Wizarding World Lives on in 2018 'Fantastic Beasts' Sequel

J.K. Rowling's non-Potter movie gets a 2018 sequel and a 2020 follow-up.

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Author J.K. Rowling’s latest Harry Potter adventure just hit the London stage in two parts and bookshelves with the publication of Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, but that isn’t the only new look at the wondrous wizarding world. The Potter spinoff Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, starring Oscar-winner Eddie Redmayne as eccentric wizard Newt Scamander, is due out in theaters on November 18 of this year – and two sequels are already in the works.

We knew the Fantastic Beasts follow-up was coming, but now Warner Brothers just announced release dates for the second and third installments.

The as-yet-untitled Fantastic Beasts sequel is set to cast its spell on audiences worldwide on November 16, 2018, nearly two years after the first film. The third installment will follow suit, arriving in November 2020, but the exact date on the last entry in the trilogy hasn’t been specified.

The first film, about magical creatures that escape in muggle-filled 1920s New York, kicks off a planned trilogy that the studio hopes will reignite the fan fervor that made their big-screen adaptations of Rowling’s Potter books into a $7 billion cinematic behemoth.

“The second Fantastic Beasts movie moves deeper into an increasingly dark time for the wizarding world, where Newt and our other heroes have to decide on their allegiances,” Warner Bros. said in a typically vague statement.

This new trilogy will be fascinating because the movies won’t specifically be adapted from individual books, so it’s uncharted territory for Rowling. The author previously wrote a faux Fantastic Beasts textbook that was sold in a set alongside a similarly fake Hogwarts tome Quidditch Through the Ages. But the first Fantastic Beasts movie, directed by Harry Potter movie alum and co-written by Rowling, puts an original spin on new wizarding adventures that readers aren’t familiar with quite yet.

The Warner Bros. statement also specified that “there is much more on the horizon,” and it’s easy to see how. Besides these new films, the Potter-centric site Pottermore, and Rowling’s Potter stage play, there’s also the ever-expanding “Wizarding World of Harry Potter theme-parks at Universal Studios in Orlando, Hollywood, and Japan.

With Rowling’s announcement that Cursed Child would be the last Potter-focused adventure, she’s going to have to use every magical avenue at her disposal to tangentially continue the story she created. It might seem like a risk, but this is Harry Potter we’re talking about.

It’s a sure bet; and it’s a great time to be a Potter fan.

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