The following contains mild spoilers for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. You have been warned!
Despite the fact that her 2001 book Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them is only 128 pages long and mostly consists of descriptions of magical species that magizoologist Newt Scamander found during his travels across the world in the 1920s, J.K Rowling has already announced her intention to make four sequels to its imminent cinematic adaptation. Considering that the Harry Potter universe is so vast and full of both wonderful characters and possibilities, I couldn't help but wonder whether that meant Eddie Redmayne's Newt Scamander might become less and less integral as the series progressed. But after I posed this question to director David Yates at the New York press junket for Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them he reassured me that was far from the case.
After I quizzed director David Yates about whether Newt Scamander would be at the forefront of the future films, the filmmaker didn't just say that he'd be a main player in the franchise throughout, but he also teased that his brother Theseus Scamander will debut in Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them 2. Yates explained:
He will, yeah. The story revolves around Newt. And he's got a brother, as well. There's so many new and interesting characters [still] to come.
Following my discussion with David Yates, I decided to ask producer David Heyman about the future for Newt Scamander in the Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them franchise. But rather than wholeheartedly backing up David Yates' comments, Heyman instead slightly back-tracked on them and suggested that Fantastic Beasts 2 will be much more of an ensemble piece. Heyman remarked:
I don't know about [Newt being] at the heart of all of them. I think he will be part of -- so will Queenie, and Tina, and Jacob -- part of the next one ... [and Dumbledore] and Credence, and Grindelwald and those will be the main players there.
Considering the recent revelation that a younger version of Albus Dumbledore will debut in the sequel, it makes sense that David Heyman still isn't 100% certain that Newt Scamander will be front and center for each of the upcoming Fantastic Beasts films. Especially since it's been confirmed that Johnny Depp's Gellert Grindelwald will also feature heavily, too.
That doesn't leave a lot of room for Newt Scamander and the loveable beasts that reside in his briefcase, let alone Katherine Waterston's Tina Goldstein, Dan Fogler's Jacob Kowalski, or Alison Sudol's Queenie Goldstein, each of whom Heyman also insisted will be returning, too.
But don't be too worried, though. Because there's still plenty more story left for Newt's antics to fill in Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them. In fact, the first of this five-film arc hasn't even been released yet. That wrong will finally be righted on November 18, when Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them hits cinemas. Stay tuned to CinemaBlend for further news from my discussions with its cast and crew in the build up to its release.