After fans learned that we would be reentering the world of Harry Potter with Fantastic Beasts and its several sequels, we were undoubtedly thrilled — especially since many of us Potterheads were *very* critical about the controversial Cursed Child screenplay. But if waiting to see how Jude Law and Johnny Depp actually fare in the HP universe is getting a bit tedious, there’s good news: A new fan film about Voldemort’s backstory is set to come out this year, and it looks absolutely magical.
Over Memorial Day weekend, Potterheads were treated to a trailer for Voldemort: Origins of the Heir, a new fan film from indie production house Tryangle Films that sets out to contextualize the life of Tom Riddle. Created by Gianmaria Pezzato and Stefano Prestia, the film originally gained funding through a semi-popular crowdfunding campaign. However, once Warner Bros. got wind of the Kickstarter, both parties began talks around copyright violations. Luckily for Harry Potter fans though, the movie studio agreed to let the film continue with production if it became a nonprofit project and clearly advertised that it was not endorsed by, affiliated with, or associated with Warner Bros. or JK Rowling.
According to the official film website, the creators first came up with the idea of investigating the backstory of Tom Riddle while rereading the sixth Harry Potter book. They wanted to better understand the context in which Tom Riddle became Voldemort, as well as explore the few years after graduation when Riddle came back to Hogwarts. “There are some clues in the books which have not been transposed at all in the movies, but a lot goes unspoken,” the creators say. “This is the story we want to tell: the rise of the Dark Lord before Harry Potter and his first demise.”
Here’s what we know so far about the story. Heir to Gryffindor Grisha McLaggen (who never appeared in any of the Harry Potter books) suspects something is awry when Hepzibah Smith, descendent of Helga Hufflepuff and noted collector of magical objects including Salazar Slytherin’s locket and Helga Hufflepuff’s cup, was found brutally murdered. Although the wizarding media claims that the murderer was Smith’s house elf, McLaggen senses dark magic was at play, specifically Tom Riddle, and vows to stop him before he can do any more harm.
So far, fans have taken to Twitter to voice how impressed they are with the trailer’s stunning graphics and CGI that makes this fan video seem far more professional than amateur. In fact, most of the reaction to the one-minute trailer has been outrageously positive, even without JK Rowling’s input and expertise driving the production. (BTW, we’re still waiting for Rowling to tell us how she really feels about the movie, despite many fans asking her about it on her social media.)
Since producers are still casting for Fantastic Beasts 2 and the official film probably won’t be released until late 2018, we’re definitely willing to give this new fan film a chance — especially since it’s set to come out for free on YouTube by the end of this year.
Are you excited for Voldemort: Origins of the Heir? Tweet us your thoughts @BritandCo!
(Featured photo via Tryangle Films)