After Gravity made over $700 Million worldwide and won him two Oscars, Alfonso Cuaron is seemingly in the catbird seat as he just achieved both critical and commercial success. Which makes it a little surprising to hear that he’s supposedly deep in talks to direct the first Harry Potter spin-off movie Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
This news comes from Nikki Finke, and the thing that would make this strange is that Cuaron could have his pick of any project. He just wrote and directed a huge film, which should give him carte blanche to make what he wants with a budget of his choosing. So why make a franchise picture when he can do what he wants?
The positive is that Cuaron directed the third Potter movie, which would make him a returning vet, and could give a voice and shape to this spin-off franchise that seems like a terribly bad idea from the outset. If he’s working on the script and taking the helm, it no longer looks like just a cash-in (and it wouldn’t make sense for David Yates to return as he’s yet to establish himself outside of the universe). On top of which it would likely be a favor to Warner Brothers, who took a risk on Gravity. It’s the sort of back scratching leads to being able to fail big and still getting another shot. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is scheduled to hit theaters November 18, 2016.