Dan Fogler Reveals What It Was Like to Be in “Fantastic Beasts”!

With San Diego Comic-Con well underway, the cast and crew of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them have been busy providing fans with new information and other exciting glimpses into the film and its creation. In an interview with Vanity Fair, actor Dan Fogler (Jacob Kowalski) discussed what it was like to be in the film.

In fact, it was at last year’s Comic-Con that Fogler discovered that he had been cast as Jacob in Fantastic Beasts! As Vanity Fair writes,

At last year’s Comic-Con, the Tony-winning actor was peddling his own comic book, Brooklyn Gladiator, on the crowded convention floor when his agent called with the news that, after a marathon of transcontinental auditions, he had been cast in [the film]. Fogler remembers being so over-the-moon by the news that he started giving away gratis copies of his comic to strangers.

As a native New Yorker, the actor also described the “surreal” feeling of seeing the city’s streets recreated as part of the film set at Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden:

I know all of the streets where we are working. I had to fly all the way from New York to London to come to New York. It was incredibly surreal once the cameras started rolling; the horses were clopping along the perfectly crafted cobblestone streets, with the mist and smoke coming out of the grates and model Ts. I was in awe.

Explaining how it was possible to “get lost” in the 1920s setting, Fogler added,

And really the detail is immaculate. It’s not like you open a door to a store, and it’s just a storefront. You can sit down, and it’s like a restaurant inside. Someday that set is going to be part of the museum tour because of how intricate it is.

In his first meeting with J.K. Rowling, he says, she explained to him that Jacob was one of her favorite characters, comparing him to Ron Weasley:

He’s got a big heart, and they’re kind of cut from the same cloth. That was really cool to hear… She was just bubbling and percolating with this new story that is encompassing her whole being, and she was excited to share it.

Playing a character who is an audience surrogate, easing their transition into the magical world, Fogler went on to say,

Because [my character, Jacob, is] not familiar with magic, my reactions are very much how the audience would react to these things.

He added,

I equate the character to Nick Bottom in [AMidsummer Night’s Dream. [Fantastic Beasts] is embedded in the classic fairytale themes. Just like Bottom, [Jacob is] a regular fun-loving guy who is very human, who gets pulled into this crazy adventure and who gets to play with the fairies and wizards and witches and creatures. It’s very much like a dream.

Audiences will get to enter Newt Scamander’s magical world along with Jacob when Fantastic Beasts is released in theaters on November 18! For more on the upcoming film, be sure to read MuggleNet’s coverage of San Diego Comic-Con 2016, including our post on today’s panel here!

Are you attending SDCC this year? What do you think of Jacob so far? We’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

Mary W.

I am a Slytherin, a lifelong fan of Harry Potter, and a member of MuggleNet staff since 2014. In my Muggle life, I am passionate about human rights, and I love to travel around the world and meet new people.