Fantastic Beasts: The Fourth and Fifth Limbo Movies

Fantastic Beasts: Dumbledore’s Secrets, “the sequel to $200 million in”Harry Pottersubstring, is an anomaly in JK Rowlingwizarding world. With just $405 million at the global box office, it’s the first film in the blockbuster franchise — out of 11 — to barely break even. in his theatrical career.

The fact that “Fantastic Beasts” is seeing diminishing returns after three movies is particularly painful, and not just for Rowling, who envisioned that prequel story Five film franchisebut also to those who support it Warner Bros. , which bets big on the assumption that all things Hogwarts will remain relevant at the box office – whether or not Harry, Ron, and Hermione take part in the adventures that unfold on screen.

However, this was not the case. Although its sequel, 2018’s Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, didn’t completely slip away with $654 million at the global box office, its rock-solid performance put the future of Newt Scamander – the hero played by Eddie Redmayne – and company into question. Ticket sales are down 20% from 2016’s “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” which grossed more than $800 million worldwide.

There was no script for a fourth or fifth movie by April 2022, when the third “Fantastic Beasts” movie opened in theaters. Warner Bros. executives have been waiting to see the reception on “The Secrets of Dumbledore” before pouring resources into the final chapters of the magical saga. Unlike the original eight-film Potter franchise, which was adapted from a rich collection of novels, only Rowling has Flimsy source material for “Fantastic Beasts”. So, even though the sub-story was heading towards the full-scale Wizarding War between beloved Hogwarts professor Albus Dumbledore and Voldemort-esque Gellert Grindelwald (you don’t need to be a “Harry Potter” fan to know how the battle ends), Rowling doesn’t have and Steve Kloves, who co-wrote The Secrets of Dumbledore, have a clear blueprint for the grand finale.

Months later, it still doesn’t look like Warner Bros. Prioritizes another chapter in the “Fantastic Beasts” universe. With “Dune” and “Wonder Woman 1984”, a studio recently produced by Warner Bros. I only waited a few days After those films were released to announce plans for a sequel. So, the curious silence around the “Fantastic Beasts” chapter isn’t entirely encouraging. It’s worth noting, however, that “The Secrets of Dumbledore” opened around the same time that Warner Bros. Motion Pictures was experiencing a regime change, one that saw the exit of president Toby Emmerich and the rise of former MGM film heads Michael De Luca and Pamela Abdi.

Warner Bros. representatives refused. Representatives for Rowling’s company will comment on the matter.

Unless the “Fantastic Beasts” filmmaking team gets the cameras rolling in the next six months – which seems unlikely given the lack of a script – the fourth film won’t be released until 2025 at the earliest. There was a longer gap between the second and third films, which were set four years apart, but the Harry Potter fanbase has never been younger. That’s a problem, especially since the spin-off stories don’t appeal to the new heist, as evidenced by the low and low ticket sales of subsequent installments.

There is also less incentive to put time, energy and money into Struggling series already Because, well, Rowling has become increasingly controversial for her frequent comments against transgender women. The studio was clear Don’t want to go out of a billion-dollar affair, but increased sensitivity around the controversial author means Warners will be selective about which projects it needs to promote.

And it’s not like the movie theater scene is forgiving in the age of COVID. Even acclaimed big-budget films have failed to generate the kind of coinage they were expected to make in pre-pandemic times, as China and Russia, two major markets for films, are virtually closed to Hollywood blockbusters. That makes any $200 million in support a riskier proposition than ever.

David Zaslav, CEO of Warner Bros. Discovery, to a recent earnings call about the possibility of doing “something” with Rowling on another story in the Wizarding World series “moving forward.” However, stop on the details. The obvious choice would be to go to the “Harry Potter and the Cursed Child” theatrical spin-off, which picks up right after the epilogue in “Deathly Hallows” and focuses on Harry, Ron, Hermione, and their children. Adding to the potential excitement: It’s not out of the question to ask the original cast to reprise their roles. Warner Bros. Inc. is invested in the Tony Award-winning play, but Rowling owns the rights to “Cursed Child,” so the big screen version requires author approval.

Given the lackluster reception of the three existing films, it may come as no surprise that Warner Bros. It has not yet been determined if the fourth and fifth Fantastic Beasts movies will be completed as intended. But the state of limbo is still unexpected given that “Harry Potter” has been positioned as one of two major franchises (DC Comics being the other) to support Warner Bros.’s movie strategy. At a time when big budget properties reign supreme at the box office.

Presumably, this means that the company has no choice but to dedicate major attention to DC Studios, which is newly headed up by director James Gunn and producer Peter Safran. But DC’s movie production hasn’t matched the consistency or popularity of Disney’s Marvel Cinematic Universe. Of course, the idea is that Gunn and Safran will right the ship. Realistically, it can take years to build a successful slate of superhero stories.

In the meantime, it might take a little more magic – and a lot of liquid luck – to find a magical way to bring the Potterverse to life on the big screen.

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