Regrettable Release: Disappointment with the “Fantastic Beasts” Screenplay
Harry Potter fans have a lot to look forward to in 2016: the publication of Cursed Child, the release of the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them film, and the illustrated edition of Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. Well, it was announced today that the screenplay of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is also going to be published in book form.
There have been mixed feelings about the release of the screenplay. Some are excited, others not so much. Personally, I am not thrilled about the publication.
We were thrilled about the publication of the Cursed Child script because a majority of the Potter fandom is going to be unable to attend the live show. The film of Fantastic Beasts is going to be more widespread than Cursed Child. Lizzie Sudlow also added, “It removes any excitement for special features on DVDs (i.e., deleted scenes) if they are already printed in the screenplay.” It also increases the risk of spoilers for those who haven’t seen the movie.
I try to avoid social media for as long as possible after a new release of something that I wanted to see to avoid the impending spoilers. The publication of the book the day after the film release only doubles the chance of spoilers.
Beth Warsaw adds, “Film is a universal medium. What’s the point of stripping that all away? There are all sorts of visual language elements that would be lost.” The facial expressions, hand gestures, and body language add to the experience.
Then comes the subject of canon. No matter what your definition of canon is, it is most certainly going to shake it up. It already has!! Look at the debate about Newt’s education. Did he get expelled? Did he not? The publication of the screenplay runs the risk of contradicting the actions depicted in the film and previously published works.
Lastly, it feels like Warner Bros. is trying to wring every penny possible out of the Harry Potter fandom. Melissa Graham thought, “They could easily do this with something new and exciting, not something that is completely useless.” Rachael Dechert agrees and adds, “They thought of a way that they can make more money without actually putting any effort into it. Why not just turn it into an actual book? They’re just being lazy and found an easy way to make a lot of money.”
It is disappointing to think that they are pushing anything Fantastic Beasts related, or Harry Potter related even, for monetary gain. Even though I am disappointed, I cannot fight my love of Potter and will be buying the book. Only time will tell what will come from the publication and release. Until then, we wait.