Warner Bros. is pulling out all the stops to ensure their second venture in the wizarding world will be a box office success. With several “Harry Potter” director credits already under his belt, filmmaker David Yates is now reportedly being courted by the studio to direct J.K. Rowling’s newest project “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them."
Yates is rumored to be in negotiation with Warner Bros. to sign on to direct the “Potter” spinoff, an adaptation of Rowling’s short novel of the same title, says Variety. “No deal has been made but insiders confirmed both sides are in negotiations,” reads the report. “The studio has always wanted to approach a person who was familiar with the ‘Harry Potter’ landscape.”
The casting news comes after Yate’s success leading the final four “Potter” films: “Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix” (2007), “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” (2009), “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1" and "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 2” (2010/2011)
With "Harry Potter" franchise star Daniel Radcliffe officially off the boy wizard bandwagon (actress Emma Watson has hinted she might cameo) filmmakers are now searching their “Fantastic Beasts” star, sources tell Variety. The new lead, magizoologist Newt Scamander, is described as being in his early 20s, a former Hogwarts Hufflepuff student and relative to “Harry Potter” character Luna Lovegood. The film will reportedly take place in New York and predate Rowling’s first “Harry Potter” tale by 70-years.
Rowling announced her plans to reunite with Warner Bros. and bring “Fantastic Beasts” to the silver screen last September. “Although it will be set in the worldwide community of witches and wizards where I was so happy for seventeen years, 'Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them' is neither a prequel nor a sequel to the Harry Potter series, but an extension of the wizarding world,” Rowling said in a statement.
“Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” is scheduled for a Nov. 18, 2016 debut.