26 Fantastic Parallels to Harry Potter

Nov 26, 2016

Posted by: Catherine

Books, Fantastic Beasts, Fantastic Beasts Movie, J.K. Rowling, Movies, News

As David Heyman, Yates, and Jo Rowling said countless times during the premieres of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, audiences don’t have to have any knowledge of Harry Potter to enjoy the film. Fantastic Beasts is designed to draw in a new generation to the Wizarding World, and still make Harry Potter fans feel like they’ve come back home. As we mentioned in  our review of the film, we believe the movie does welcome Potter fans home. After scanning J.K. Rowling’s published screenplay of Fantastic Beasts word for word, line for line, we came up with 26 familiar parallels between Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts. (SPOILER ALERT)



1. Gellert Grindelwald

Gellert Grindelwald is the central antagonist of the five Fantastic Beasts films. Gellert Grindelwald was the powerful dark wizard, who terrorized the whole wizarding world, before the rise of Voldemort. As we learned in Deathly Hallows, he operated under the motto “The Greater Good” and believed that non-wizards should be persecuted and eliminated (like Voldemort). Grindelwald spent some time in Godric’s Hallow with his great-aunt, the renowned historian, Bathilda Bagshot, where he met Dumbledore. The pair planned, plotted and sought the Deathly Hallows together, until a three-way duel between Grindelwald, Aberforth and and Albus resulted in Ariana Dumbledore’s (who is our first reference to an Obscurus) death. Grindelwald then set out on his own. The Fantastic Beasts series will end with the legendary duel between Dumbledore and Grindelwald.


2. Albus Dumbledore

Albus Dumbledore, one of the greatest wizards and headmasters of Hogwarts to ever live, needs no introduction. He is mentioned in the first Fantastic Beasts film for standing up for Newt at his expulsion. As confirmed by Davids Yates and Heyman, a young Dumbledore will become a central figure in the series, starting with the next film. Through he was in love with Grindelwald, there has been no confirmation on whether or not Grindelwald returned Dumbledore’s feelings. Dumbledore will gain the Elder Wand from Grindelwald in the final duel.


3. Leta Lestrange

What a last name to recognize in a subtly massive name drop in the first Fantastic Beasts film. Leta Lestrange is an ancestor of Bellatrix (née Black) Lestrange’s husband, Rodolphus Lestrange. She and Newt had an incredibly close relationship as outcasts at Hogwarts. Somehow, Leta–a “taker,” not a “giver”–broke Newt’s heart. We don’t know much about Leta Lestrange, but J.K. Rowling confirmed that we’ll learn more about her in the next Fantastic Beasts film.



4. Squibs Before Credence is revealed as an Obscurus, Graves calls Credence a squib–a wizard-born non-magical person. Filch was one of the most prominent Squibs in the Potter series, who tried (unsuccessfully) to overcome being a squib by using a Kwikspell course. Harry Potter’s muggle neighbor, Mrs. Figg, was also a squib.            


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5. Deathly Hallows symbol, touching it like the Dark Mark The Deathly Hallows symbol is one of the biggest parallels to Harry Potter–considering it is the title of the last book. As the Tale of the Three Brothers fables, the Elder Wand, the Resurrection Stone, and the Invisibility Cloak supposedly make one the conquerer of Death. During the Battle of Hogwarts, Harry comes into possession of all three. Grindelwald, Dumbledore, and Voldemort also sought the Deathly Hallows, but all were mostly interested in the wand. About half way through the movie, Graves pulls a Deathly Hallows pendent from inside his coat, and offers it to Credence. Credence is to touch the pendent if he wants to summon graves. This is very reminiscent of the Dark Mark Voldemort’s follows wore on their left arms–it summoned Voldemort upon touch.      




6. Extracting Memories (like Pensieve) Throughout the Potter films (starting with Goblet of Fire), long silver strands of memory were pulled from the temple by the tip of a wand. We often saw this when a Pensieve was used in a scene. When Newt and Tina are sent to the execution chamber (because the United States has a death sentence/death penalty, even in the wizarding world), Tina’s memories are withdrawn in the same way, and tossed into a pool, where we see her memories being played–like in a Pensieve.          




7. Alohomora, Petrificus Totalus, Repairo, Obliviate, Revelio From the moment Newt opens a bank vault with “alohomora” and stuns the bank manager, Mr. Bingley, with Petrificus Totalus, we find ourselves back in a familiar place–almost a complete circle to Philosopher’s/Sorcerer’s Stone, when these spells were first used. Though Hermione repaired glasses and Newt repaired an entire destroyed apartment building, it was nice to see familiar spells like repairo, obliviate, and revelio used in a more adult/powerful manner.    

8. Tina and Graves duel The similarities between the two images below. All the Harry Potter magic. Enough said. 





9. House Elves

Dobby, Kreacher, Winky, and other house elves (need we mention SPEW) became quite a prominent part of the Harry Potter series. There are House Elves everywhere in Fantastic Beasts: house elves polishing wands in the MACUSA lobby, house elves as bar tenders–it’s comforting to see house elves.


10. Grindylows

They’re in Lupin’s office, the Black Lake (at Hogwarts), and in Newt’s case apparently!


11. Erumpent

An Erumpent is one of the beasts to escape Newt’s case. Like an overly gigantic rhinoceros in heat, the Erumpent causes quite the scene when Newt and Jacob try to recapture it. However, these big guys were first mentioned in Deathly Hallows, when Hermione advised  Xenophilius Lovegood to dispose of the dangerous, highly explosive horn hanging on his wall, which he believed belonged to a crumple-horned snorkack. When Xenophilius didn’t listen, the horn exploded and his house to blew up.


12. Niffler

Honestly, the cutest, funniest creature to reek comedic havoc in Fantastic Beasts (as you can see in the clip below). Nifflers got a shining silver screen debut in Fantastic Beasts, but had been mentioned in the Potter books before. First, in Goblet of Fire, Hagrid taught Care of Magical Creatures students about Nifflers using leprechaun gold. Then, Lee Jordan set Nifflers loose in Umbridge’s office in Order of the Pheonix.


13. Murtlap

Making it’s silver screen debut in Fantastic Beasts, the Murtlap is the first creature to escape from Newt’s case. It is aggressive, and, after a little brawl, it bites Jacob on the neck. But, in Order of the Phoenix, Hermione used murtlap essence to treat cuts on Harry’s hand, which he had received from detention with Umbridge


14. Bowtruckle

Again, the Bowtruckles weren’t seen in movies until Fantastic Beasts, but featured briefly in the Potter books.  In Order of the Phoenix, Hagrid’s substitute, Grubbly-Plank, taught fifth years about Bowtruckles in Care of Magical Creatures.





15. “Muggle Worthy,” “We call them Muggles”

As everyone is getting used to the word “No-Maj” and how it doesn’t roll of the tongue as easily as Muggle, it was comforting to hear that traditional British term for Non-magical person a couple of times throughout Fantastic Beasts.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them Muggle Worthy

16. “Merlin’s beard”

Ron says it. Newt says it. It’s funny every time.


17. “Come with me; think of what we could achieve together”

There are several lines given by Graves/Grindelwald that sound eerily similar to bribes of power that Voldemort spoke to Harry. This is one of them.




18. Newspapers

MinaLima, the graphic designers of the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts films since the start of Philosopher/Sorcerer’s Stone, have been pretty consistent with their excellent work throughout the Potter/Fantastic Beast films. Many MinaLima designs in Fantastic Beasts were very reminiscent of the Potter films–particularly the news papers, with their headlines and moving pictures.


19. Apparation

There is a lot more apparating in Fantastic Beasts than in the Potter films, but the adult wizards in Fantastic Beasts are better equipped to handle more complicated magic. Stylistically, the elastic-looking form of apparition between the two wizarding world films is identical. Brownie points for consistency.

20. Protection shield around Subway like Hogwarts

Towards the end of Fantastic Beasts, trained aurors are raising a protective bubble around the subway station where Credence/the Obscurus has disappeared. This magical protective barrier is pretty much identical to the one drawn up around Hogwarts in the final battle. Members of the Order of the Phoenix certainly knew what they were doing.


21. CoS/DH Obscurus Distruction

In Fantastic Beasts, when the aurors attempt to defeat Credence (don’t worry–as evident by the script, and a tiny flicker of hope in the film itself–Credence survives, and according the Davids Yates and Heyman, will become a more central character), their spells piece Credence like the Basilisk fang seemed to pierce Tom Riddle in Chamber of Secrets. Then Credence bursts into a million black flaky bits, almost exactly like Voldemort in Deathly Hallows.




Hogwarts References

22. Hogwarts mentioned throughout movie

The actual Hogwarts Castle is briefly pictured in a newspaper in the opening scenes of Fantastic Beasts, as it enhances security due to Grindelwald’s attacks in Europe. Hogwarts is also mentioned by Graves, and in a little fun school rivalry between Queenie and Tina and Newt. Ah, Hogwarts, our home, we miss you.

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23. Hufflepuff scarf

When Newt has his case checked in customs, we see a 1926 Hufflepuff scarf tucked into his “Muggle Worthy” case. As Newt departs America at the end of the film, he has the scarf tucked around his neck. It is, as J.K. Rowling says, “the dawn of the age of the Hufflepuffs.”

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24. Quidditch reference “I’m more of a chaser really”

Even though we don’t see any Quidditch played (there is a MinaLima design of a 1920’s American Quidditch advertisement in the film somewhere), Newt does make an excellent Quidditch reference out of Mary Lou’s questioning if he is a “seeker” of truth. “I’m more of a chaser really.” Good one, Newt.

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25. Role of YA and Children

Credence is a young adult character that plays a crucial role in Fantastic Beasts. Modesty also plays a key, though muted, role. In the Potter films, children and young adults are given the most important tasks, and are the most significant characters. It was comforting to see this theme pushed through in the Fantastic Beast movie.

26. Love as most powerful magic

As we learned from Dumbledore and Snape, Love is the most powerful kind of magic in the Harry Potter series. It even defeats Voldemort. We see the magic of true love at work once again in Fantastic Beasts. Queenie and Jacobs love–that ending kiss–helps break the obliviative properties of the Swooping Evil venom and restore Jacob’s memories of the wizarding world (which is convenient as he is a central character in the next three, if not four, films).


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.