Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them has been out a little while now, which means it’s time to test your knowledge. The Harry Potter quasi-prequel is chockablock with Easter eggs and references to the original books and films. Every time one rolled out, it sent a little thrill through every Potterhead’s spine.
There’s no doubt that this is one and the same universe. How many of these Harry Potter references in Fantastic Beasts did you pick up?
References to Newt and Fantastic Beasts in the Harry Potter series
Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them first made an appearance in 1997, in Harry Potter And The Philosopher’s Stone. It’s a fictional textbook that Harry has to buy before he starts his school year. Fantastic Beasts (2016) tells the story of the man who wrote it, Newt Scamander.
Though he doesn’t appear in the original anthology, his footsteps can be seen on the Marauder’s map in Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban movie (2004).
J.K Rowling released a ‘muggle’ version of the Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them textbook in 2001 to raise money for Comic Relief.
Grindelwald is a key character in Fantastic Beasts. He is mentioned throughout the film as a dangerous force on the European continent. During the interrogation scene, Newt Scamander is accused of being one of his followers by Percival Graves.
He’s also a key figure in Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows, often dubbed the most dangerous dark wizard in history prior to the rise of Lord Voldemort. He attempted to lead a wizarding revolution overturning the secrecy of wizards, believing he should become the ‘benevolent overlord’ of muggles. He killed his opposition, but justified this as necessary for the ‘Greater Good’, a slogan coined by Albus Dumbledore. He pursued the Deathly Hallows, which became his symbol. When Percival Graves accosts Credence in Fantastic Beasts, he gives him a necklace with that very same symbol. Rather reminiscent of the pendant Xenophilius Lovegood wears in Deathly Hallows. Are you keeping up?
Likewise, Dumbledore gets a mention. In his interrogation with Percival Graves, Newt’s expulsion from Hogwarts is brought up, and Newt is asked why Albus Dumbledore (his transfiguration teacher at the time) worked so hard to defend the student.
The Lestrange family
You may have heard this familiar name mentioned in Fantastic Beasts. One of the Harry Potter franchise’s cruelest villains, Bellatrix Lestrange is one of the last Death Eaters to be killed at the Battle of Hogwarts. Leta Lestrange, one of her husband’s ancestors, is mentioned in Fantastic Beasts as an old friend of Newt’s. Bonding over their shared love of magical creatures, Leta performed an experiment which went wrong during her time at Hogwarts, endangering another student. Incapable to seeing his friend expelled, Newt took responsibility for the accident. He still has strong feelings for her and carries her picture with him in his expanding suitcase. Director David Yates has said that Leta’s story will be explored further in the coming films.
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Graves mentions Hogwarts (and Newt’s expulsion) in the interrogation scene. It’s brought up again later at the Goldstein sisters’ apartment, where Tina and Queenie claim that the American wizarding school, Ilvermoney, is the greatest in the world. Newt immediately jumps in to claim the same for Hogwarts. He carries a Hufflepuff scarf in his briefcase.
Alohamora! Expelliarmus! Obliviate!
In Harry Potter And The Deathy Hallows, Hermione enters Gringotts as Bellatrix Lestrange, breaking into the Death Eater’s vault. The trio find her vault guarded by Ukranian Ironbelly, which serves as their escape route once the Pollyjuice Potion wears off. In Fantastic Beasts, Newt tells Jacob Kowalski that he worked with Ukranian Ironbellies during the First World War.
Newt’s naughty Niffler is the cause of much of his anxiety throughout Fantastic Beasts. They have a serious attraction towards shiny objects. They also make an appearance in the Harry Potter series – in their fourth year, Hagrid pairs the students in his Care of Magical Creatures class with their own Niffler to help them dig for Leprechaun gold. During Dolores Umbridge’s tenure as Headmistress, Lee Jordan lifts a Niffler into her office, causing havoc.
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Goblins and House-Elves
The heroes of ‘Fantastic Beasts’ visit a speakeasy bar in search of information regarding Newt’s missing creatures. There is a house-elf working behind the bar (RIP Dobby), and several Goblins, including Gnarlack, the black market trader who tips them off on the whereabouts of Newt’s Demiguise.
Almost as soon as he enters New York, Newt encounters Mary Lou Barebone, head of the anti-wizarding New Salem Philanthropic Society. “Are you a seeker?” she asks. “I’m more of a chaser, really”, responds Mr Scamander. Quidditch lolz.
Like “Oh my God!” for wizards and witches. Newt Scamander says it, Horace Slughorn says it, Cedric Diggory’s dad says it. Old dudes say it. It’s a thing.
The Monster Book Of Monsters & Newt’s suitcase
Those claws opening Newt’s briefcase are a visual Easter egg to Harry’s Care Of Magical Creatures textbook in his third year. The one which chases him round the room with gnarling teeth.
The floating lollypop & The floating apple
No-maj residents of New York get a shock when the invisible Demiguise eats an apple floating seemingly in mid-air. But this isn’t the first time food’s been picked up by an invisible entity in the Harry Potter universe.
The Erumpent horn
Potter fans will remember that Xenophilius Lovegood’s home was destroyed by an erumpant horn (a highly explosive material) which he believed to be the the horn of a Crumple-Horned Snorkack. The erumpant is one of Newt’s missing beasts, running to the zoo in search of a breeding mate. Newt (sort-of) captures the beast by performing a mating dance.
Oh, and incidentally, Fantastic Beasts is set in 1926, the same year Voldemort was born. Hmm.