Jared Harris Weighs in on Those Dumbledore Rumors for ‘Fantastic Beasts 2’
If there is any silver lining to the quagmire of sadness and disappointment that was 2016, it might just be the overdue recognition of Jared Harris as one of the better talents of the last two decades. Like many incredibly talented actors who don’t fit neatly into the Hollywood mold of the leading man, Harris has spent his career bouncing around as supporting characters and weirdos before finally finding his niche as a middle-aged heavyweight. Call it the Michael Caine career path if you want, but either way, it ends with us finally giving an extremely talented actor his full measure.
And since Harris hit the ranks of middle-aged powerhouses just as Warner Bros. began the search for a younger version of Dumbedore in its Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them franchise, it was only a matter of time before fans began to put the two of them together. In some ways it’s almost too perfect: Harris’ father Richard Harris played Dumbledore in the first two films before his death, making Jared Harris the perfect candidate to play a younger version of a character his father originated onscreen. In an interview with the Standard Online (via Heroic Hollywood), Harris admitted that he’s heard the same rumors as the fans, but knows better than to assume anything is imminent.
They’re obviously thinking about it. I haven’t heard anything and I don’t expect to. It’s not up to me… Having seen [fan campaigns] before I find that [film bosses] don’t like to have their hands forced. These campaigns almost always go in a different direction.
Like most Hollywood decisions, the studio’s choice for the future Hogwarts headmaster will probably boil down to recognition over talent. As the actor played Moriarty in the 2011 blockbuster Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, Warner Bros. should already be familiar with his work, but that might not be enough to offset the major names the studio could bring in for the role. Since Warner Bros. recently added Johnny Depp to the franchise in a key role — choosing a recognizable actor over a more inspiring talent — put my money down on Warner Bros. angling for someone like Daniel Craig as Dumbledore. It may not be what the fans had in mind, but it looks absolutely wonderful against the bottom line.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is now playing in theaters everywhere for those of you who need a break from the family this holiday weekend.