A new Fantastic Beasts update confirms the Harry Potter spin-off needs to end the franchise and move on. Starting in 2016, Fantastic Beasts has released three of the expected five movies in its franchise, with Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore being the latest entry. Fantastic Beasts delves deeper into the Wizarding World and explores the lives of Newt Scamander, author of the Harry Potter textbook “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them”, alongside Dumbledore’s complex relationship with the villainous Grindelwald. Although a spin-off of the beloved Harry Potter series, the Fantastic Beasts franchise has performed poorly at the box office, with Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore being its worst yet.
Eddie Redmayne revealed in an interview (via IndieWire) that he does not know anything about Fantastic Beasts 4 which echos the general feeling that the franchise has no future. Redmayne said that he loves playing Newt, but the future of Fantastic Beasts is down to JK Rowling, David Yates, and Warner. Fantastic Beasts 4 was dependent on the success of Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore, and its poor box office performance and middling reviews do not make the fourth film very likely. Plus, with all the controversy surrounding the Fantastic Beasts franchise, it would be better to move on from Fantastic Beasts and explore other avenues of the Wizarding World on-screen.
Unfortunately, with Redmayne’s news that he hasn’t heard anything about the production of Fantastic Beasts 4, it is very unlikely that it will happen. Aside from the poor box office performance, the Fantastic Beasts franchise has been shrouded in controversy. Ezra Miller, who plays Credence, has been arrested multiple times throughout the franchise’s production, Johnny Depp was replaced as Grindelwald by Mads Mikkelson, and Rowling herself has been the focus of constant controversy due to comments made regarding the trans community.
Also, Yates is directing Pain Hustlers for Netflix which means he is not currently available for Fantastic Beasts 4. Although the franchise was planned as a five-part series, all the issues surrounding Fantastic Beasts make it very unlikely that Fantastic Beasts 4 will happen. However, there has been no official decision released by the studio, so there is still a small possibility that Fantastic Beasts 4 could be made.
Despite the plans for five films, it might not be such a bad thing if the Fantastic Beasts franchise ends with The Secrets of Dumbledore as it has pretty much ended things for the story. Credence is revealed to be Aberforth Dumbledore’s son, and they finally get to meet; however, Credence is shown to have little time left as he is dying. Although this thread could be further developed, it is also an ideal way to remove Credence from the story if Warner Bros decide to cut ties with Miller.
Also, Dumbledore’s blood pact with Grindelwald is broken, and, although Grindelwald gets away, the story of Dumbledore’s great battle where he finally defeats Grindelwald is very well known in the Wizarding World. The Fantastic Beasts movies would eventually show this battle, but as the outcome is already known it is not a necessity. There are a few loose ends, such as the stance of Newt and Tina’s relationship, but Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore has ended in a way that the final two films are not a necessity.
Fantastic Beasts ending does not mean there is no future for the Wizarding World on-screen. There are plenty of routes to follow for more Harry Potter spin-offs including a TV series for HBO. One popular idea among fans is a TV show focused on the four Marauders and their years at Hogwarts. James Potter, Sirius Black, Remus Lupin, and Peter Pettigrew are popular characters in the franchise and audiences have only seen them together in flashbacks. There is a lot of depth to their story, particularly with James Potter’s evolution from being a bully, and HBO could provide a very in-depth version of their story by doing a TV show.
Also, the first war against Voldemort being adapted to the screen is a popular idea, especially with the sad inevitability of some characters’ fates, such as James and Lily Potter, or Neville Longbottom’s parents. The work of The Order of the Phoenix is prominent in the Harry Potter series so a spin-off of their first war would give much greater depth to the original films. Harry Potter and the Wizarding World as a whole is still massively successful, Harry Potter World at Universal and the Hogwarts Legacy games are just two examples. Even releasing a cinematic version of The Cursed Child would be a big success for the franchise, given the success of the stage show. Fantastic Beasts may not have been a success, but ending it now does not mean the on-screen Wizarding World cannot be.