TF1 airs the second episode of “Fantastic Beasts” this Sunday, while a new episode has just hit theaters. Johnny Depp ousted JK Rowling’s sulphurous words … The franchise is going through a lot of turmoil. Will they hinder the future of this profitable saga?
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, a prequel to the Harry Potter saga released in the fall of 2018, is the second and final film starring Johnny Depp as the powerful dark wizard, Gellert Grindelwald. And it is in this component, broadcast this Sunday, April 17 on TF1, that it takes on its full extent, in a particularly obscure role: that of a magician who claims to be of a superior race. This figure is one of those, typical, that Johnny Depp has always appreciated, fond of tricks and other physical transformations. This time he wears bleached hair, with varied and troubling eyes. The kind of powerfully embodied characters, adored by potters, these unconditional fans of the saga … Worthy of a Voldemort or a Severus Snape as a (fake) villain.
Except … boom. Entangled in lawsuits with ex-wife Amber Heard, who accuses him of domestic violence, Johnny Depp was forced by Warner out of this role, while the firm had initially supported him. The announcement was made by the actor himself, on his Instagram account, in November 2020: “Warner Bros has asked me to step down from my role as Grindelwald Fantastic beasts, and I have complied with and accepted this request. “
Soon after, Dane Mads Mikkelsen was cast as his replacement. In an interview with Sunday now, paid tribute to his predecessor: “He’s a masterful actor and trying to emulate him would have been creative suicide.”he confided. In Fantastic Beasts: Dumbledore’s Secrets, currently in theaters, therefore embodies a Grindelwald ready to do anything to conquer power, but more sober, far from the charismatic tribune played up to then by Johnny Depp. Will the Muggle public accept this change of face so easily? He had done it well when Richard Harris died in 2002, replaced by Michael Gambon in the role of Dumbledore …
A carefully controlled box office
Although the franchise is one of the most profitable in the world (behind the Marvel Cinematic Universe or the Star Wars)the second part of fantastic animals box office concerns crystallized, with $ 655 million in takings, compared to $ 814 million in the former. The success of the third, in theaters, will therefore be examined very, very closely. The sequel also depends on the results: fourth and fifth films, already announced with David Yates in the works – owner of the shop since 2007 and Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix – will see the light only in this condition.
The condition has become even more essential since JK Rowling has seen her reputation tarnished by several transphobic comments, from which the two protagonists of the saga, Daniel Radcliffe and Emma Watson, have disassociated themselves. The author of the famous novels, sold in millions of copies around the world, is still today the author of the screenplays. His name embarrasses Warner more and more, which made him appear very small in the trailer for Dumbledore’s Secrets. But the Magic world, that is, the extended magical world remains his creation and does not seem to let go. It is finally the public who, even if fond of the adorable robber Snaso or the cute and clever little ax always hidden in Norbert Scamandro’s pocket, could get tired in front of her …
r Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald Sunday 17 April, on TF1 at 9.10pm