According to The Hollywood Reporter, Imelda Staunton has been cast as the new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher in Warner Bros. Pictures' Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. Principal photography begins Monday with David Yates at the helm and a screenplay by Michael Goldenberg. Potter series vets David Heyman and David Barron are producing.
The Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher is a key character in the Harry Potter series, and a new one is introduced in each book. Staunton's character is named Dolores Umbridge. Also joining the cast are George Harris (The Interpreter) as Kingsley Shacklebolt, Helen McCrory (Casanova) as Bellatrix Lestrange, Natalia Tena (Mrs Henderson Presents) as Nymphadora Tonks and Kathryn Hunter (All or Nothing) as Mrs. Figg. Newcomer Evanna Lynch beat more than 15,000 hopefuls at an open casting call to win the role of Luna Lovegood, a Ravenclaw student who becomes an important ally to Harry Potter.