J.K. Rowling Signs Three-Movie Contract with WB
In yet another victory for capitalism (and hopefully for fans), the New York Times has reported that Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling has signed a deal with Warner Bros. which will see her Potter-world spin-off, “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” come to the big screen in three separate installments.
Rowling composed and published “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” during a brief hiatus from Hogwarts between the fourth and fifth installments of the Harry Potter franchise. The plot for the “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” movie revolves around a character not found in the seven-part series – Newt Scamander. Scamander is a magizoologist, or one who studies magical beasts. The story takes place in New York, some 70 years before the events found within the pages of the Harry Potter series.
The original text Rowling published in 2001 was simply an A-Z listing of many of the magical creatures which could be found in the wizarding world and was a required textbook for students at Hogwarts.
Rowling credits her return to screenwriting to new Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara: “When I say he made ‘Fantastic Beasts’ happen, it isn’t P.R.-speak but the literal truth. We had one dinner, a follow-up telephone call, and then I got out the rough draft that I’d thought was going to be an interesting bit of memorabilia for my kids and started rewriting!”
Originally pitched as an idea from Warner Bros. itself, Rowling couldn’t turn down the opportunity to showcase her writing skills on the big screen once again: “As I considered Warner’s proposal, an idea took shape that I couldn’t dislodge. That is how I ended up pitching my own idea for a film to Warner Brothers.”
“I always said that I would only revisit the wizarding world if I had an idea that I was really excited about and this is it,” stated Rowling when the film was first proposed last September.
As it currently stands, the Harry Potter franchise of movies has grossed $7.7 billion, more than any other movie franchise of all time. With the addition of three more movies based in the same world, Rowling is virtually assured of never going bankrupt, no matter how hard she tries.
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