J.K. Rowling Joined by Harry Potter Screenwriter for Fantastic Beasts 3

Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling is joined by franchise scribe Steve Kloves on the still-untitled Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them 3, according to Deadline. Kloves penned every Harry Potter entry save for the fifth film, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, and Rowling thus far has been the sole screenwriter on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and 2018 sequel The Crimes of Grindelwald. Kloves is credited as producer on both films alongside Rowling, four-time Harry Potter executive producer Lionel Wigram, and Wizarding World franchise producer David Heyman.

In October, returning star Dan Fogler revealed Fantastic Beasts 3 is due to begin filming in February following a series of delays: the threequel, once planned to head in front of cameras over the summer, had its July shooting start pushed back to late fall before settling on its early 2020 start. Fogler last reported Rowling was “writing furiously.”

“Everyone was really happy with what she submitted, and we’re all just waiting for the new script,” Fogler said during a Boston convention appearance. “And that’s where we’re at.”

He earlier said the delay was because FB3 is “going to be gigantic” and “bigger than the first two combined.” Studio Warner Bros., Fogler added, “needed more time to prep and they didn’t want to rush anything so they pushed it back.”

After Warner Bros. announced the Harry Potter spinoff series in 2013 with first-time screenwriter Rowling, it was learned Fantastic Beasts was planned as a five-movie series already fully mapped out by Rowling.

“As with the Harry Potter books, it is all mapped out. In fact, when we announced the five films, I talked about that,” she previously told Entertainment Weekly. “It’s always possible that some details will change along the way, but the arc of the story is there. It’s been an amazing opportunity to tell parts of the backstory that never made it into the original books. I’m thinking particularly of one character that I think fans will be surprised to meet in this movie.”

In 2018, Rowling noted she has a heavy hand in Fantastic Beasts as franchise creator and producer-slash-screenwriter, but the new film series is a collaborative effort with the studio and returning director David Yates.

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Both “have always let me have my say, though not necessarily the final word,” Rowling said during a Q&A session. “That’s true of all the producers, of whom I’m only one: our input is taken seriously but it is very much a collaborative effort. The director is ultimately responsible for everything that’s seen on the screen. As the screenwriter, the majority of my input comes at an earlier stage.”

Fantastic Beasts 3 opens Nov. 12, 2021.