I’ve written quite a few of these director wishlists in my time (including ones for Star Wars: Episode VII and The Expendables 3, among many others), and I have to admit—this is probably the hardest one yet. The simple fact of the matter is this—at this point in time, we know almost nothing about Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them. We know it will be written by J.K. Rowling, and be an adaptation of her Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them non-fiction companion book. We know it will be a Harry Potter spin-off of course, and we know that it will be about the book’s “author” Newt Scamander’s adventures in a 1920’s New York. But that’s it really. That said, I’m assuming it will involve Fantastic Beasts, where to find them, and once again, take place in the world of Harry Potter. Which is enough for me! Here are the six directors I want to see handle the next iteration of the Harry Potter film series.
Now I split this one into two parts: Slightly Realistic, and Pie-In-The-Sky. Those two categories should be pretty self explanatory, so I won’t waste my time explaining them. So let’s just jump right in, shall we?
Pie In The Sky #1: Guillermo Del Toro
In creating this list I really wanted to rid myself of the standard directors I always tend to select (J.J Abrams, Steven Spielberg, etc.) But in this case, I just couldn’t resist—Del Toro knows his creatures and, this being a story presumably about them, I would love nothing more than to see the world of Harry Potter through the talented lens of Del Toro. Plus he’s already tied in big with Warner Bros, which will certainly be a plus. And with luck, maybe he could join the project, work on it for a few years, get frustrated as it withers away in development hell, leave the film altogether, and have Peter Jackson sub in for him. No matter what, we win really.
Slightly Realistic #1: David Yates
When looking for the director of a new Harry Potter movie, why look farther than the man who directed half of them? Though I wasn’t too pleased with the way Order of the Phoenix came out, the film has definitely gotten better with age and, honestly, that was the hardest book of the septrilogy to adapt, so it was probably the best we were going to get anyways. And I think Yates absolutely nailed it with the next three films, gradually moving the series into the darker territory that the story demanded with great success. And from the looks of things, Yates doesn’t really have any major projects in the pipeline. I wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest if he’s the first man to get a call from Warner, and I wouldn’t be surprised in the slightest to see him take it either.
Pie In The Sky #2: Alfonso Cuaron
Speaking of returning directors, hello Mr. Cuaron. Currently shaking up the world with his apparently amazing Gravity, I first knew the name Cuaron as the man who made the best Harry Potter movie of them all: Harry Potter And The Prisoner of Azkaban. I was amazed to see what he did with probably my least favorite book in the Potter series, and him climbing aboard Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them would literally be a godsend (dictionary bitches, I got immunity) And though he’s another Warner Bros. boy now withe release of Gravity, he seems like the kind of guy who would rather take steps forward then backwards, no matter how much money WB throws at him to do the opposite. Then again, Dan Harmon is the showrunner of Community again—anything’s possible.
Slighlty Realistic #2: Michelle MacLaren
Okay, maybe less “realistic” and more “it could happen in a badass world.” I seriously doubt MacLaren is on a big old list somewhere of directors for Fantastic Beasts but, hey, Marvel brought on Alan Taylor for Thor: The Dark World. Why couldn’t WB do the same for a fellow Game of Thrones alum? And with her duties now done on Breaking Bad, aside from the occasional Thrones episode, her schedule is wide open. It’s certainly not a sure thing by any means what with MacLaren only really doing TV at this point, but she’s already managed to make quite the name for herself as one of the best in the entire business. And besides, how great would it be for a female writer AND female director to work on a $200 million dollar blockbuster? Would be very refreshing, at the very least.
Pie In The Sky #3: Matthew Vaughn
Matthew Vaughn is easily one of the most talented directors out there right now, one that deserves for more than the works of Mark Millar to work with. Well he found a way to elevate Kick-Ass and will hopefully do the same with next year’s The Secret Service, I would love to see him tackle a non-comic book property again. And well Harry Potter isn’t exactly a 180 from what he’s been doing lately, it would be refreshing all the same for him to join the Potter bandwagon. Plus he’s British which, you know, helps (even if this film will apparently take place in New York). And let’s not forget, he made a fantasy film before—Star something or another. I think it had the chick from Homeland in it. Anyways, I wouldn’t bet Vaughn taking the gig or WB even offering him it but, as a slightly out of left field choice, I can definitely see it working.
Slightly Realistic #3: Joe Cornish
Well we’re on the British Tip (coincidentally the soon to be name of the hottest new pub in London), let’s talk Joe Cornish. The guy absolutely wowed me with his debut feature Attack The Block a few years ago, and since then I’ve been eagerly anticipating his next move. Well he’s mostly spent time writing stuff with his friend Edgar Wright, it’s clear from Attack The Block that the guy has talent. And though Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them probably won’t be a hard R-rated horror comedy about South London delinquents (sadly), it did show that the man is quite capable with creature effects even on a limited budget. And if my hypothesis is correct about Fantastic Beasts featuring some, well, Fantastic Beasts, why not bring in the guy who gave us big alien gorilla wolf motherfuckers? Hey, it makes more sense then the guy who did Mona Lisa Smile, right? And just look at his name. Joe Cornish! He practically sounds like a Harry Potter character himself.
And that there’s my list. What did you think? Are my choices as inane as they sounded in my head? Who would you bring on as the director for the spin-off film. Be sure to let us know in the comments!