Frame-by-Frame Analysis of the New “Fantastic Beast” Trailer

Apr 11, 2016

Posted by: Catherine

Fantastic Beasts, Fantastic Beasts Movie, Movies, News, Redmayne

Yesterday, Eddie Redmayne gave us the biggest present at the MTV Movie Awards. Who was not jumping and squealing with excitement and joy after watching the first full-length theatrical trailer of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them? All of us at Leaky were gushing, and we could hardly contain ourselves.

After reviewing everything we know about the Fantastic Beast films so far a couple months ago with the release of a Fantastic Beast’s clip (see the Leaky analysis article here), we see the new trailer reveals so much more information! It’s a bucket full of whole new content–more than just 16 new facts, sorry Pottermore. (See Pottermore’s article on 16 new things we learned about the trailer here.)

The music was magical. Our skin tingled hearing the familiar Hedwig’s theme, and familiar Harry Potter scores with a new twist.

The trailer (undoubtedly, as will the movie) opens with the familiar Warner Bros logo, freshly polished since it’s rusty Harry Potter days. From this first frame, we can already tell we are in for one magical ride. (Click to enlarge all photos)

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We first see Eddie Redmayne as New Scamander, sitting alone on a bench in New York city. He hasn’t found his core group of friends yet, don’t worry Newt, we’ve all been there. Over this frame, Colin Farrell, as Graves, narrates his opinion of Newt.

Graves’s voice is rather scary, almost sinister, as if he’s interrogating Mr. Scamander (we do know that Newt is in some deep, serious trouble with MACUSA, and Graves is chief of Wizarding Police, aka Head Auror). “You’re an interesting man, Mr. Scamander,” Graves says. We agree.

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As Newt enters 1920’s America, aboard a ship like the thousands of immigrants coming in from Europe at the time, we get our first beautiful glimpse at the Wizarding World’s 1920’s New York skyline.

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Graves makes a jab at Newt and his troublesome suite case, saying “You’re an interesting man, Mr. Scamander. Just like your suit case. I think there’s much more to you than meets the eye.” And with that, ladies and gentlemen, we get our first look at a beast as it peaks out of Newt’s case…peaking out? That’s slightly problematic…though, those cute little beasty hands don’t look threatening at all!

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Then things get real serious, real quick. Newt was kicked out of Hogwarts for endangering a human life with a beast…sounds like he and Hagrid would get along very well.

While Graves’s tells us this grievous fact, we see that Newt probably did well in Herbology during his time at Hogwarts. Not unlike his fellow Hufflepuff, Professor Sprout. Newt is seen brewing up something magical.

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Newt is at a table overflowing with plants, and what looks like a large slab of meat. He isn’t being very secretive about what he’s doing, as Jacob is sitting off in the corner. This means, at this point, No-Maj Jacob has already been introduced to the world of magic.

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Ooohhh, sparkly! What’cha making there, Newt? A remedy?


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If endangering a human life with a beast didn’t sound bad enough in Graves’s deep voice, add in the dramatic orchestra music (we cannot wait for this sound track) and rushing down a dark 1920’s street, with cars headed straight at you. Look at that outdoor set! It’s fantastic.

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Newt, in this next frame, we see the way you’re looking at Tina. We agree–your future wife is very beautiful, and she cleans up well. Tina Goldstein looks like she’s ready for a good night out on the town…except wait. It’s the 1920’s and Prohibition is roaring as strong as the speak easies…that guy over her right shoulder looks like he’s had a rough night.


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We quickly change from Newt staring lovingly at his gorgeous future wife, to a good look at a 1920s bank. Something bad happens at this bank–and it’s not a market crash, Black Thursday is still a few years away. While Newt is in line, he suddenly feels the need to glance over his shoulder. Something magical and fishy is happening…

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Honestly, the glance over the shoulder is a look of pure terror.


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During this scene, and while we get a good look at the 1920’s American immigration system (which is still a hot topic in American politics today), Graves tells us that one of Newt’s professors fought for him to stay at Hogwarts. Albus Dumbledore.

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In the 1920’s Albus Dumbledore would be a strapping young wizard at the age of 40. However, he would already be well-known around the world for his brilliance. At this time, Dumbledore would be a Transfiguation professor. He would hold this teaching position for at least another 17 years. (It is 1926, the same year Tom Riddle was born, and Dumbledore would still be teaching Transfiguration during young Voldy’s school days).

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While Newt steps hesitantly towards the United States’ Customs (don’t worry, we understand your hesitation), Graves narrates, “What makes Albus Dumbledore so fond of you, Mr. Scamander?” We have to admit, being recognized by a genius like Dumbledore is pretty impressive. But look at that face! Eddie, Newt, what’s not to love?

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As Newt gets questioned by a customs officer, we learn some pretty valuable information. It is Newt’s first trip to America! …And then we hear his case click open. That’s not good.

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Newt calmly (a little too calmly) looks down and says oops, he must get that fixed. Oops? OOPS!? That’s a big oops. Newt, we can see how some little beasties escaped, and we can definitely see how you found yourself in a bucket load of trouble!

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As the USA customs officer continues to ask Eddie a few questions, Eddie sneakily changes his case to Muggle Mode. That’s awesome. Don’t deny it all of us have found ourselves in a situation where we could use a Muggle mode on our bags.

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Let’s see…Newt has a Hufflepuff scarf (awe!), a city map of New York, another map with places circled in red, a very nice camera, and some muggle/no-maj clothing.


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The USA customs officer asks Eddie if he has anything edible in his case, or any live stock (Note: though this process shares some similarities with current American customs, the process is pretty much nothing like this). Eddie looks in the custom officer’s face and lies.

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That, above, is the “you hesitated” face. Newt, you hesitated. We know what’s really in that case. Though, it’s not the sort of live stock the officer had in mind. But “Welcome to New York”! Let the chaos begin!

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As soon as Newt is allowed into New York, the trailer moves into an action frame. With dramatic orchestra music, we see a group of uniformly dressed men running through MACUSA and down the stairs. Dispatch the aurors! Trouble is here!

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Take a minute to take in the MACUSA atrium, as we get another look at it. There is a 1920’s lift next to the stairs (how considerate), and a large central clock. Along the far end of the room, we see employees working at their desks. A white marble statue, possibly of a former MACUSA President, stands above their desks. A rather large banner of the current MACUSA Madam President, Seraphina, hangs above them as well–looking down and watching over everyone in the MACUSA atrium…

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The Harry Potter films were incredibly detailed, and it looks like the Fantastic Beasts films will not disappoint in this area. Newspapers often give away many clues about what is going on in the wizarding world. This one second frame is no different (click to enlarge the pictures).

The New York G– is what the picture shows. It might be the wizarding version of the New York Gazette, which was New York’s first newspaper in real life. If you feel like a brief History of Muggles lesson, see more information on the New York Gazette here.

Update: MinaLima confirms that the wizarding version of the New York Gazette is called the “New York Ghost.” (sited somewhere on MuggleNet–thanks!)

The Second Salemers are at large, as one headline on the back page reads, “International Wizard Hunt Intensifies.” On the same page, we see there are some wizards that might be contributing to this distress. Alberto Macellarus is wanted for 3,500 Dragots (American Wizarding money), for counterfeiting wands and murder–he is “bearing a wand and extremely dangerous!” Newt and his troubles is a jar of butterflies compared to that guy.

On the same page, an article tracks the “Threat Levels of Magical Exposure” from 1913-1926, and “Federal Bureau of Covert Vigilance and No-Maj obliviation” records a record number of penalties issued.

The biggest headline is “Magical Disturbances Risk Wizarding Exposure,” with a supporting article stating that President Seraphina Picquery is to “address fearful American Wizarding Community.”

As we learned in the History of North America stories from J.K. Rowling, MACUSA has a much more strict statute of secrecy than the rest of the world. They try to completely isolate themselves from the No-Maj world.

On a lighter note, the newspaper also reports “Sports,” “Wizbiz,” “Celestial Updates” and a “Wizards Checkers” newspaper puzzle game like the New York Time’s crossword puzzle.

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We then see Newt and Tina, walking somberly up the steps of MACUSA that aurors were rushing down a few frames before. With all of the political no-maj unrest, and Newt’s ultimate rule breaking habits, we can see why a visit to MACUSA might be no laughing matter. They are probably not there for a cup of tea and biscuits.

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In the next few frames, we return to what looks like a secret night out. In this frame, Newt looks more weary of magic than Jacob–Jacob is so used to it by now. Wizards, of course, don’t have to abide by no-maj prohibition. As J.K. Rowling wrote in her North American history of magic lessons:

“Unlike the No-Maj community of the 1920s, MACUSA allowed witches and wizards to drink alcohol. Many critics of this policy pointed out that it made witches and wizards rather conspicuous in cities full of sober No-Majs. However, in one of her rare light-hearted moments, President Picquery was heard to say that being a wizard in America was already hard enough. ‘The Gigglewater’, as she famously told her Chief of Staff, ‘is non-negotiable.’”

It looks like a pretty dark and sketchy place to be…however, Queenie looks like she’s enjoying their little adventure.


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Let’s take a break and just admire this outdoor set for a couple frames:


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Ahhhh…okay moving on.

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As we know from Liverpool set reports last November, a rally of Second Salemers makes quite the ruckus outside a no-maj American political event. They apparently support a presidential candidate named “Shaw.”

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It’s not hard to see why…his political dinner looks a wee bit fascist (just a little). He doesn’t look like he’d be too friendly with the MACUSA or the United States wizarding community.

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It looks like someone with a super strong Diluminator interrupted Shaw’s event and started taking out the lights and chandeliers.  That can’t be good. That’s going to hurt the American wizarding community.

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Definitely not a Diluminator. Whatever blew out the lights is throwing people across rooms a few frames later. This really can’t be good.

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Hello, Graves. Try smiling sometime; you’re wearing this wonderful coat. The coat is totally worth all the trouble going down in your world right now.

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Remember back when a young girl named Faith was cast as a character named Modesty? If you don’t, here is a refresher. As the Harry Potter Wikia reminds us, “she was a haunted young girl with inner strength and stillness. She also possessed an ability to see deep into people and understand them. Modesty met Newton Scamander during his travels in New York, at which time she was between the age of eight and twelve.

That’s her.

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Meanwhile, Newt and Tina find themselves in a sticky situation in what looks like underground tunnels. They are hiding and trying to run from those scary looking dudes on the right.

Then Newt has this brilliant idea.

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He’s just going to throw this blue and green ball of beast at their pursuers. Honestly, where did you pull that from, Newt? Your pocket?

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It’s half-butterfly half-bat with a skull for a face. It’s a “Swooping Evil.” At least that is what the coding and title tag on the Pottermore official picture (picture number 14) calls it. It is not in the little Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them textbook written by J.K. Rowling. This must be a new invention…sadly, that means we don’t know what it does. It’s name suggests something sinister, and it’s face doesn’t look nice.

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Seriously, it doesn’t. It’s the type of face that haunts you in your dreams.

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That’s the face you’d make after seeing a Swooping Evil in your dreams.

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When an auror bursts into a speak easy by apparating, it must be a magical speak easy or that would be breaking a lot of laws. He’s definitely not there to confiscate that alcohol…so maybe he’s after Newt and the gang?

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Graves is definitely after them, and he’s giving it his all in this scene. The situation must be dire if he, head auror, is casting that much magic in a no-maj subway.

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A second fantastic beast! Hello, little guy! You are much cuter than that Swooping Evil thing. It looks like it was your tiny claws peaking out of the suitcase in the beginning frames. Ladies and gentlemen, meet a Niffler.

In the Fantastic Beasts textbook by J.K. Rowling, the Harry Potter author describes a Niffler as such:

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A little trouble maker, but an adorable one. Looks like he’s got a hold on Queenie’s purse.

Update: We were right about both creatures. Pottermore just confirmed that they are a Swooping Evil and an Niffler. They just “exclusively” released the names. Oops. Sorry, didn’t mean to steal your thunder there, Pottermore.

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Can we laugh at the 1920’s NYPD? They have no idea what they’re up against. I highly doubt those guns are a match for magic.

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Queenie definitely looks suspicious. And it looks like she’s coming out of the MACUSA elevator…hmmm.

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Mean while, Tina and Newt, back in the underground tunnels, are making a run for it.

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I don’t think that Swooping Evil creature did its job…

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…it’s hard to tell if they make it out of this situation.

Newt resorts to jumping off a building and apparating before he can fall. Don’t try this at home unless you are a very skilled wizard. Even then, we don’t recommend it.

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Graves starts narrating again. We learn that “no human can do what this thing is capable of.” Sounds like something really nasty escaped from Newt’s case, because President Seriphina and Graves do not look happy. They’re stylish, but not happy.

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The Fantastic Beast logo flies onto the screen, but the trailer doesn’t end there. The Harry Potter music, though! Hedwig’s theme just sinks right down to the soul!

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In fact, the funniest, most adorable Newt-Jacob bro moment is saved for last. We now understand what David Heyman meant when he said, “[Beasts] is very funny, it’s got a big heart, and there’s darkness too.” 

Newt’s face as he struggles to get to sleep. That moment, when you’re lying in bed and you have an idea that just pushes you out of bed and you startle your roommate, who is drinking some bed-time hot coco and reading “Cassandra and Her Cat Gustavus.”

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Of course, that brilliant idea that pushes Newt out of bed is stepping into his case. Don’t think Hermione ever went inside her beaded bag…is that a good idea?

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Of course, good idea or not, then Newt whistles to his no-maj roomie and motions him to follow. Jacob’s “who, me?” look is priceless. Maybe he’d rather stay in bed with that cup of hot coco and read about Cassandra and her cat Gustav…eh, who are we kidding?

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The entire Fantastic Beasts trailer [HD] can be seen below. We’ve watched it a million times, and we’re sure you have too–never enough! Let us know if we missed anything. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them hits theaters November 18.



The Leaky Cauldron is not associated with J.K. Rowling, Warner Bros., or any of the individuals or companies associated with producing and publishing Harry Potter books and films.