The Roaring ’20s and Wizards in America Set up the Awesomeness of Fantastic Beasts

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Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is finally out in theaters this Friday, November 18, and we’re so excited that we can barely eat or sleep. It has been way too long since we last had a Harry Potter film gracing our screens. And this prequel looks just as awesome as the originals: from magical creatures to bumbling British wizards, it feels like the good old days of Harry vs. Voldemort.

The screenplay was written by Rowling herself, which means Fantastic Beasts is going to be amazing. Based (very, very loosely) on her textbook-style tome of the same name, the film tells the story of Newt Scamander, a wizard who traveled the world finding and documenting all of its magical beasts. But when he arrives in New York, several of this creatures escape, setting him on an adventure that will forever affect the magical (and non-magical) world.

The film sounds so crazy good that we’re all ready to get in line for the movie and just camp out until Friday. While we wait just a few more hours, here are the top five things we’re most excited about in Fantastic Beasts:

  1. Wizards in America

Harry Potter feels so quintessentially British that it’s almost impossible to imagine wizards casting spells in America. Will there be letters delivered by bald eagles? The Salem Witch Trials finally explained? Wizards obsessed with pizza? We can’t wait to see the differences between these two wizarding cultures. We’re already getting hints – including the fact that a muggle in America is called a “no-maj.”

  1. A Charming Eddie Redmayne

As much as we love the original Harry Potter movies, there’s not much eye candy in them (except for Cedric Diggory maybe, but thinking about him just makes us cry!). So we are more than ready to watch Eddie Redmayne wizard across the big screen for two hours. His character of Newt Scamander has been described as “shy and slightly daffy.” Sounds like our kind of guy. He’s also adorable and charming and has an accent that makes us melt. Bring on that eye candy.

  1. Harry Potter References

In one of the early teaser trailers, we got a bunch of Harry Potter references, including mentions of Dumbledore and Hogwarts (yay!). We can only imagine that the movie has even more hidden Easter eggs to satisfy all the die hard fans. Rowling also confirmed that we’ll see a young Dumbledore at some point, and that the entire series might end with an epic battle between Dumbledore and the dark wizard Grindelwald. Our little Harry Potter loving hearts can’t wait.

  1. Four More Movies to Come

Speaking of the series, Fantastic Beasts is just the start. Rowling is promising four more movies, each one diving a little bit deeper into the mythology that becomes the backbone for the events in Harry Potter. Which means that our future will most definitely be filled with wizards, magic and, well, fantastic beasts. While the next movie is two years away from being released, Rowling is already releasing info, including the fact that the film will take us to Paris at one point.

  1. The Roaring ‘20s + Magic = Yes, Please

The movie takes place in 1926, which means flappers, prohibition and gangster-era America. It’s a time period that’s already filled with romance, so imagine how awesome it will be with magic, too. Based on the trailer alone, the scenery, the costumes and the heavy accents all come together to transport the viewer to NYC in the 1920s. The only thing that could have made Harry Potter more awesome was if it had been set in the far past (giving us a much broader view of wizards throughout history) — and now our wish is finally coming true.

Rachel Carter grew up surrounded by trees and snow and mountains. She graduated from the University of Vermont and Columbia University, where she received her MFA in nonfiction writing. She is the author of the So Close to You series with Harperteen. These days you can find her working on her next novel in the woods of Vermont.

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