With just a few weeks left until Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them hits theaters, the cast is starting to come together for its sequel. Johnny Depp has signed on for an unspecified role in Fantastic Beasts 2, taking the co-lead alongside Eddie Redmayne's Newt Scamander. This news comes along with a huge Fantastic Beasts spoiler, so read on with caution.
It has been confirmed that fans will first meet Johnny Depp's mystery character in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. That's right, the actor has a big cameo in the first film opening later this month. And while the apperance is brief, it does set the stage for what's to come in the sequel. Some speculate that Depp is playing the key role of dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald, who was first introduced in the original Harry Potter books. It was established in the original stories that Gellert Grindelwald was once friends with Hogwarts headmaster Albus Dumbledore. This first movie has been confirmed to introduce Grindelwald at the height of his power as he calls for all European wizards to assert their domination over the muggles. Though, it hasn't been announced who is playing Grindelwald. You can probably bet money that it's Johnny Depp.
Deadline won't say what character Johnny Depp is playing, but some journalists have already seen the movie, and have starting fussing about the Depp cameo, which pushed Warner Bros.' hand in announcing the actor early. Warner Bros. recently announced a November 16, 2018 release date for the sequel.
The second Fantastic Beasts movie moves deeper into an increasingly dark time for the wizarding world, where Newt and our other heroes have to decide on their allegiances. Director David Yates (the final four Harry Potter films) will again take the helm, having recently completed work on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The new film will also reunite producers David Heyman, J.K. Rowling, Steve Kloves and Lionel Wigram. Neil Blair, Rick Senat and Danny Cohen will serve as executive producers for Warner Bros.
J.K. Rowling revealed this summer that her script for Fantastic Beasts 2 is complete, with David Yates returning to direct. David Yates also recently teased that the script takes the story in a whole new directions and introduces more characters that flesh out the Harry Potter universe. It hasn't been confirmed if supporting cast members Katherine Waterston, Ezra Miller, Alison Sudol, Dan Fogler, Jenn Murray, Colin Farrell, Carmen Ejogo, Jon Voight and Gemma Chan will be back for the sequel as well.
The franchise was recently expanded from a trilogy to 5 movies, with J.K. Rowling explaining that, when fans understand what story is "really" being told, it will make sense to tell it over five movies. Hopefully we'll learn more about the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them 2 cast after Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them hits theaters on November 18. Johnny Depp most recently starred in Alice Through the Looking Glass as The Mad Hatter, and he will next be seen in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, arriving in theaters on May 26, 2017.