Movies

Eddie Redmayne finds new friends and foes in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald

“I still can’t quite believe it”

By Jenny Cooney Carrillo

British actor Eddie Redmayne has already achieved more than most in his relatively short showbiz career.

In 2014, he put in an Oscar-winning performance as Stephen Hawking in biopic The Theory Of Everything. The following year, Eddie blew us away with his tempered transformation for The Danish Girl.

It was pretty clear he was an actor with the magic touch.

But despite a long list of highlights (and some very high-profile co-stars), it seems Eddie finds the most joy in playing with creatures that aren't even real.

The star returns to the role of mild-mannered wizard Newt Scamander in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes Of Grindelwald. It's the latest instalment of the Wizarding World franchise. And he couldn't wait to come face-to-face with his creatures once more.

"The thing I enjoyed the most about the last film was the interaction with the creatures," Eddie, 36, tells TV WEEK.

"It was a whole new world for me; I was getting to work with puppeteers, improvising and playing."

Eddie returns to *Fantastic Beasts* as Newt Scamander.
Eddie returns to Fantastic Beasts as Newt Scamander.

The second film in the Fantastic Beasts series, this time around we'll see Newt teaming up with even more spectacular beasts as he does battle with the evil Gellert Grindelwald, played superbly by Johnny Depp.

"You'll see a host of new creatures, as well as old favourites," Eddie teases.

The addition of Johnny adds further weight to an already impressive cast, which includes Jude Law as a young Albus Dumbledore.

"I've known Jude for years socially," Eddie says. "He's an old pal and I adore him as an actor on stage and on screen.

"It's been really wonderful, because there's this kind of mentor-student relationship between Dumbledore and Newt, and I think Newt was quite a tricky student in that he doesn't care what other people think of him."

Co-stars Eddie (left) and Jude are good mates in real life.
Co-stars Eddie (left) and Jude are good mates in real life.

With a third Fantastic Beasts film confirmed and a fourth and fifth in the works, Eddie looks set to become part of the furniture in Potter-land.

Luckily, he couldn't be happier to follow in Harry Potter's (Daniel Radcliffe) magical footsteps.

"Every morning on the way to work, we drive into the studio and see the photos of Daniel and Emma Watson and Ralph Fiennes [Harry Potter stars] and it gets you excited," Eddie says.

"That's the thrill of what [Harry Potter author] JK Rowling has done. Even now, when I'm standing on set with my wand, I still can't quite believe it."

Half-blood witch Tina (Katherine Waterston) and Newt.
Half-blood witch Tina (Katherine Waterston) and Newt.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald in cinemas November 15.

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