Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald is a 2018 fantasy film directed by David Yates and written by J. K. Rowling. A joint British and American production, it is the sequel to Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them(2016). It is the second instalment in the Fantastic Beasts film series, and the tenth overall in the Wizarding World franchise, which began with the Harry Potter film series. The film features an ensemble cast that includes Eddie Redmayne, Katherine Waterston, Dan Fogler, Alison Sudol, Ezra Miller, Zoë Kravitz, Callum Turner, Claudia Kim, William Nadylam, Kevin Guthrie, Jude Law, and Johnny Depp. The plot follows Newt Scamander and Albus Dumbledore as they attempt to take down the dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald, while facing new threats in a more divided wizarding world.
A second Fantastic Beasts film was announced in October 2014, and in July 2016 Rowling confirmed she had completed the script. Depp was cast in November 2016, causing some controversy due to domestic violence allegations recently made against him, and Law signed on in April 2017. Principal photography on the film began at Warner Bros. Studios in Leavesden in July 2017. Filming also took place in London, Switzerland, and Paris, and ended in December 2017.
In 1927, the Magical Congress of the United States of America (MACUSA) is transferring the powerful dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald from their maximum security prison to London to be tried for his crimes in Europe. Grindelwald escapes during the transfer, aided by his follower and MACUSA employee, Abernathy.
Three months later in London, Newt Scamander appeals to the Ministry of Magic to restore his revoked international travel rights following his misadventure in New York City. While at the Ministry, Newt runs into Leta Lestrange, an old Hogwarts classmate who is engaged to his brother, Theseus, an auror in the Department of Magical Law Enforcement. The Ministry offers to restore Newt’s travel rights if he assists Theseus in locating the obscurial Credence Barebone, who has resurfaced in Paris. Credence may be Leta’s long-lost brother, Corvus Lestrange, the last of a long line of pure-blood wizards. Grindelwald believes only Credence can kill his equal, Hogwarts Professor Albus Dumbledore. Newt, however, declines, refusing to choose sides, and the auror Grimmson is dispatched instead.
After leaving the Ministry, Newt is secretly summoned by Dumbledore, who is under constant Ministry surveillance for refusing to confront Grindelwald (with whom he shared a close personal relationship in their youth). Dumbledore persuades Newt to locate Credence.
Newt’s American friends, Queenie Goldstein and Jacob Kowalski, unexpectedly arrive at his house. Jacob’s recollections from the New York City incident are mostly intact, as the MACUSA’s citywide Obliviation order only erased Muggles’ bad memories and his were mostly good. Queenie and Jacob have followed her sister, Tina, to Europe where she is searching for Credence. Newt learns that Tina mistakenly believes he and Leta Lestrange are betrothed. Newt suspects that Queenie has enchanted Jacob into eloping to Europe with her to circumvent MACUSA’s marriage ban between wizards and muggles. After Newt lifts the charm, Jacob and Queenie quarrel about marrying, and an upset Queenie leaves to find Tina. Newt determines Tina is in Paris, and, ignoring the travel ban, he and Jacob follow the sisters.
Tina searches for Credence at a wizarding freak show at the Circus Arcanus in Paris. Credence and Nagini, a young female circus attraction who transforms into a snake, escape after causing a distraction. While searching for Credence’s birth mother, Credence and Nagini locate the servant who put Credence up for adoption. However, Grimmson, who is secretly working for Grindelwald, arrives and kills her. Meanwhile, Tina meets Yusuf Kama who is also hunting Credence. Newt and Jacob encounter Yusuf and follow him to Tina. Yusuf, Leta’s maternal half-brother, says he made an Unbreakable Vow to kill Credence, whom he believes is his step-brother and the last of the Lestrange family.