Dan Fogler Talks Jacob


Pottermore have released another tid-bit interview, this time with actor Dan Fogler who plays Jacob in the franchise.

While we don’t get any new information on his character, we do get some brand new HD stills, which can be see in our gallery:





‘If the Harry Potter universe calls, you don’t hesitate,’ says Dan Fogler, in his trademark gravelly Brooklyn accent. ‘If you have an opportunity to be a part of it, you jump on, hold on and stay on for as long as you can’.

The actor, who plays No-Maj Jacob Kowalski in J.K. Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, thought it was ‘a long shot’ when he went to audition for the role.

‘I put a little costume together, made of what I thought Jacob would wear. You know, suspenders and cut-off hobo gloves and a patchy newsboy cap…’ – Dan chortles heartily at the memory – ‘I was very furry and shaggy. So, I went in and I felt really good about the audition. I flew out to the UK and did a screen test, but then my agent told me, “Well they’re going to look at a bunch of people.” You know, “Next time champ, don’t worry about it!” I had heard about a few people auditioning [for the part of Jacob], so I put it out of my mind.’

Picture the scene: July 2015 and Dan was at San Diego Comic-Com selling his own comic books on the packed show floor. Hauling great boxes of his work through the heaving crowd, the last thing he was thinking about was Fantastic Beasts.

‘I just felt very low, in throngs of costumed people pulling towards me. I was making my way upstream like a lone salmon,’ he says.

That’s when his phone rang.

‘I got the call and they were like, “Hey, you’ve got the part.” It was amazing. It was life-changing right then and there. A bolt of lightning. It was just incredible, like everything that came before had been a dream.’

 Comic-Con 2016 was a little bit different for Dan. This time he went from panel discussion to autograph signing to a Facebook Live Q&A with Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterston, Alison Sudol, Colin Farrell and Ezra Miller. He watched as a brand new trailer for Fantastic Beasts aired for the first time in front of thousands of screaming fans. He found himself smack-bang in the middle of the fandom for one of the biggest movies of the year.

Dan has built a career in comedy, music and cult horror, acting alongside actors like Christopher Walken, Jennifer Aniston, Jessica Alba and Aaron Eckhart. He won a Tony Award in 2005 for his performance in the Broadway musical The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee; he is one-half of comedy rock band 2nd Rate and his voice acting credits include Kung Fu Panda and American Dad.

‘You know what’s been interesting about my career?’ he says. ‘It’s been this slow rise with long plateaus. I’ve had time to taste fame but I definitely lean towards being the kind of actor where I’m happy to be able to walk down the street and go to the corner store and not get hassled. I don’t know what it’ll be like when the movie comes out. All I know is that I will try to be myself. I’ll probably just hunker down with my family and do some baking.’

Dan Fogler cherishes the story of how he came to be Jacob Kowalski. Who, by the way, didn’t exactly look like Dan had imagined the day of his audition. As it turns out, Academy Award-winning costume designer Colleen Atwood had other ideas for his character’s outfit.

‘Oh, it was nothing like what I thought,’ says Dan. ‘I came dressed as a newsboy – that’s what I had available. But what Colleen put together was very close to a [Charlie] Chaplin suit, with the waistcoats and the layers. There were different coloured buttons on it and little coloured fringes. I imagined it was his only suit; a borrowed suit that didn’t really fit right, but it’s all Jacob had. Costumes like that feed your character so much information.’

His Chaplin-like suit told Dan a lot about Jacob: he lived in one of Dan’s favourite eras – the 1920s; he lived on the Lower East Side of New York; he was an ordinary man who got swept up the beautiful chaos that happens when magic is present. In that sense, Dan and Jacob are not so different.

‘It was really just delicious,’ says Dan about working on a fantasy film. ‘I was surrounded by amazing, top notch, talented people and it was just a pleasure to come to work every day just to see what everyone brought to the table. In every scene there was a nugget of real magic.

‘With acting, you have this force on the silver screen and it can hit a person – or lots of people – in the audience and it moves them. That’s magic. I don’t know how else to describe it. It’s magic.’

Posted on October 18, 2016

Hogwarts In The Snow


Warner Bros Studio Tour London: The Making of Harry Potter is bringing back one of its most magical events of the year – Hogwarts in the Snow.

This Christmas feature will run from Saturday 19th November right up until Sunday 29th January 2017:

This festive season, Harry Potter fans are invited to experience Christmas time at Hogwarts and discover how film-makers created fire, ice and snow that never melts as Warner Bros. Studio Tour London undergoes a magical makeover for Hogwarts in the Snow.

From 19th November – 29th January, visitors will have the opportunity to see the Harry Potter film series’ most iconic sets decorated for festive scenes. Christmas trees will line the Great Hall, the Gryffindor common room will be dressed for the season and a blanket of filmmaking snow will be meticulously applied to the majestic Hogwarts castle model.

After stepping onto the original stone floor of the iconic Great Hall, visitors will spot wreaths, garlands and trees decked with golden baubles that are topped with witches on miniature broomsticks. The long dining tables will be dressed as they were for seasonal feasts at Hogwarts with prop versions of roast turkeys, hams studded with cherries and even flaming Christmas puddings.

The Gryffindor Common Room and Boys’ Dormitory will be decorated with the original props including handmade Christmas cards, some of which were made by the cast members during production.

Fireplaces throughout the Studio Tour (including those in the Leaky Cauldron and Great Hall) will be ‘lit’ with special effects fire, created by John Richardson and the SFX team using a combination of water vapour and lighting effects. Visitors will also see the hand-knitted jumpers that Molly Weasley gave Ron and Harry for Christmas in Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. Other costumes on display will include one of the first Christmas presents Harry ever received at Hogwarts, his Invisibility Cloak and, for the first time, Madame Maxime’s costume from Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.

The Hogwarts castle model will be transformed for the occasion by a team led by Model Effects Supervisor José Granell, who worked on the Harry Potter film series. During filming, a member of the crew climbed aboard an elevated work platform and sprinkled the ‘snow’ mixture of granulated paper and grains of salt onto the model by hand with a sieve – like dusting sugar onto a cake. The same process will be used at the Studio Tour this November. Visitors will even be able to touch samples of the different types of ‘snow’ used during production, each selected for its ability to float like falling snow, crunch under foot or glisten in the light like ice.

Tickets for the event must be pre-booked & you can do so by following this link!

& with Fantastic Beasts being released the day before, what better way to continue the magic!

Posted on October 17, 2016

Full Character Descriptions


Thanks to Fantastic Beasts UK (official) we now have full character descriptions of all main Fantastic Beasts characters:


NEWT SCAMANDER (Eddie Redmayne)

Newt Scamander is a Magizoologist who has been traveling the world to find and document magical creatures, hoping to educate the wizarding world about why they are important and need to be protected. In his travels, he has rescued a wide variety of beasts, great and small, which he keeps in a case that magically provides more than enough room for the menagerie he cares for and protects. Newt is an outsider, a bit awkward, and more comfortable with creatures than his fellow wizards and witches. Hailing from England, he was once a student at Hogwarts but was expelled for endangering human life with a beast. Yet there was one professor who fought for him, a certain Albus Dumbledore. No one could have imagined then that Newt would someday write one of Hogwarts’ most important textbooks: Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

TINA GOLDSTEIN (Katherine Waterston)

Tina (short for Porpentina) Goldstein is a smart and determined witch who lives in New York and works for MACUSA (Magical Congress of the United States of America). She was once an Auror but was demoted to a menial desk job after overstepping her duties when her heart overruled her head and she used unauthorized magic. She wants desperately to regain her status as an investigator, which puts her directly in the path of a visiting wizard named Newt Scamander. Tina is very close to her younger sister and roommate, Queenie.


Queenie Goldstein is Tina’s vivacious and slightly quirky younger sister, who is undeniably beautiful, but there is much more to her than meets the eye. Queenie works a menial desk job at MACUSA in the same department as Tina, but she doesn’t have her sister’s driving ambition to be an Auror. In fact, truth be told, the free-spirited Queenie would prefer not to work at all. Queenie has a good heart and would do anything for her sister. She is also a Legilimens, meaning she can read minds.


Jacob Kowalski is a No-Maj (American for Muggle) who works in a cannery but dreams of becoming a baker, making fresh and delicious treats. Unable to secure a loan, Jacob seems resigned to his fate, but everything changes when he encounters Newt Scamander and is inadvertently swept up in the mayhem caused by Newt’s magical beasts. At first, Jacob thinks he must be imagining things, but soon realizes he is on an adventure beyond even his wildest dreams.


Percival Graves is an Auror and the Director of Magical Security at MACUSA, making him one of its highest-ranking and most respected officials. When Graves discovers that Newt Scamander has made an unauthorized trip to New York with a case filled with forbidden magical creatures, he is very suspicious of his intentions and concerned about the potential to break the American wizarding world’s most important law: the Statute of Secrecy. Graves seems to demonstrate care and compassion to the young and particularly vulnerable Credence Barebone. But to what end?

MARY LOU BAREBONE (Samantha Morton)

Mary Lou Barebone is a No-Maj and the outspoken leader of the New Salem Philanthropic Society (NSPS), otherwise known as the Second Salemers. Bent on exterminating all magic, Mary Lou fiercely crusades against the wizards and witches she is convinced live among them. She enlists in the effort her adopted children, who all live in fear of her wrath.


Credence Barebone, the adopted middle child of Mary Lou Barebone, appears withdrawn, extremely shy and far more vulnerable than his two sisters. Credence is defenseless against the abuse that comes in response to the slightest infraction of Mary Lou’s strict rules. But his loneliness also makes him susceptible to the manipulation of Percival Graves, who has taken a personal interest in Credence.


Chastity Barebone is Mary Lou’s adopted eldest daughter, who dutifully follows her mother’s rules and helps in the cause of eradicating magic and those who practice it.

MODESTY BAREBONE (Faith Wood-Blagrove)

Modesty Barebone is Mary Lou’s youngest adopted daughter. A bit precocious, she manages to hide her disobedience from her strict mother, aware of what happens to her brother, Credence.Playing her favorite game of hopscotch, she chants anti-witchcraft rhymes. But out of sight of her mother and older sister, she rebelliously scatters the Second Salemers leaflets to the four winds.

HENRY SHAW, SR. (Jon Voight)

Henry Shaw, Sr. is a newspaper magnate with two sons. His elder son, and his pride and joy, is a senator, who is running for re-election. His younger son, Langdon, is something of a failure in his eyes, so Henry Sr. is dismissive of him when he tries to call his father’s attention to recent strange occurrences in New York City.

LANGDON SHAW (Ronan Raftery)

Langdon Shaw is the younger son of newspaper magnate Henry Shaw Sr. Unlike his older brother, who is a senator, Langdon has never lived up to his father’s expectations, but is always trying to win his approval. When he learns of a series of mysterious events in New York City, which point to something magical, he brings it to his father, thinking he’s found the story of the century. However, his father and brother dismiss him out of hand.


Senator Shaw, the eldest son of newspaper magnate Henry Shaw, Sr., is running for re-election in New York. With Prohibition still the law of the land, he rails against the speakeasies and pool rooms and the corruption he believes is behind them. Like his father, he doesn’t think much of his younger brother, Langdon, and scoffs at the notion of some magical being terrorizing the city.

You can follow the official site on both Facebook & Twitter!

Posted on October 12, 2016

Cast Talk David Yates


Pottermore have just released an interview with the Fantastic Beasts cast where they discuss director David Yates.

In addition to this, they have released four brand new movie stills which can be seen in HI-RES in our gallery:




‘David has such a lovely manner,’ Eddie Redmayne tells me. ‘He has an incredible kindness and warmth. He brings out the best in people. When you’re the director on a film like this, you are juggling so many departments. It’s like you are having to man this huge liner of a ship.

‘From an actor’s point of view, you can get a little worried that with so much else going on… will the director be focused on making sure the performances are right? What’s wonderful about David is that, for all that chaos, he is the strongest of acting directors. I’ve just enjoyed his company so much.’

That much is obvious when you see David on set, with Eddie or any of his actors. There’s genuine joy in his direction that’s infectious, particularly when he describes what he’s envisaging.
‘He is a storyteller and very visually descriptive,’ beams Alison Sudol. ‘He can see everything and he makes you feel like a little kid listening to a bedtime story when he’s telling you about a scene.

‘He’s very gentle with us. He allows us a lot of freedom and space… but you feel the responsibility because you’ve been given that freedom. He’s like, “I trust you.” He’s always wonderful, he never raises his voice… He knows what he wants and is very clear. He gets the performance he needs, but is never anything but lovely about it.’
Part of his ease working on this particular film may come from the fact that David has worked within J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world before. As Katherine Waterston tells me, he knows the territory.

‘The real thing that trickles down from the top is his faith in the process because he’s been here before,’ she says. ‘Usually you’re all going into new territory, you’re like, “Is there going to be quicksand round the corner? Are there wolves waiting to attack?” Whereas he’s like, “We’re going to take a left here, avoid the quicksand.” You know, he’s really got this kind of shorthand and a comfort with the world, he’s not precious with it. There’s something really comforting in that.’

David Yates manages, by the sound of it, to be both comforting and inspiring.
‘He creates this playground where – yes, we’re working on one of the largest franchises in the world – he makes it feel like it’s this little intimate movie,’ Dan Fogler tells me.

‘You know, [David]’s got this energy. He’s got an amazing eye and I trust him – he’s always right! You think you may be feeling it and then you look at the camera and he’s telling you what’s best – and he’s always right! He’s an actor’s director. It’s the best creative experience I’ve ever had with a director. That man is an angel in my life; he changed my life.’
According to Ezra Miller, David’s talents are almost supernatural.

‘You should know that David Yates is a psychic,’ he says, with conviction. ‘I’m telling you that man is telepathic. David’s directing has been flawless. That’s the word. He is connected to the creativity of the universe. He is inside your mind when he is directing. He bounds up to you with these bright, shining eyes, happy like a child, and tells you exactly what to do. He’s a joy. He’s feeling exactly what needs to happen but is as cool as a cucumber, because he knows you can do it and he shows you how.

‘This actually happened,’ Ezra continues. ‘So, there’s a part we’re shooting where it’s dark and I really need to draw on my own life experiences, so I’m holding these memories in my mind during a take to get me to the right place for Credence. When we cut, David comes up to me and his one note is, “I think we’re getting too personal here. That was too Ezra and we’ve just got to get back to Credence.” I promise you, the man is a psychic.’
Psychic, angel, storyteller: whoever you speak to about David, they are insistent about how kind he is. When we meet on set, I ask if he knows this about his reputation.

‘I think I get it from my mum,’ he smiles, broadly. ‘You know, it’s such a fun thing to be doing, making these films. It’s never stressful. And kind? How could you not be? Why wouldn’t you enjoy this process and the game we get to play together? It’s so much fun. It’s like being nine years old and someone gives you a big train set and they say, “Go on, have fun.” And so you do. “And remember to bring your favourite friends to play!” The studio’s supportive, my producer is lovely, J.K. Rowling is lovely, my cast is lovely… Everyone is very kind, too, so it just kind of works. It’s easy.’

He tips his navy blue hat modestly, as though making a gargantuan movie like Fantastic Beasts is the easiest thing in the world. Maybe it is easy, if you run your set with kindness and a little bit of mind-reading. Maybe it’s just a joy.

Posted on October 11, 2016

Character Posters


Entertainment Weekly have released 9 brand new character posters for Fantastic Beasts, all of which can be seen in hi-res in our gallery by clicking right here!


Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander
J.K. Rowling’s new hero is a former Hogwarts Hufflepuff and a lifelong advocate for magical creatures. Expelled from Hogwarts for “endangering human life with a beast,” Newt now travels the globe as a magizoologist, finding and documenting the wizarding world’s many magical beasts. His travels take him to New York City in 1926, but soon after he arrives in the United States with his case full of creatures, several escape, wreaking havoc throughout the city and threatening to expose the witches and wizards of New York.


Katherine Waterston as Tina Goldstein
Porpentina Goldstein — that’s Tina for short — was once an Auror for the Magical Congress of the United States of America, but she was demoted to the wand permit division after “her heart overruled her head and she used unauthorized magic.” She lives with her younger sister, Queenie.


Alison Sudol as Queen Goldstein
Queenie is Tina’s quirky younger sister and roommate, who works alongside her in the wand permit department at MACUSA. Unlike her ambitious sister, who dreams of taking back her job as an Auror, Queenie is more of a free spirit who doesn’t care too much about her career. (Although the two sisters have slightly different personalities, they’re fiercely loyal and would do anything for each other.) Queenie is also a Legilimens, meaning that she can read minds.


Dan Fogler as Jacob Kowalski
Jacob Kowalski is a No-Maj (which is what witches and wizards call Muggles in America), and he works in a cannery. He dreams of becoming a baker but is unable to secure a loan, and his life changes forever when he meets Newt and his menagerie of magical creatures.


Carmen Ejogo as Seraphina Picquery
Seraphina Picquery became the president of MACUSA in 1920. She’s a powerful and formidable witch, dedicated to maintaining the secrecy of the American wizarding community.

Colin Farrell as Percival Graves
As MACUSA’s Director of Magical Security, Percival Graves is one of the highest-ranking wizarding officials in New York, and he sets out to track down Newt and his case of magical creatures, concerned that Newt might break the International Statute of Secrecy. He also connects with the young Credence Barebone, showing him compassion.

And is that…?

It is! Interestingly, Graves’ poster includes a necklace with the Deathly Hallows symbol on it, suggesting that somehow, the mysterious Auror has a connection the Hallows. Is he just someone who believes in the Resurrection Stone, the Elder Wand, and the Invisibility Cloak, like Xenophilius Lovegood? (It was Lovegood who introduced Harry to the concept of the Hallows, after Harry spotted him wearing a similar necklace at Bill and Fleur’s wedding.)

Or does this necklace suggest something more sinister? The notorious dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald was gaining power in Europe in 1926, and he co-opted the Hallows symbol as his own personal mark. In the last Fantastic Beasts trailer, we saw Seraphina Picquery speculating about whether Grindelwald could be turning his eye to America. Could Graves be in league with the dark wizard overseas?


Samantha Morton as Mary Lou Barebone
Mary Lou Barebone is a No-Maj and the fanatical leader of the New Salem Philanthropic Society (a.k.a. the Second Salemers), having dedicated her life to seeking out and destroying witches and wizards. She’s enlisted her three adopted children — two daughters and a son — in her crusade against magic, and all three of them “live in fear of her wrath.”


Ezra Miller as Credence Barebone
Credence Barebone is the most withdrawn and shy of Mary Lou’s three adopted children, and he live in fear of her tyrannical rules. Soon, however, he finds himself befriended by the manipulative Percival Graves, who takes “a personal interest” in Credence.

Notably, the background of Credence’s poster includes a No-Maj wanted poster that claims Newt and Jacob are wanted for bank robbery.

Ron Perlman as Gnarlak
Ron Perlman voices Gnarlak, a goblin gangster who runs a Harlem speakeasy (1926 is right in the middle of Prohibition, after all). We don’t know that much about him yet, but his character poster gives us a look inside his establishment, complete with bottles of alcohol, a setup for a band, and wanted posters that claim Tina and Newt have violated the International Statute of Secrecy. And in the lower left corner, is that Picket, Newt’s favorite Bowtruckle?



What do you think of the new posters? We’ll be analysing over on Twitter, so come join us!


Posted on October 10, 2016

New York Premiere November 10th


Thanks to Portus for letting us know that SunInsider, part of the Baltimore Sun newspaper, is running a giveaway competition for two tickets to the New York Fantastic Beasts Premiere.

The paper is claiming the world premiere will be taking place at Alice Tully Hall at the Lincoln Center in New York on November 10th.



Note this has not yet been confirmed by Warner Bros, but as the London premiere falls on the 15th, the date seems very likely.

Posted on October 8, 2016

Fantastic Beasts TV Spots


Warner Bros has released videos of the three Fantastic Beasts TV spots in the run-up to the movie’s cinematic release on November 18th:


While the first two have the exact same footage and only differ in the text at the end, the third takes a darker look at the film’s running theme.

What do you think of the tv spots? Let us know over on Twitter!

Posted on October 7, 2016