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Composer James Newton Howard confirms involvement with ‘Fantastic Beasts 2’, talks about scoring process

James Newton Howard will score 'Fantastic Beasts 2'

James Newton Howard will score ‘Fantastic Beasts 2’

A new interview with James Newton Howard confirms the composer will score the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them sequel. The composer also talks about the scoring process for the current Fantastic Beasts film, following the legend that is John Williams, and career highlights.

Asked about whether scoring a film like Fantastic Beasts was a daunting prospect, Newton Howard said, “Absolutely. I was very nervous. Well, I don’t know if nervous is quite the word. I think to do anything out of one’s comfort zone, there has to be some aspect of it that feels inspiring and challenging in a positive way … I think I understood the world, I understood the script, I had great conversations with David Yates, and I felt prepared to dive in.”

And on following John Williams (who scored the first three Harry Potter films): “I would describe inheriting a franchise where John Williams has written unforgettable thematic material for the last 15 years and being asked to re-create the melodic world as slightly uncomfortable. I seek those kinds of jobs out … we tip our hat and acknowledge in a respectful and witty wink and a nod kind of way to “Hedwig’s Theme”. (Aside: I [Andy] counted three references in the score.)

Finally, Newton Howard talked about the scoring process itself — it took seven months — and confirmed his involvement with at least the next Fantastic Beasts film: “David and I have talked about it. I’m certainly doing the next one, he’s asked me to do it. We had a pretty incredible time together on this one, so I will certainly be doing that one. Beyond that, who knows?”

Cast and crew walk the black carpet at the ‘Fantastic Beasts’ world premiere

Earlier tonight, cast and crew of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them walked the black carpet at the film’s world premiere in New York City. Check out photos below, courtesy of Warner Bros.

Stanislav Ianevski (Viktor Krum) talks about ‘Harry Potter’ love triangle cut from ‘Deathly Hallows’

The Viktor Krum actor reveals a "love triangle plot" between he, Hermione and Ron was cut from the 'Deathly Hallows' films

The Viktor Krum actor reveals a “love triangle plot” between he, Hermione and Ron was cut from the ‘Deathly Hallows’ films

Stanislav Ianevski, the Bulgarian actor who played Quidditch superstar and Durmstrang student Viktor Krum in both Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Part 1, recently spoke to Entertainment Weekly about his roles in the ‘Potter’ films.

Interestingly, Ianevski spoke of a “love triangle plot”, conceived by director David Yates, and not present in the Deathly Hallows book.

Says the actor, “[the director] invented a new story that wasn’t in the books, a love triangle between Viktor Krum, Hermione, and Ron … but that was cut out of the film because it obviously didn’t fit with all the horrible things that happen in the last book.”

Ianevski goes on to talk about a dance scene at the wedding: “We did a new dance scene, I sort of stole [Hermione] from Ron. … She remembered our old times, Viktor was acting like a gentleman again, happy to see her, she was happy to see him. Ron was sitting on the side, was jealous, and then Viktor took her to the dance floor.”

And how would the love triangle have ended? Victory for Bulgaria? The actor jokes, “Viktor would obviously win and then live happily on forever with Hermione”.

You can listen to Ianevski’s interview through EW’s Binge podcast, which also includes an interview with ‘Potter’ costume designer Jany Temime, by clicking here.

Johnny Depp will reportedly play Gellert Grindelwald in the ‘Fantastic Beasts’ series of ‘Harry Potter’ films

Johnny Depp will reportedly join the 'Harry Potter' cast as Gellert Grindelwald

Johnny Depp will reportedly join the ‘Harry Potter’ cast as Gellert Grindelwald

Deadline is reporting that Hollywood actor Johnny Depp will join the cast of the second Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them film in a “co-starring role”. Depp reportedly has a “tiny” role in the first Fantastic Beasts film, released later this month, with rampant speculation that he will play dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald.

Depp is of course famous for his engrossing character roles in films such as Pirates of the Caribbean, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Sweeney Todd and Alice in Wonderland. 

J.K. Rowling announced last month that the Fantastic Beasts series would span a total of five films, and director David Yates confirmed that a plot involving a young Dumbledore and his friendship turned rivalry with dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald will feature heavily.

Grindelwald is of course famous to ‘Potter’ fans for his role in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, where we learned about his childhood relationship with Albus Dumbledore, their desire to find the Deathly Hallows, and their ultimate rivalry. This culminated in Dumbledore’s defeat of the dark wizard in 1945. Grindelwald was played by actor Jamie Campbell Bower in the Deathly Hallows films.

We don’t know yet how heavily a Dumbledore/Grindelwald plot will be woven into the first Fantastic Beasts film, but this poster released by Warner Bros. hints at a connection between Graves, Director of Magical Security at MACUSA (Colin Farrell) and the Deathly Hallows symbol (the wand, stone and cloak).

The report also notes that Yates will return to direct the second installment, and Eddie Redmayne will reprise his role as magizoologist Newt Scamander. The second film is due to hit cinemas in November 2018, and will begin shooting next year.

Listen to ‘Pie or Strudel’ from James Newton Howard’s ‘Fantastic Beasts’ soundtrack

A new track from James Newton Howard’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them soundtrack, titled “Pie or Strudel / Escaping Queenie and Tina’s Place” has been revealed. Check it out below.

Range of ‘Harry Potter’ chibi plush toys to be released this year, more to come in 2017

A collection of Harry Potter Japanese chibi plush toys will soon be available internationally, thanks to Huckleberry, who also let us know about the release.

According to the press announcement, “the initial release will consist of Harry Potter and Hedwig the owl as 8” plush and a 5” beanie plush line consisting of Harry Potter, Hermione Granger, Ron Weasley, Draco Malfoy, Dobby and Hedwig the owl. More lines will be released in 2017.”

“Muggles will be able to find the Harry Potter plush in limited quantities at the following retail locations this holiday season, beginning around Thanksgiving: Hot Topic, Barnes & Noble, GameStop, Books-A-Million and Toys R Us.”

You can get your hands on one of these plush toys by clicking here.

Looking for ‘Potter’ themed Christmas gifts? We’ve got you covered.