“Fantastic Beasts” Production Designer Discusses the Salem Memorial

Yesterday, Pottermore shared an interview with Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them production designer Stuart Craig. Craig previously worked on the Harry Potter films and is responsible for bringing much of the magical world to life. He also worked on the creation of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Resort.

In the interview, Craig discussed the creation of MACUSA for Fantastic Beasts, which we have seen featured in the recently released trailer.

Above you, in this 750-foot-high building; there are no floors. There’s just a giant cathedral-like space with hundreds and hundreds of windows. The first things you’ll see, probably, are the phoenixes. They’re forty-foot [sic] high! Big gilded phoenix sculptures, covered in gold leaf. They’re rather splendid, actually. They’re the work of our principle sculptor, Bryn Court.

Craig also spoke further about the Salem memorial that was created for the space.

In the middle of this vast space, there’s a huge memorial to the witches of Salem. J.K. Rowling wrote it into the script. The witches in the memorial are bronze sculptures, slightly larger than life. They stand in amongst the crowd, if you can imagine, so people can walk through the memorial and right by the witches.

Pottermore further states that

every statue represents someone who lost their life during the Salem Witch Trials of 1692.

It certainly all sounds very magical, and we love the amount of detail and care that goes into the production of these films. We can’t wait to see it on the big screen!

What do you make of the statue, as seen on Pottermore? Do you like learning more about the set design in the lead-up to the film? Let us know in the comments!

  • No dobby W

    A memorial to witches over the Salem trials??? Got to be kidding… LOL

    • Iain Walker

      There’s a real Salem Village Witchcraft Victims’ Memorial in Danvers, MA (the original Salem Village). If the victims of religious hysteria can be commemorated in real life, it seems odd to question it in a fictional universe containing genuine witches and wizards, who are only naturally going to want to memorialise past persecutions of their own kind.

      • No dobby W

        I am aware of the real story. Witch side are you on? I’ll stay with, Jesus. No excuse for lost of life, but, let’s expose who were the REAL murderers and victims are. Your take on fiction is odd to many that don’t believe for one minute that Rowling was some poor writer on welfare without a lot of help. We get it and she knows it Wake-up my friend. PS/ Something new to come on the market soon and Rowling may want to pay attention. 😉

        • Iain Walker

          [Rolls eyes] My own fault for feeding the troll …

        • Stellanatus

          Eww bigotry