Mega-Movie Deal Will Bring a New Film Franchise to Theaters, Set in the 'Harry Potter' Universe, From 'Potter' Author J.K. Rowling NY Daily News
"Harry Potter" author J.K. Rowling is teaming with Warner Bros. to launch a new film franchise set in the world of "Potter," the New York Daily News reports.
The first film in the series, "Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them," will be penned by Rowling, the story reports. The movie will be set in New York City, taking place 70 years before the story of Harry Potter.
"The studio announced a massive new partnership with the the British author to produce a new film franchise set on the world created in the Potter books -- with the story kicking off in the most magical of places, New York City," the story reports. The series will not include Daniel Radcliffe's Harry Potter.
"The first movie in the budding franchise -- inspired by a Hogwarts textbook title, 'Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,' written by the fictional Newt Scamander, from the original series -- will be scripted by Rowling, who is making her screenwriting debut," the report notes.
In a statement, Rowling said: "Although it will be set in the worldwide community of witches and wizards where I was so happy for seventeen years, 'Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them' is neither a prequel nor a sequel to the Harry Potter series, but an extension of the wizarding world."
The author added: "The laws and customs of the hidden magical society will be familiar to anyone who has read the Harry Potter books or seen the films."
The eight "Harry Potter" movies grossed $7.7 billion in worldwide box office receipts, ranking as the most lucrative film franchise in history, according to the report. The piece adds that Rowling's seven "Harry Potter" books sold 450 million copies, being translated into 74 languages.
"Rowling said she was intrigued by the idea of focusing on the adventures of Scamander, whose grandson, Rolf, ends up marrying fan favorite Luna Lovegood in the Harry Potter series," the story reports.
Adds Rowling: “Having lived for so long in my fictional universe, I feel very protective of it and I already knew a lot about Newt."
Also in the works as part of the new pact: new video games and an increased presence for figures from the "Potter" universe at theme parks.