Eddie Redmayne as Newt Scamander
Eddie Redmayne as the magizoologist Newt Scamander

Warner Bros. has officially scheduled Fantastic Beasts 3 for release in July 2022.

Following the massive success of the Harry Potter franchise, Warner Bros. sought to partner with author J.K. Rowling on new projects set within the Wizarding World. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is based on a fictional textbook of the same name used by Hogwarts students, premiering in 2016 and kicking off a new five-film franchise. Starring Eddie Redmayne as magizoologist Newt Scamander, the Fantastic Beasts series acts as a prequel to the Harry Potter films.

Production was slated to begin earlier this year, but the coronavirus pandemic pushed the start of filming until the fall. Further complicating matters is last week’s news that Johnny Depp, who played dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald, will exit the franchise. Scenes with Depp had not been shot yet, and his departure isn’t expected to significantly alter the film’s production timeline.

The third Fantastic Beasts filming commenced in September 2020 in the U.K. It’s directed by David Yates, who helmed a number of the original Harry Potter films. Fantastic Beasts 3 will now open one week after Captain Marvel 2, which is currently slated to open July 8 2022.

This raises the question of whether Grindelwald will be recast as a human actor, or if he will become CGI.