Fantastic Beasts 3, the third of five planned movies set in Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling's magical universe, recently delayed production by several months. Why? Well, it turns out the cast was given a specific and rather exciting reason for the delay. Let's hear it from Dan Fogler, who plays No-Maj Jacob Kowalski:
Yeah, we start in the fall. The movie is going to be gigantic! The reason we were given is that the movie is bigger than the first two combined. They needed more time to prep and they didn’t want to rush anything so they pushed it back. I can tell you that we are going to Brazil. I don’t really know much…[laughs]. I’ll get a script closer to when we start shooting.
Nice. So Dan Fogler doesn't have a script yet, but he told Hey U Guys he knows that the movie is meant to be bigger than the first two Fantastic Beasts movies combined.
The Warner Bros. film was meant to start filming this summer, and when the delay was announced last month, "prep time" was also used as the reason. But we didn't know the film was going to be this "gigantic," on the scale of twice the size of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and Fantastic Beasts: Crimes of Grindelwald. I just kinda hoped they wanted to take the time to go over the script and try to correct the trajectory of the franchise.
J.K. Rowling is the screenwriter for all of the Fantastic Beasts films, and she has said they plan to do five movies. If this third movie is indeed "gigantic" enough to be twice the size of the first two films, that sounds very ambitious and probably quite expensive.
The production budget on Fantastic Beasts 1 was reportedly $180 million, with Crimes of Grindelwald at $200 million. It stands to reason that the budget for a much larger film would go up, especially if they are potentially adding in more locations like Brazil.
Some fans are sour on the franchise after the major left turn twists of the second film. Fantastic Beasts 3 has a lot of work to do to not only win those fans back, but make enough money to keep the franchise afloat for two more films after this one, leading up to the big duel between Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law) and Gellert Grindelwald (Johnny Depp), which will probably come in the final movie.
It's not clear yet what the change in Fantastic Beast 3's schedule means for Ezra Miller's The Flash movie, but could it be a good sign for Dan Fogler on The Walking Dead? He just joined as Luke on The Walking Dead Season 9. TWD tends to start filming in early May and run through late November/early December. If Fantastic Beasts 3 was going to film in the summer, it would be hard to imagine Luke still being around. But if they start in late fall, well, that might be perfect timing to keep Luke around. Not that we know the Walking Dead story would go in that direction.
Dan Fogler clearly has a lot of story ahead for him -- as Jacob Kowalski in the Fantastic Beasts movies, and currently as Luke on The Walking Dead Season 9, which returns tonight on AMC. Fantastic Beasts 3 is probably going to lose any shot at opening in 2020, especially if it's so "gigantic," so pencil it in as a potential life choice for 2021. Here's what will be coming to the big screen later this year in 2019.