The juggernaut that is the Harry Potter franchise continues to churn forward, with the baton officially passed to Eddie Redmayne and his character Newt Scamander in last year’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The sequel to that film officially started production today, and Warner Bros. has released a new plot summary and casting details.
Harry Potter creator J. K. Rowling returns to write the script, just as she did for the first Fantastic Beasts film.
The new movie will begin only a few months later in 1927, with the evil Gellert Grindelwald (played once again by Johnny Depp) escaping from custody and growing his army of followers.
Albus Dumbledore (now played by Jude Law) may be the only one who can stop him, as Grindelwald was once his closest friend.
Newt Scamander is recruited by Dumbledore to help track Grindelwald down and is soon reunited with Tina (Katherine Waterson), Queenie (Alison Sudol), and Jacob (Dan Fogler).
Unlike the first film, which was set entirely in New York City, the sequel will see the wizards return to London and even on to Paris.
A cast list from Warner Bros. lists several surprising characters, including Ezra Miller somehow returning as Credence, the boy Grindelwald manipulated in the first film.
Zoë Kravitz, seen briefly in a photograph in the first Fantastic Beasts, will appear as Newt’s former flame, Leta Lestrange.
Newt’s older brother and celebrated war hero, Theseus Scamander, will be played in the sequel by actor Callum Turner.
Kevin Guthrie will play Abernathy, Tina’s former boss at MACUSA, with William Nadylam appearing as a wizard named Yusuf Kama, and Ingvar Sigurdsson as a bounty hunter with the name Grimmson.
The plot also appears to involve some kind of wizarding circus, as actor Darri Ólafsson will play a character named Skender who runs such a circus, and Claudia Kim will appear as the featured attraction. The Fantastic Beasts sequel will hit theaters on November 16, 2018.