EXCLUSIVE: Production Designer Stuart Craig Working on “Fantastic Beasts” from Home

What happens when a global pandemic affects working conditions? Aside from increased regulations and safety protocols, the most at-risk work remotely. One would think that isn’t possible in the film industry, but that does not seem to be the case at Leavesden Studios, in Watford, United Kingdom, where the third installment of the Fantastic Beasts films is currently in production. For one crew member, in particular, production designer Stuart Craig, working remotely seems to have become the norm. MuggleNet has exclusively learned from sources within the Fantastic Beasts 3 production that Stuart Craig has been overseeing set design via video call since November.

Craig, born April 1942, is quickly approaching 80. Remotely working on the third installment of the franchise was a swift decision made to ensure his health and safety for many years to come. We think it’s actually really cool that Warner Bros. and Leavesden have come together to protect his health, despite any increased inconvenience or costs.

Craig is a familiar name to fans of the Wizarding World, having been involved in the production of both the Potter and Fantastic Beasts series. He also brought magic to the Muggle world through his work on the creation of the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Orlando Resort.

His absence from Leavesden seems to tie in with the four-week lockdown in England, which took place during the month of November. Shortly after, Hertfordshire (the county in which Leavesden Studios is located) was placed in the highest tier of coronavirus restrictions, before a full lockdown was reintroduced in England on January 4, 2021, which also saw the closure of Warner Bros. Studio Tour London – The Making of Harry Potter.

 

 

Like movie productions around the world, Leavesden Studios has felt the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. Production for Fantastic Beasts 3 was halted in March after one day of filming before finally resuming in October. The studio was closed again briefly in September after Potter alumnus and star of The Batman Robert Pattinson tested positive for COVID-19. Since then, however, the studio has remained operational, including throughout the November and current lockdowns, with production on both Fantastic Beasts 3 and The Batman continuing.

We here at MuggleNet wish Craig and everyone working on Fantastic Beasts 3 and at Leavesden Studios the best of health as they continue to work to bring us movie magic during these challenging times.

 

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Lucy O'Shea

I was given a copy of Philosopher's Stone in 2001, and instantly, I was hooked. Since then, my passion for Potter has been equaled only by my passion for fair access to education (and watching motorsport). A spell I wish could exist in the Muggle world is the summoning charm because this Hufflepuff is not a "particularly good finder"!