The Harry Potter fandom was rattled last week when we learned that a new word will be used in Fantastic Beasts when referring to non-magic folk.
“No-Maj” is the term that will be used by Americans in next year’s Wizarding World spinoff which opens in theaters in just over a year. The new phrase, coined by screenwriter J.K. Rowling, was created because different cultures quite often use different words for the same things.
The new word has understandably caused heated debates — we’ve known and used the word “Muggle” since the beginning of time! — but no matter what side of the argument you fall on, Eddie Redmayne offered some good news this weekend when he made a quick trip to New York.
While promoting The Danish Girl over the weekend the actor was asked about “No-Maj” and why J.K. Rowling would dare change a classic word. He revealed that “Muggle” will still be used:
“They haven’t changed the word ‘muggle,’” he said. “This is the important thing, the word ‘muggle’ has not been changed, the word ‘muggle’ still exists. It’s just different nationalities. The word ‘muggle’ will definitely be in Fantastic Beasts, I can put it that way.”
Redmayne didn’t explain further, but we assume that British characters — like Newt — will be sticking with the term “Muggle” while the Americans lean towards “No-Maj.”
In related news, the print version of Entertainment Weekly’s Fantastic Beasts cover story has revealed that Albus Dumbledore will be referenced at least once in the first movie.
“A line of dialogue in Fantastic Beasts references a wizard you may have heard of – some guy named Dumbledore,” says EW. Will we receive a new line of wisdom from Albus? Or will one of the characters reference knowing him?
As for other classic characters, EW writes: “Down the road, [executive producer David] Heyman hints, we shouldn’t be surprised to see a familiar face or two.”