Industry figures predicting the worst for ‘Fantastic Beasts’

fantastic beasts

Warner Bros.’ Fantastic Beasts series launched to a degree of interest and intrigue in 2016, but now, amid casting controversies, Rowling’s remarks on gender, and a lack of charming characters, some think it may have lost its business bite.

“This is their Star Wars franchise. You expect more. This is supposed to be a crown jewel and it’s not behaving like one. The only way to put Harry Potter back on the map is to go back to the original characters. That’s where the money is at the box office.”

Exhibitor relations analyst Jeff Bock made the above comment to Variety in a recent article about the series ahead of Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore’s release Friday. The report noted franchises can and do have issues, but the vortex of events here have made the studio consider axing the five planned films early. Steven Galloway, the dean of Chapman University’s film school, said too much has come at once to bode well.

“There have been franchises that have been hit with problems, but not like this. This is a confluence of events.”

On Rotten Tomatoes, the latest series release has a 58 percent positive rating, a 22 percent jump from its predecessor. As for the original characters returning, though director Chris Columbus has been interested in a Harry Potter and the Cursed Child theatrical adaptation, we reported late last month Daniel Radcliffe said he was not interested right now, but caveated with a “never say never,” further caveat-ing that he would need a Star Wars-level break like Mark Hamill’s before returning.