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Can 'Fantastic Beasts' Survive Without Enchanting New Audiences?

3 20 100
19.11.2018

As J.K. Rowling continues to expand the “Harry Potter” universe, the generation that grew up watching onscreen adventures of the Boy Who Lived have remained a faithful bunch.

That much was clear from the opening weekend of “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald,” the latest installment in the seemingly endless array of “Harry Potter” sequels, prequels, spinoffs and stage shows. The umpteenth return to the fantasy series launched with $62 million at the domestic box office, a sizable and potentially problematic drop from “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” Like the first “Fantastic Beasts” installment, the audience breakdown was much older than the movies centering around the bespectacled boy wizard.

The lower than expected start displays that beyond die-hard fans, the Wizarding World has struggled to entice a new wave of Potterheads. Unless the fantastical saga can prove its relevance to younger audiences, Warner Bros. might find that each new installment in the intended five-film franchise represents a case of diminishing returns. And is it any wonder? After all, “Harry Potter” first became a literary sensation back in 1997 back when Bill Clinton was president and Donald Trump was still mired in Chapter 11 and reality show stardom, let alone the White House, wasn’t even a glint in the real estate developer’s eye. An entire new generation has come of age since that point.

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