Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Trailer Introduces Us to a Hogwarts Reject

By  · Published on April 12th, 2016

We got our first glimpse of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them nearly four month ago with a teaser that laid out the basics of the plot — in the early 20th century, someone has crossed the ocean from England to America and entered New York City with a case full of magical creatures. Worse, some of them have apparently escaped.

Now a somewhat more complete picture has arrived via the first full trailer that introduces our protagonist, Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne) along with a little bit of his history. It seems Newt has been expelled from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, and rather than earn an online degree or attend a community college he heads off to America with his beasts in tow. Take a gander at the latest chapter from the magical wold of J.K. Rowling below.

Well, it very much looks like a Harry Potter movie sans Harry Potter and friends.

Director David Yates is no stranger to Rowling’s world having already directed four of the Harry Potter films, but this is the author’s first stab at scripting one herself. Rowling’s screenplay is loosely based on her own book of the same name, but as it’s an incredibly slim volume more focused on being a reference tome than a narrative she’s clearly had to liven things up a bit in the story department. Story and character are her bread and butter though, especially where magic is concerned, so we expect this adventure to be every bit as immersive as those she’s most famous for.

While the presence of magic and muggles remains alongside all manner of creative terminology, the big difference here is the focus on adults. Gone are the pre-teens growing into their abilities and responsibilities, and in their place sits a mid-thirties Redmayne with short pants and disheveled hair. Readers who grew up with Potter should be down with it all, but we’ll be curious to see if it’s able to grab the young viewers previously prone to repeat viewings.

There’s still plenty here for those of us far less familiar with Rowling’s writings as the film looks to be a fun adventure with a stellar supporting cast. Ezra Miller, Samantha Morton, Ron Perlman, and Katherine Waterston are all appealing performers, but I’m most excited to see Colin Farrell back in action with what I’m pretending is a crossover with Winter’s Tale. 1920’s New York City, magic, and a questionable haircut? Surely this is no coincidence. Please god let this not just be a coincidence…

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them opens November 18th.

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Rob Hunter has been writing for Film School Rejects since before you were born, which is weird seeing as he's so damn young. He's our Chief Film Critic and Associate Editor and lists 'Broadcast News' as his favorite film of all time. Feel free to say hi if you see him on Twitter @FakeRobHunter.