Transcript #270

MuggleCast 270 Transcript

Show Intro

[“Hedwig’s Theme” plays]

Andrew: Because Harry Potter spinoff series, this is MuggleCast Episode 270 for September 12th, 2013.

[Show music plays]

Andrew: Welcome to MuggleCast Episode 270.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: I, for one, did not think we would be doing an episode so soon after our final episode, which was just back on August 27th. Episode 269, we spent the whole episode talking about how the show was over. But we were very clear we would return when a big announcement was made, and today’s announcement on September 12th certainly warrants it. Micah and Eric, hello.

Micah: Good morning.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Good morning. It is morning; let’s be clear on that. Several of us were woken up to this news, and Andrew, you just happened to be up because you are a badass; you roll like that. But I don’t think anybody expected today, or going to bed last night, to wake up to this Harry Potter news.

Andrew: No. Micah is coming to us from New Orleans, so we know he did not get a heads up warning about it.

Micah: Not at all. The MuggleCast news center is vacant right now. I mean, I know they’re doing a little bit of remodeling in there, getting ready for the next podcast that’s going to take over.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Micah: But yeah, no, this is cool news and surprising…

Andrew: Yeah.

Micah: …I would say. For sure.

News: JK Rowling to Write New Film Series Based on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

Andrew: Well… so let’s start… let’s recap what we know today. So, JK Rowling and Warner Bros. at 9:01AM Eastern announced that JK Rowling is screenwriting essentially a Harry Potter spinoff series based on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the mini-book that she released in 2001 to benefit the Comic Relief charity. This book was… of course it was written by JK Rowling, but on the book it says it was written by Newt Scamander. [trying to work out the pronunciation] Scamander? Scamander? Scamander? And she is going to be writing the movie series! This is a movie series from Newt’s perspective. Now, the other key part about this is that this is going to be set 70 years… I’m kind of shaking while I say this, by the way.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: This is going to be set 70 years…

Micah: Are you cold?

Andrew: It’s a little chilly here in California this morning.

[Everyone laughs]

Andrew: It’s going to be set 70 years before the first Harry Potter book, and it’s going to be set in New York. Now, I did a little check on this. Newt was born… well, the first Harry Potter book was set in, what, ’91?

Eric: ’91-ish. So, that puts this in the heart of the roaring ’20s in New York.

Andrew: And Newt was born in 1897, okay? So, that means Newt is going to be a strapping 20 year old-ish, around that age?

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: Okay, so…

Eric: Twenty-three? Depending…

Andrew: So, I think that’s an important point because now we know that this film series is going to be based around a young boy wizard. A new boy wizard!

[Eric laughs]

Micah: In New York.

Andrew: Yes. And JK Rowling… here’s what JK Rowling had to say:

“Although it will be set in the worldwide community of witches and wizards where I was so happy for seventeen years, ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’ is neither a prequel nor a sequel to the ‘Harry Potter’ series, but an extension…”

[fake coughs] Spinoff.

“…of the wizarding world.”

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: [continues]

“The laws and customs of the hidden magical society will be familiar to anyone who has read the ‘Harry Potter’ books or seen the films, but Newt’s story will start in New York.”

And then she gave some backstory on how this came to be.

“It all started when Warner Bros. came to me with the suggestion of turning ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them’ into a film. I thought it was a fun idea, but the idea of seeing Newt Scamander, the supposed author of ‘Fantastic Beasts,’ realized by another writer was difficult. Having lived for so long in my fictional universe, I feel very protective of it and I already knew a lot about Newt. As hardcore ‘Harry Potter’ fans will know, I liked him so much that I even married his grandson, Rolf, to one of my favorite characters from the ‘Harry Potter’ series, Luna Lovegood.”

By the way, Evanna Lynch very excited about today’s news. She quoted that little line from the press release and was saying, “Hey, JK Rowling. Just saying. Come on. Get me back in there.” [laughs]

Eric: [laughs] She wants to play old lady Luna.

Andrew: Yeah. So…

Eric: It’s… yeah.

Andrew: …final part, she says:

“As I considered Warners’ proposal, an idea took shape that I couldn’t dislodge. That is how I ended up pitching my own idea for a film to Warner Bros.”

So, there we go. What do you think, boys?

Eric: There really is so much info right here.

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: In this statement. Of course, what we used to do is dissect statements like these. I mean, I guess one of the top questions I have is, could Warner Bros. have done a film without JK Rowling penning it? Because she said, kind of, the idea of having Newt Scamander “realized by another writer was difficult.”

Andrew: Mhm.

Eric: So, would they have gone ahead? And just what was Warner Bros. doing sitting to themselves, thinking, “Hmm, there’s potential here. We didn’t go over every page of every Harry Potter-related book.”

Andrew: [laughs] Yeah!

Eric: “There’s still Quidditch. There’s still Fantastic Beasts.”

Andrew: Beedle the Bard.

Eric: Yeah, Beedle the Bard. So, what does this really mean here, that this is happening?

Andrew: Well, Harry Potter is a cash cow, so yeah, of course they had to look through the other books and consider what they could draw out. But I have to emphasize something really important here. This is only a big deal because JK Rowling is writing the screenplay.

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: This is the only reason we should be so excited. If, as Eric pointed out, somebody else was writing this, I would be excited because it is new Harry Potter news. But this is a JK Rowling Harry Potter spinoff. That is what makes this huge news.

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: Micah, what do you think?

Micah: Yeah, I mean, I think the big thing is that… Eric mentioned Quidditch Through the Ages and you brought up Beedle the Bard, but there’s a character here I think that she obviously feels a connection to and potentially thought about at one time writing more about. She even mentions in her quote, “[knows] a lot” about this character, so that was the primary reason as to why she didn’t want to let somebody else kind of take the reins here. And so I’m looking forward to all this additional information that she has stored somewhere in her head that we’re now going to be able see on a movie screen.

Andrew: Mhm.

Eric: This is… another reason that this really, really much interests me is it’s set in New York. The book itself is kind of just… it’s a textbook. It’s a school textbook. It’s Harry Potter’s…

Micah: I expect to be cast, by the way, in this movie now.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Oh, because it’s in New York? Yeah. Well no, I… because the book itself is kind of like a textbook. It’s just a list of magical creatures and where to find them. Apparently, now Where to Find Them is going to be on the big screen, which is really exciting. But a lot of them are located… a lot of the ones in the book are located across Britain and Ireland, I think, if I’m remembering correctly, so we’re going to find out a lot. Here’s another… I can think of at least five reasons why this is super, super, super awesome. Couldn’t think of ten. Couldn’t be a top ten segment.

Micah: All right. Five. Let’s go.

Eric: I wouldn’t want to step on Ben’s shoes. But the thing is, this is an opportunity for JK Rowling to grow as a writer because this is her first screenwriting outing, so I’m sure it appealed to her for that reason. Two, it’s not a Harry Potter sequel, nor is it a Harry Potter prequel, so it’s kind of exciting for everybody in that respect. It’s not going to have the traditional Harry Potter logo all over it, I don’t think. It shouldn’t. It really just shouldn’t. It should just be called Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. People know these days that series are related when they don’t have to share the same title. Like The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings. Everybody knows.

Andrew: I have a feeling it will be called JK Rowling’s

Eric: Presents…

Andrew:Fantastic Beasts.

Eric: Yeah, something like that.

Micah: Or it could be something related to Newt Scamander. His name could take the title…

Andrew: Yeah, but they want to get that Harry Potter connection in, I think. So…

Micah: Yeah. No, that’s a good point. I’m just interested to see how he gets from New York over to the UK, if that’s the direction that this is going in. What kind of major events – somebody mentioned the Roaring Twenties earlier – is he going to play into? Is he responsible for the stock market crash?

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Micah: Those things would be really interesting to know about.

Eric: Dragons in the stock exchange, or something like that.

What Do We Know About Newt Scamander?

Andrew: Well, I’m looking at… on the Harry Potter Wiki… it looks like Rowling is going to have to rewrite his history a little bit because there’s a surprising amount of information about him here on this Harry Potter Wiki. They say that he went to Hogwarts, he graduated, and then he joined the Ministry of Magic. Spent two years in the Office for House-Elf Relocation, then he joined the Beasts Division and put his knowledge of magical beasts to good use. In 1918, Scamander was commissioned by Augustus Worme of Obscurus Books to write Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The book became a bestseller. He was then appointed to… he was the Headmaster of Hogwarts!

Eric: What?

Andrew: Yeah. “In his personal life, Scamander married a woman named Porpentina and fathered at least one child. By the beginning of the 1990s, Scamander was retired and living in Dorset.” But I don’t think the film series will get that far. So, I mean, there’s a couple of big elements here: he went to Hogwarts, he worked at the Ministry of Magic, and then he became Headmaster at Hogwarts.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: So, where does this all play into the movie series?

Eric: Just in my mind’s eye, I think that perhaps the series will take place – or at least the first film – while he’s kind of traveling on location. A bit like people who are researching indigenous species would do. They’ll travel to their natural habitat. So, perhaps he’s on a particularly risky assignment in New York for a creature that only lives in New England or something like that, and he’s writing about it and studying it. He could still be on assignment writing this book, which I think would actually tie it into the title, if it’s called Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

Micah: I think the big thing that’s going to initially come out of this first movie is something that a lot of fans have been looking forward to, and that is some kind of insight into the wizarding world here in the United States.

Eric: Yes. Yeah, absolutely. I would say that JK Rowling has shied away from it in the past. There may have been a few passing references in Quidditch – possibly in Fantastic Beasts, I’m not quite sure – about the Salem Institute or something like that. The obvious references were all made to wizard school in America. But everything other than that? Nope, nothing. And we’re going to see that firsthand through Newt’s eyes, what the wizarding community is like, or at least was like, in the ’20s here in America. And that is amazing.

Andrew: I’m… is this going to be taking place during the prohibition period?

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: Because when was that? Whenever I hear ’20s, I think of Boardwalk Empire, the HBO show.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: Are we going to have some cross-promotion between the two? Newt goes down to Atlantic City to get some alcohol from Nucky Thompson, the Boardwalk Empire character.

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Eric: Prohibition was technically in place from 1919 to 1933, so this technically…

Andrew: Oh, okay.

Eric: If it takes place in the ’20s, it was probably during prohibition. So yeah, that’ll be… [laughs] that’s pretty exciting.

Andrew: By the way, 1919 to 1930: one era of American life that I do not want to ever transport back to. But if Newt is going to be there, okay, I’ll watch a movie about it.

[Micah laughs]

Why Did JK Rowling Decide to Do This?

Andrew: I think the other big aspect of this, which we already touched on, but the fact that this is a movie series. Warner Bros., of course, always looking for big new franchises. Harry Potter was huge for them up through 2011 when the final Harry Potter movie came out. By doing this, it follows in their long line of extending franchises as far as possible. Of course, they split Deathly Hallows into two movies. The Hobbit, you look at The Hobbit, that was one book. They initially decided to split it into two movies. Then they talked to Peter Jackson into turning it into three.

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: I mean, they want to take full advantage of franchises. In a way, we shouldn’t be shocked by this. But on the other hand, there’s an important question here I want to pose to you guys. Did you guys… did it ever cross your mind that the next step in the Harry Potter franchise would not be the encyclopedia, would not be a new Harry Potter book, a sequel or prequel, but be a film series penned by Rowling? [laughs] I don’t think anybody guessed that.

Eric: That’s… yeah, definitely not. But that’s why I think it is so appealing. Nobody could have thought of it. You could sit a thousand monkeys down and tell them to come up with ideas, and in five years they may not have come up with a new Harry Potter movie. Because we thought all the literature was used up, or at least all the viable literature that could be turned into a movie. Also, JK Rowling’s support for this is shocking to me because we thought she was done and used up with Harry Potter. Although, there is a quote here in the statement and it’s true that she’s always said that if an idea came to her she would never say never, essentially, in terms of writing more Potter content.

Andrew: Right.

Eric: Or something like that.

Andrew: Right.

Eric: Because it’s growth for her as a writer, she’s going to be a screenwriter now for this series, it’s just so… it’s enough different, enough things different that it’s appealing to her. And I think it’s enough of the same for us because it’s still her that it still interests all the fans.

Andrew: I also genuinely hope that she is thinking she is going to write every movie.

Eric: Mhm.

Andrew: Because, like we said, this is going to be a film series. She has to write every one, right? I would be a bit bummed… [sighs] I mean, she will always be involved to some extent, but let’s just go crazy here. Let’s assume we get to Film 6.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: Is JK Rowling going to be writing every single one of these?

Eric: Why not, right? She can determine… she has all the power right now. She can determine how many movies there are and her involvement in each and every one of them. There’s such a huge difference between something being authorized by JK Rowling and something being – like Book of Spells – and being written by JK Rowling. [laughs] You can tell the fan excitement is just going to be insane. We’re going to be waiting in line again for this…

Micah: Mhm.

Eric: …movie now. [laughs] It’s unbelievable.

Micah: I think the big question though now, too, is who comes back into play from Potter? Will you see David Heyman be brought back in?

Andrew: Yeah.

Micah: Will you see David Yates potentially, depending on what else he’s working with… working on, I should say. I think really going back to the question that you asked, I would never have thought that it would be so soon after. Because you mentioned 2011, we’re only two years later here, almost three, from the last movie being released and now here we are with the potential for really another Potter type of movie. So, I think though that what you are seeing recently is… and I know that the whole Cuckoo’s Calling thing was not supposed to happen as quickly as it did, but you’re starting to see a lot more of JK Rowling. You’re starting to see her, in my opinion, really start to ramp things back up after taking some time off post-Deathly Hallows. So, that should be exciting for fans, I think, that you’re getting a new book series. It’s not Potter, but you know that it’s going to be a series and now you have a movie and you know that this is going to be a series. So, you have more of her moving forward…

Andrew: Yeah.

Micah: …than you did before.

Andrew: Right. Oh, man. In this announcement today… this was only part of an announcement between JK Rowling and Warner Bros. They also announced that Fantastic Beasts will be developed across the studio’s video game, consumer products, [laughs] and digital initiative businesses, including enhanced links with Pottermore.

Eric: Oh, gosh.

Andrew: So, you can expect a full line of merchandise to go along with your brand new Fantastic Beasts movie.

Eric: You know what? Some of those… and I don’t know that we’ve ever spent time specifically on Fantastic Beasts throughout the run of MuggleCast, but there are some really cool creatures and really cool ideas. Of course, as always, JK Rowling provides quality with her work. But it’s just so very interesting now, having this book get the spotlight on it.

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: It’s not a narrative, but she’ll be writing a narrative that… about the character who writes this book.

Andrew: Yeah. I think one important thing, also, to people who haven’t read Fantastic Beasts is you shouldn’t go buy it and assume it’s going to be a story in any capacity like Harry Potter. I mean, I haven’t read it in a while, and correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t it… [laughs] it’s kind of an encyclopedia of sorts, right?

Eric: Well, yeah. It’s always humorous, of course. It’s always… but it’s JK Rowling writing as Newt Scamander. It’s basically just a list – and I recall it being alphabetized – of fantastic beasts. So, it’s an index and…

Micah: Where to find them?

Eric: …essentially it’s a little bit of information about… [laughs] thank you, Micah. And it just has their danger level, which is the first thing. So, all the… a lot of the dragons are between four and five X’s. It has their danger level and a little bit about them, like short biographies, what they do, what area they live in, and how to… well, not how to find them necessarily, but you get it. It’s just a small description of each of the beasts that happen to be so fantastic enough to warrant the book.

MuggleCast 270 Transcript (continued)

MuggleCast’s Wish List for Fantastic Beasts Movie

Andrew: Jumping back to Micah’s point, let’s come up with a little wish list here of people we want involved with this.

Eric: Oh!

Andrew: David Heyman, obviously.

Eric: Mhm.

Andrew: Who’s the… Stuart Craig, the set designer, right? I think he has to come back because you want to carry over that look…

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: …that we saw. And creatively for him, this should be refreshing because he’s going to be able to take the look of Hogwarts and all these other areas, and bring them into the 1920s. They should actually look somewhat similar because there’s no technology in these schools, but you still want to go for an older look. So, I guess exterior scenes and whatnot. Obviously, we won’t see modern cars, but that should be really interesting.

Eric: Gosh. Maybe there will be a wizarding version of Diagon Alley but in New York.

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: Like Fifth Avenue. Fifth and Three-Quarters Avenue.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Or something like that. The sky is the limit. Everything is so open all of a sudden. It’s great. But talking about your wish list, I want to see a lot of practical effects the way that Jurassic Park did beasts…

Andrew: Mhm.

Eric: …did dinosaurs and stuff. And so, for that reason…

Andrew: Oh, you mean like not digital?

Eric: Yeah, not digital.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: I want to see as much practical effects as… because that just… not only does it hold the test of time better, but I think the eye still knows it’s more real. I want to see a lot of that stuff, and for that reason I want to have Sam Neill to be in the movie. I realize he’s Australian, but he played Dr. Alan Grant in the Jurassic Park series. So, I want to see him in some capacity in this film just because I think that would be cool.

Micah: Well, for wish lists, one would think that you’re going to see Dumbledore at some point, right? I mean…

Eric: Hmm.

Andrew: Oh, interesting.

Micah: He’s old. He’s very old, right? I forget exactly how old he is, I apologize.

Eric: She said 150. He would be about the same… he would be about forty to sixty years old, I guess, in the ’20s maybe. Thirty…

Micah: And he’s really… I mean, maybe with the exception of a few others, older staff members that we see at Hogwarts in the Potter series, he’s probably the only character that can have a meaningful storyline going back that far, right? Maybe McGonagall, maybe a few others, but in terms of incorporating them in, it’d be interesting to see how they do that because they’re not going to be able to use the same actors, obviously.

Andrew: Dumbledore was born in 1881.

Eric: So, he’ll be forty in the ’20s. Yeah. But like…

Andrew: And he’ll be, what? Ten, fifteen years older than Newt?

Eric: Something like that.

Andrew: About sixteen years.

Eric: But setting this in the ’20s is right after the Great War, right after the First World War and before the Second World War, which we know Grindelwald had a part in, in some capacity. I was just really… it’s kind of a time of… I want to say a good time of peace to be able to set a series like this because you’re not dealing with some of the same things you saw in Harry Potter, like the death and destruction of it all.

Andrew: When did Dumbledore become Headmaster of Hogwarts?

Eric: Hmm. Well, he was still… remember, Armando Dippet was Headmaster in Tom Riddle’s memory…

Andrew: Okay.

Eric: …which was in ’42, so it was after ’42. And I think the interesting thing for timeline’s sake is that I’m pretty sure right after Dippet was Dumbledore. So, that means Newt Scamander, if he was Headmaster of Hogwarts, had to have been Headmaster of Hogwarts prior to Dippet in ’42, which means…

Andrew: Dumbledore… I see right here, Dumbledore was appointed in 1956.

Eric: There we go.

Andrew: After Dippet left, as you thoughtfully pointed out.

Eric: So, it had to be before Dippet that Scamander was Headmaster, which means we have like a twenty-year window here, assuming that Dippet served for no years, but you get what I’m saying. So, Scamander… [laughs] he’s got a lot of good things that are about to happen to him.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: I can see this series ending at Hogwarts, but how and why he gets there… especially because he always seems more like a field guy to me than a desk guy.

Micah: Yeah. I mean, I’m just looking this up now, too, and it says that he was Headmaster prior to Dippet.

Eric: There we go. But yeah, I mean, the hows and the whys, obviously, are up to JK Rowling’s creative talents here. This is super exciting.

Andrew: Yeah. As much… as great as it is to read background info on Newt, I can’t help but feel a lot of this is going to be rewritten for the sake of the movie because of the fact that it’s going to be set in New York, so some things are going to have to be changed around.

Eric: Because of the fact that he’s no longer… I don’t want to say a nobody, but one of those characters that was never called into action or never had to have a fully-realized story…

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: …things will be modified, for sure.

Anticipated Release Date for Fantastic Beasts Movie

Andrew: I’m wondering about a release date for this movie, of course. I would say… 2015 is too soon. I would say 2016 or 2017 is when we’re going to get the first news about this, so… or sorry, when the first movie is going to be released. Meaning they would potentially shoot in 2015? Late 2014? [laughs] Obviously, Warner Bros. wants to get this rolling as soon as possible, so I could imagine them starting to shoot in 2014 or early 2015. Because, in terms of how films work, right now they’re planning Batman vs. Superman. That’s their big Summer 2015 movie. I could see this being their big Summer 2016 movie?

Eric: Mhm.

Andrew: So… or maybe a November launch? Like the first Harry Potter movies were before the summer.

Eric: Aww. Takes me back, Andrew.

[Andrew and Micah laugh]

Eric: Now, guys, we have to do our announcement where we’re going to be coming bi-monthly now with these news updates…

Andrew: No! No! [laughs]

Eric: We’re going to change from Chapter-by-Chapter. We have to go Monster-by-Monster now in Fantastic Beasts for the thing.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: I’ve got to credit my girlfriend with that idea. She’s like, “You guys have got to do that.”

Andrew: Well, it does raise that question: what does this mean for MuggleCast?

[Andrew and Eric laugh]

Andrew: I will say… no commitment right now. We’ll of course… it’s so long off from now. This is great news, of course, today but it’s still so long off.

Eric: Yeah.

Andrew: This is not a movie coming out next year or even the year after that.

Eric: Oh, gosh. [laughs] “Next month, in theaters.”

Andrew: [laughs] They’ve been secretly shooting. Yeah. This is why Matt Smith left Doctor Who. He’s becoming Newt.

Who Should be Cast as Newt Scamander?

Eric: [laughs] Who do you guys want to see cast as Newt? I wanted to ask you…

Andrew: Matt Smith!

Eric: Matt Smith?

Andrew: No. [laughs] Actually, Matt Smith would probably be a good age for this. God, I don’t know. Any other ideas? You’ve got to pick somebody who is, what, late 20s?

Eric: And British but in America.

Andrew: How about somebody who is well… great actor, can pull off any sort of role, he’s going to be in his late 20s, he can do a great American accent – actually, you don’t need an American accent – umm… Dan Radcliffe!

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: Dan Radcliffe will not. Will not. God, you’ve just got to look at a variety of young adult actors. I don’t know. Benedict Cumberbatch? [laughs]

Eric: Who is in… I was thinking of Benedict. He’s a little tall. He’s a little taller than the Newt I’m thinking of.

Andrew: You know what, though? This is going to sound a bit crazy, but if you look at this picture of Newt on the Harry Potter Wiki…

Eric: Oh, God.

Andrew: …I can see Benedict in this role. He’s kind of got a longish face like Newt. I don’t know where this photo is from.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: Maybe the theme park, but I can see it.

Eric: Oh, gosh. That would be him as a headmaster, I guess.

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: Hmm, there’s a lot of people… who’s the guy who was in Warm Bodies?

Andrew: Oh, Nicholas Hoult.

Eric: Nicholas Hoult. I’d like to see him as Newt Scamander.

Andrew: I think he’s a little young-looking for me. I think this has to be somebody around the Matt Smith age.

Eric: Nicholas Hoult currently, age-wise, is [born in 1989], so he’s 24. So yeah, I think Nicholas Holt. That’s who I’m going to pick for my Newt Scamander.

Andrew: You know what, though? Honestly… not to cheapen it or anything, but they do… they’ve got to pick a young, good-looking guy. That’s what’s going to help this take off.

Eric: Mhm.

Andrew: They need… we need a… Harry was, of course, an amazing character, but I don’t know if he was one that people really like fawn over.

Eric: He was by far a sex symbol because that would have been weird, I think.

Andrew: Right.

Eric: Because he’s your hero.

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: But when you’re not telling a story about life and death, war and revenge, prophecies, wizards… a hero story. When you’re not telling a hero’s tale you can have a lot of fun with those kinds of things, I think, as a protagonist is wading through the wide world of beasts, you know?

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: It’s an adventure story more than Harry Potter was.

Andrew: Yeah. And I’m not saying it has to be like a heartthrob or anything, but I think it needs to be a good-looking… heck, even for my sake. Just for me. Whatever. It has to be a good-looking guy, [laughs] I feel. You’ve got to… you want to push the marketing, and you want to have a big launch for this franchise.

Micah: I can do it.

Andrew: Micah, you want to do it?

[Eric laughs]

Micah: I can do it.

Andrew: You’re about the right age.

Micah: That’s right.

Andrew: I have…

Eric: How’s your British accent, Micah?

Micah: Oh, they have things that can be done to…

Andrew: Say…

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: No, no, it has to be legit. Say, [in a bad British accent] “Hello, I’m Newt Scamander.”

[Prolonged silence]

Micah: I don’t know. I don’t know.

[Andrew laughs]

Micah: Maybe I can’t.

Eric: He’s got cold feet. We’ll have to get a few drinks in him, then maybe he’ll do it.

[Andrew laughs]

Eric: Oh, gosh. It’s still early though.

Andrew: Oh, hold on guys.

Micah: I actually have to go because I have to…

Andrew: Oh, do you?

Micah: Yeah.

What Does This Mean For MuggleCast?

Andrew: Okay. Well, maybe we should wrap it up. I don’t think there’s much more to be said, actually. But in terms of the future of more on this on MuggleCast, we’ll see what happens in the future. We may be a long way off from new developments about this, so it may be a while, but…

Eric: It’s true. When JK Rowling says something, usually it’s a couple of years before she gets back on to social media, so…

Andrew: [laughs] Right, that’s true. We’ve got like six months at least.

Eric: And the thing is, did she even use her Twitter for this? Because I think it said that it was posted on Facebook.

Andrew: No. She didn’t even use the Twitter.

Eric: But she uses it on Facebook. She’s on Facebook with this stuff? What is that?

Andrew: Well, Facebook is more popular, so…

Eric: Hmm.

Andrew: And she’s got more followers, 1.8 million, on Facebook.

[Eric laughs]

Andrew: And by the way, sorry to plug it, but we will be talking about this on Hype, Hypable’s podcast, as well tomorrow.

Eric: Yeah, I know we have an Alohomora! scheduled as well about it. What else are we… we’ve got GOO. We’re probably going to be mentioning it on all of our podcasts, let’s be honest.

Andrew: [laughs] Yeah.

Eric: This is pretty huge news! [laughs]

Andrew: It is, it is. Thank you everybody for listening. Micah and Eric, thanks for getting on at the last minute.

Micah: No problem.

Andrew: Send in some emails. We’ve still got the email account, mugglecast at gmail dot com. Send in your theories. What kind of plotline would you like to see in this Fantastic Beasts movie? How about some casting? Make some casting choices for Newt as well.

Eric: And furthermore, what creatures do you want to see in these movies? Go pick up your copy of the book.

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: Tell us what creatures you want. I have always wanted to see, for instance, the Lethifold.

Micah: That’s what this is all about. It’s all to promote sales of the book.

[Andrew laughs]

Micah: They were down. Now people are going to go out and buy it like crazy.

Eric: Well, Comic Relief has to be relieved, if you can say that. I mean, this is brand-new life breathing into the book. I’m sure they got a call from Jo saying, “Okay, this is… you might want to print a little bit more copies.”

Andrew: Yeah.

Eric: So, that is amazing. And this seems to be a real passion project for Jo, much like Cuckoo’s Calling was because it was so secretive, but it seems to have been just worked out between Jo and the CEO of Warner Bros., this Kevin Tsujihara, who I guess would be the guy you need to talk to, to greenlight this sort of thing. I’m just blown away that this news blew up like this. This has been amazing.

Andrew: Yeah. Same. I’m in shock. [laughs] This has been a very long two hours of shock.

[Eric laughs]

Show Close

[Show music begins]

Andrew: Well again, thanks everybody for listening. We’ll keep you updated on all the developments through social media:,,, mugglecast at gmail dot com. Thanks everybody for listening. I’m Andrew Sims.

Eric: I’m Eric Scull.

Micah: And I’m Micah Tannenbaum.

Andrew: We’ll see you next time down the road! [laughs] Goodbye.

Micah: All right. Bye.

[Show music continues]