What Kind of Villain Is Gellert Grindelwald In Fantastic Beasts 2?

Grindelwald in Fantastic Beasts

After the Harry Potter franchise concluded in 2011 with Deathly Hallows - Part 2, the assumption was that the magical property would perhaps lose some of its popularity. But with theme parks, a Broadway play, and now the Fantastic Beasts franchise, J.K. Rowling's Wizarding World isn't going anywhere. That new franchise will continue with The Crimes of Grindelwald, with Johnny Depp playing the title character and primary antagonist. Depp made his debut at the end of the first Fantastic Beasts, but we'll get to see how scary he is now that the sequel is arriving. Producer David Heyman opened up about what makes Grindelwald so terrifying during the Crimes of Grindelwald set visit, saying:

A really scary one, because he has the power of persuasion. He's very seductive. He can make people follow him because he is as persuasive as he is. He's incredibly charismatic. He is wonderfully amoral. Or awfully amoral, depending on which way you look at it. Wonderful for a delicious villain. Awful, in terms of an individual. And he is a fundamentalist, or, he's an absolutist. He sees only one path. He believes in superiority of wizard kind over humankind. Muggles, you know, and makes a very persuasive case for that. Not one that I am prepared to follow. Not one I suspect you're prepared to follow. But you can understand why some people do, and that's really, really scary.

Does anyone else have chills? While a radical and powerful wizard attempting to hurt muggles is a concept Harry Potter fans are familiar with, Grindelwald's charm and magnetism will be uncharted territory. Voldemort was pure evil from the jump, where it seems Grindelwald will be a bit more cunning in his maneuvers.

David Heyman's comments to CinemaBlend's Sean O'Connell and the rest of the press at the Fantastic Beasts 2 set visit are enough to give most Harry Potter fans goosebumps, as it looks like Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is going to feature new and exciting aspects of the Wizarding World. As to what those crimes will be, only time will tell. Rather than simply trying to wipe out muggle existence with the power of his own wand, it seems Johnny Depp's character will be able to recruit members to his cause. And while Voldemort did this will pure fear and intimidation, Grindelwald is going to be a bit more charming and sly with his manipulation.

Not the question is who Grindelwald might recruit. He certainly has a relationship with Ezra Miller's Credence, although it's unclear how the young Wizard is functioning with his abilities and the Obscurial power that lies beneath the surface. He was betrayed by Grindelwald when under disguise in Fantastic Beasts, so their relationship should continue to be fascinating as the franchise continues on.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald will arrive in theaters on November 16th, 2018. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.