J.K. Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald screenplay was published simultaneously with the worldwide release of the movie. We went through it to see if there’s any additional information to digest.
Like the screenplay for the first movie, The Crimes of Grindelwald’s script (buy it here) does not include any deleted scenes. It does include a forward from director David Yates, who raves about Rowling’s writing abilities.
It also provides the exact spelling and descriptions of spells that we hadn’t encountered before in The Wizarding World. And most importantly, the script offers a glimpse into what Rowling and her characters are thinking in key scenes.
New story, new spells! Here are the new spells found in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald:
- Ventus: A spell to create a hurricane-force wind, used by Newt to repel the Auror Stebbins.
- Nebulus: Creates a swirling fog. Used by Dumbledore to stay under cover, descends over London.
- Surgito: Removes a love enchantment spell. Used by Newt on Jacob to remove Queenie’s enchantment.
- Papyrus Reparo: Repairs a torn up postcard.
- Appare Vestigium: Tracking spell that “materializes as a swirl of gold” and shows “traces of recent magical activity.” Used by Newt to track beasts and Tina.
- Avenseguim: Takes an object owned by someone and turns it into a way to track that person down. Newt used the spell on the feather from Kama’s cap to find him.
- Protego Diabolica: Creates a protective circle — those who are truly on Grindelwald’s side can walk through the flame. Notably, Rowling describes the flame twice as a “black fire,” but in the movie it’s blue.
- Finite: A spell to counter Protego Diabolica. Used by Flamel and friends. We’ve seen this one before, but not in this way.
Takeaways from Rowling’s writing in the ‘Crimes of Grindelwald’ scriptbook
Below are a mix of moments that I believe are important to the future of the Fantastic Beasts series:
1: Dumbledore foreshadowing his brother, Aurelius Dumbledore (Credence)? Early on in the film while Dumbledore is talking to Newt about Credence, the Hogwarts Professor says that “An Obscurus grows in the absence of love as a dark twin, an only friend. If Credence has a real brother or sister out there who can take its place, he might yet be saved.”
Does Dumbledore know that they’re brothers? Rowling is certainly foreshadowing the twist to come. Dumbledore does say in this same scene that we don’t know who Credence is, but he could be lying to Newt so as to not shock him.
2: Foreshadowing a death? In the scene where Jacob and Newt are down in the latter’s House of Beasts, Rowling writes that “an Augurey caws mournfully at Jacob as he walks past.” It didn’t seem very loud in the movie, but the fact that Rowling is writing this is worrying. We know that an Augurey’s cry foretells death. Is she foreshadowing Jacob’s demise? Ugh.
3: Dumbledore’s feelings for Grindelwald: When Dumbledore is confronted by Travers about Grindelwald, Rowling explains how Dumbledore is feeling:
Dumbledore is looking at the pictures. These memories are agony. He is full of remorse but, almost worse: Nostalgia for the only time in his life he felt fully understood.
This is interesting insight into how Dumbledore is feeling about Grindelwald.
4: Nicholas Flamel’s Rolodex: The book that Nicholas Flamel opens towards the end of the movie has a Phoenix on the cover. As Flamel is flicking through the pages, Rowling writes that one of them is a page for Albus, but “Dumbledore’s portrait is blank.”
I’ve seen the movie twice and did not notice a page for Dumbledore. It’s interesting that Rowling specifically included him in the script. This book appears to index a group of people similar to the Order of the Phoenix who are fighting Grindelwald. Here’s what the cover looks like (courtesy graphic designers MinaLima):
The person Flamel speaks to, by the way, is a “young American professor at Ilvermorny” named Eulalie Hicks, played by former Daily Show correspondent and huge Harry Potter fan Jessica Williams.
5: Leta loves both Newt and Theseus: It’s suggested in the movie through some clever camera work, but the script confirms it: During the battle against Grindelwald, Leta says “I love you” to both Newt and Theseus:
She looks toward both Theseus and Newt, who are watching her, stunned.
Leta: I love you.
She could very well have different definitions of love for Newt versus Theseus, but it’s still equal parts interesting and heartbreaking.
6: Regretting the blood pact: In the discussion between Newt and Dumbledore at the end of the movie, Rowling writes that Dumbledore regrets the blood pact:
Newt: “It’s a blood pact, isn’t it? You swore not to fight each other.”
Bitterly ashamed, Dumbledore nods.
7: Chick turned Phoenix: At the end of the script, right after Grindelwald says that “a phoenix will come to any [Dumbledore] member who is in dire need,” Rowling writes that the chick Credence is holding is “given room at last” and turns into “a phoenix reborn.”
This is interesting because the bird that Credence is holding earlier in the movie is also described as a “chick.” This tells me that Grindelwald did not plant this bird to fool Credence into believing he’s a Dumbledore. No, the chick that Credence has been in possession of turned into a phoenix because he is truly a member of the Dumbledore family. Grindelwald is not lying to him.
8: What was the full prophecy in The Crimes of Grindelwald? The script book does not decisively answer this, but graphic designers Mina Lima released a print of the prophecy by Tycho Dodonus, and this appears to be the entire thing:
“Son Cruelly Banished
Despair of the Daughter
Return, Great Avenger
With Wings from the Water”