The cast features two Tony Award winners. Eddie Redmayne, a Tony winner for Red and a 2015 Oscar winner for "The Theory of Everything," will play the lead, Newton Artemis Fido "Newt" Scamander, a graduate of the Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, who specializes in magical and supernatural animals. Dan Fogler (The 25th Annual Putnam Country Spelling Bee) plays Jacob, a "muggle" (non-magical person).
Unlike the rest of the "Harry Potter" stories, "Fantastic Beasts" is set at least partly in the U.S., specifically New York.
The cast also includes Katherine Waterston as Scamander’s wife, Tina, Alison Sudol as Tina’s sister Queenie, Ezra Miller as Credence, plus Samantha Morton, Jenn Murray, Faith Wood-Blagrove and Colin Farrell.
Scheduled for release Nov. 18, 2016, in 3D and IMAX, the film will be an adaptation of the real/fictional book of the same title, ostensibly written by Scamander, but actually penned by the author of the Harry Potter series, J.K. Rowling. The book was originally published in 2001 to benefit the Comic Relief Charity. The action of the story takes place 70 years before the time of the "Harry Potter" books.
Rowling has written the screenplay herself--a first--and it is planned as the first film of a trilogy for Warner Bros. Pictures. It will be directed by David Yates, who also directed four of the "Harry Potter" movies.