• Interviews

Fantastic Beasts and How to Tell Their Stories

Perhaps no contemporary author in the English language has had a cultural impact equal to J.K. Rowling. Her Harry Potter books have introduced millions of people to the pleasures of literature and formative fantasy. And the films inspired gifted movies with a fanciful visual universe with few rivals. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them returns us to that world, or perhaps a parallel universe of sorts. The story of wizard zoologist Newt Scamander and the fantastic creatures he studies takes place in New York a couple of decades before the Hogwarts years we’re all so familiar with. In this prequel, the first of several announced which will take place in the wizarding world between the world wars, Scamander becomes unwitting hero in an adventure which involves fellow new-world wizards Tina Goldstein (Katherine Waterston), her sister Queenie (Alison Sudol) and Percival Graves (Colin Farrell). Also (very) unwitting is muggle (or non-mag, as they call them in the Big City) sidekick Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler). We asked Redmayne, Waterston and Farrell – what sets Rowling's stories apart?