Earlier today, we got our first official look at Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them with a series of new cast photos. Now, we're learning that American Wizards actually have a completely different word for Muggle. Harry Potter creator and Fantastic Beasts screenplay writer J.K. Rowling shared this latest update with EW, explaining that a number of new wizarding words and phrases will be introduced in this prequel.
While the original Harry Potter movies all took place in the UK, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is set in 1926 New York. And we'll get to go inside the Magical Congress of the United States of America (MACUSA), the American version of the U.K.'s Ministry of Magic, which secretly resides within the iconic Woolworth Building. The wizards who work here have a distinctly different way of talking. And it is sure to surprise and please hard core Harry Potter fans.
The screenplay will introduce these new words into the Potterverse lexicon. The most important of which may be the word No-Maj. That is stateside slang for the term Muggle (someone who is not a wizard or a witch). And it is pronounced 'no madge', meaning 'no magic'. No-maj is a term that will be used quite frequently by the American wizards in the movie. Though it is blunt sounding, the hyphenated word is used as shorthand in describing normal humans.
In Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, English magizoologist Newt Scamander, played by Eddie Redmayne, has come to New York to continue documenting all of the strange, wonderful and sometimes dangerous creatures that hide in the city. Once in town, he finds himself going on all kinds of adventures. His findings will later be culled into a text book used by the students of Hogwarts, including Harry, Hermione and Ron.
J.K. Rowling is known for her creative gift in concocting new words and slang terms used by the characters in her wizarding universe. This includes her colorful character names, casting spells, creatures and even places. But Muggle has always held a special place, as it was the first completely new magical word ever to be introduced in her written works, starting with the novel Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, which was brought to the big screen in 2001. And it is the word that J.K. Rowling is most known for. It even made its way into the Oxford English dictionary in 2003, defined as "A person who is not conversant with a particular activity or skill."
David Yates, who directed the last four Harry Potter movies, is directing Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them from a script by J.K. Rowling, who makes her screenwriting debut with Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. David Heyman, producer of all eight of the blockbuster Harry Potter features, will produce alongside J.K. Rowling, Steve Kloves and Lionel Wigram. Here's all the photos that were released earlier today. What do you think of the new American word for Muggle?