Why Is ‘Fantastic Beasts’ A Failure?

by Jeremy Spirogis
J.K. Rowling at the

If the Fantastic Beasts sequence is any indication, the Wizarding World is in hassle.

J.Okay. Rowling’s Harry Potter grew to become far more than a best-selling e book sequence. What began on the web page in 1997 quickly exploded into some of the profitable movie sequence of all time and a multimedia empire. In reality, the fan base is so devoted that, apart from Star Wars, few different geek properties can really examine.

But after the eight-film Harry Potter sequence, Rowling and Warner Bros. wanted a strategy to hold the model alive. The 2016 launch of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them — starring Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne — appeared like a chief alternative to develop the story followers already know. So why is it slowly disapparating earlier than followers’ very eyes?

J.K. Rowling at the 'Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald'
J.Okay. Rowling on the ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’ | Ian West/PA Images by way of Getty Images

The Wizarding World lived on past ‘Harry Potter’

Set in 1926, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them follows Newt Scamander (Redmayne), an skilled in magical creatures. In half as a consequence of its interval setting, the preliminary movie doesn’t prominently function any characters beforehand seen within the Harry Potter sequence. With that storyline tapped out, the newly rebranded “Wizarding World” aimed to discover a new start line.

Based partially on Rowling’s 2001 Harry Potter tie-in information e book, the movie additionally marked the writer’s first screenwriting credit score. Director David Yates — who directed the ultimate 4 Harry Potter movies — signed on for Fantastic Beasts. But regardless of Yates, Rowling, and Redmayne’s involvement, the movie didn’t elicit the identical type of pleasure as its predecessors.

The first Fantastic Beasts film earned stable critiques however nonetheless fell in need of expectations on the field workplace. Earning $814 million worldwide, the film solely outperformed 2004’s Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban and never by a lot. Even with inflation on its facet, the brand new Wizarding Wizard sequence kicked off with simply an $18 million edge over the weakest Harry Potter movie.

The numbers simply don’t add up

The sequel — Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald — did even much less business on the field workplace, bringing in a franchise-low $655 million worldwide. While that quantity might sound stable for cheaper productions, the movie’s $200 million price range makes the outlook a lot rougher for Fantastic Beasts.

The sequence dwindling field workplace returns are of even higher concern when considering what Warner Bros. and Rowling have deliberate. Some time again, followers realized the Fantastic Beasts story was envisioned to increase to 5 movies. But the revenue margin is shrinking so quick. Some trade pundits have puzzled if the studio would think about slicing that scope down a bit.

Yet, by any measure, the industrial efficiency of this newest offshoot of the Harry Potter franchise is disappointing. Once upon a time, Fantastic Beasts appeared like the simple inheritor to the previous sequence as Warner Bros.’ crown jewel. Yet, the way in which it stands now, the billion-dollar, Oscar-winning Joker places the DC Extended Universe in a much better place.

The prequel drawback that plagues ‘Fantastic Beasts’

While we are able to’t ensure, it’s exhausting to not ponder why Harry Potter followers — affectionately often called Potterheads — seem like shedding curiosity in Fantastic Beasts. Part of the problem most likely lies in how disconnected the brand new sequence initially appeared. Yet, even the introduction of acquainted characters like Jude Law’s youthful Albus Dumbledore hasn’t helped.

Perhaps the underlying drawback is similar that has beforehand plagued prequel sequence for each the Star Wars and The Lords of the Rings movies. Fans already know the place the story goes. There’s no dramatic pressure in questioning how Dumbledore and Grindelwald’s (Johnny Depp) last showdown will go. Without a way of discovery, the sequence is already misplaced.

Moreover, the Fantastic Beasts films have carried all of the unsuitable classes ahead. Placing spectacle and lore-building forward of characters and story by no means works. Neither does counting on viewers goodwill. Just as established followers know what’s within the playing cards for a lot of characters, the brand new movies haven’t set themselves aside in an fascinating sufficient strategy to win over newcomers.

Sure, references to established Harry Potter lore will most likely proceed to recur in Fantastic Beasts. And perhaps Warner Bros. will cross its fingers and full Rowling’s deliberate five-movie arc. In the meantime, increasingly more longtime followers may abandon the sequence, at the very least till Warner Bros. courts Daniel Radcliffe and firm again for the inevitable reboot.

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