rowling & Co. more time to craft The Secrets of Dumbledore, which thanks to COVID-19 has become about three-and-half-years.
Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore will release April 15, 2022 in cinemas in India and around the world.