Although Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix made it clear that predictions and Seers are real, Professor Trelawney’s loopy demeanor often made it difficult to take the idea seriously. But Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them offered an intriguing and dangerous Seer that J.K. Rowling has revealed enigmatic, new information about.
In his disguise as Percival Graves (Colin Farrell), Gellert Grindelwald corners the impressionable Credence (Ezra Miller) and tells him of a vision he has of “a child with immense power.” Both the movie and Graves trick the viewer into thinking that child is Credence’s creepy younger sister — but the Obscurus turns out to be Credence himself.
After all, Dumbledore constantly emphasized the fact that predicting the future does not negate free will. Recall the scene in Order of the Phoenix after Dumbledore tells Harry of the prophecy involving Harry and Voldemort:
Dumbledore surveyed him for a moment through his glasses. ‘The odd thing, Harry,’ he said softly, ‘is that it may not have meant you at all. Sybill’s prophecy could have applied to two wizard boys, both born at the end of July that year, both of whom had parents in the Order of the Phoenix, both sets of parents having narrowly escaped Voldemort three times. One, of course, was you. The other was Neville Longbottom.’
‘Then — it might not be me?’ said Harry.
‘I am afraid,’ said Dumbledore slowly, looking as though every word cost him a great effort, ‘that there is no doubt that it is you.’ You are forgetting the next part of the prophecy, the final identifying feature of the boy who could vanquish Voldemort . . . Voldemort himself would mark him as his equal. And so he did, Harry. He chose you, not Neville. You are forgetting the next part of the prophecy, the final identifying feature of the boy who could vanquish Voldemort . . . Voldemort himself would mark him as his equal. And so he did, Harry. He chose you, not Neville.
The natural assumption from Fantastic Beasts was that Grindelwald misinterpreted his own vision, choosing to believe the child was Credence’s sister just as Voldemort chose to believe the prophecy referred to Harry instead of Neville.
But a recent comment from Rowling raises questions about Grindelwald’s vision.
This means that Grindelwald was either lying about his vision to Credence in order to lure him into a false sense of security — or the “child” in his vision was someone else entirely. Maybe even Harry Potter. After all, predictions don’t have a set date.
Could Harry and his friends have passed one of Grindelwald’s predictions in the Department of Mysteries intriguing Hall of Prophecy? Perhaps it was one of the prophecies caught by a stray spell, never to be heard again.