David Heyman talks “Paddington” and “Fantastic Beasts”

David Heyman, the producer behind the Harry Potter films, the new CGI film Paddington, and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, recently discussed the success of Paddington and his work on Fantastic Beasts with J.K. Rowling.

Paddington stars Imelda Staunton (Dolores Umbridge), Sir Michael Gambon (Albus Dumbledore, Films 3-8), Julie Walters (Molly Weasley), and Jim Broadbent (Horace Slughorn).

The film, however, is not just for children and drew inspiration from the books! According to Heyman,

They’re great! They’re really funny, and I was amazed that there was humor that I would enjoy, not just that young children would enjoy. When we were making the film that was a really conscious decision…

On the message the film shares with the audience, Heyman says,

I think the message is kindness to strangers, what a stranger can bring to you…

When asked if Paddington would become a franchise similar to Harry Potter, Heyman admits,

It’s so funny. I never viewed Harry Potter as a potential franchise, and I think that’s a very dangerous thing, to look at any film as a franchise. I think what we did on Potter and what we did on this was to try to make the best film possible. If we make a good film and if enough audiences come, then there’s the possibility of making another one. If we make another one, we’ve got to make that better than this one, and so on. Because you can’t approach it like a commodity, and I hope you feel when you see the film it doesn’t feel like a product.

Heyman wasn’t even sure Harry Potter would come to be a full series, stating,

I promise you all I was trying to do was make as good a film as [possible]. The good news [is], each director was competitive with the one before and themselves. Wanted to make a film better than the one before.

David Yates, who directed the final four Harry Potter films, will be back to direct Fantastic Beasts as well. Heyman adds,

He knows the universe very well. He can handle the humor and the drama of the piece, and I think he’ll be great.

Jo will be the writer of Fantastic Beasts, but as for more involvement with the film, Heyman states,

So it’s the early days, so I don’t know how that’s going to continue through the process, but her role is this: She’s a producer – but she was on the last Potters – […] a writer, and a creator.

You can read the full interview by Crave Online here.

Have you seen Paddington yet? Are you looking forward to Fantastic Beasts?