Deadline Hollywood is reporting that the sequel to “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” has started shooting and is aiming for a November 2018 release. It looks like that the stakes have risen with the big bad of the roaring twenties era of the American wizarding world, Grindelwald, is on the loose and up to no good.

The first movie was a smash hit

Newt Scamander, the wizarding world’s version of Frank Buck, the famous big game hunter who brought exotic animals back alive, found himself in New York of the roaring twenties with several magical beasts having escaped and wreaking havoc. The rollicking magical adventure made a respectable $234 million in the United States and more than double that elsewhere in the world.

The movie was the first part of a five film franchise.

What’s going to happen in the next movie?

It looks like young Dumbledore, played by Jude Law, is tasked with hunting down and recapturing Grindelwald, his old childhood friend and now bitter enemy. The evil wizard had murdered Dumbledore’s sister as the result of a wand duel, and the future headmaster of Hogwarts wants payback.

However, Dumbledore needs the help of his old student, Newt Scamander, with Eddie Redmayne reprising the role. Tina, Queenie, and Jacob, the lovable comedy relief muggle, also show up. Lots of danger, action, and wizarding world politics are promised.

Who else is going to be in the film?

New characters include the featured attraction of a wizarding circus, Skender, who runs the circus, Yusuf Kama, a wizard, Grimmson, a bounty hunter, and Abernathy, the head of the Magical Congress of the United States of America.

Credence, Leta Lestrange, and Theseus Scamander, war hero and older brother of Newt, are previously announced characters.

The American wizarding world

J.K. Rowling, who wrote the screenplays for both the previous film and the upcoming one, has been developing the wizarding world of America, just as she did the one in Great Britain for Harry Potter. She depicts a unique system that combines the magic traditions of Europe with those of the Native Americans.

However, the purveyor of the most popular fantasy series since “The Lord of the Rings” has run into superheated criticism from the social justice warrior crowd for “cultural appropriation” of Native American traditions for the background of her new film series.

Rowling, who is on the political left, has thus far weathered the storm. However, it remains to be seen how much of that background is going to make it into the “Fantastic Beasts” movie franchise.

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