Today in localized poster art adapted for Hollywood films, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald gets a totally rad makeover for the Chinese market. The sequel to this Harry Potter spin-off — which focuses on “magizoologist” Newt Scamander and brings us back in time to a Hogwarts where Jude Law is Dumbledore (lol) — is out on November 16 in theaters across the US as well as China.
Evidently realizing the importance of dressing up the film’s promo in local attire, Fantastic Beasts tapped the talents of illustrator Zhang Chun, who also did a super neat set of illustrations for the first Fantastic Beasts in 2016. Here are some key cast members from the new one gathered for a press conference in Beijing last week, with Zhang’s illustrations arranged in a classic seven-panel display:
If these beastos look like they’ve been re-imagined with ancient Chinese aesthetics in mind, that’s by design: series creator J.K. Rowling herself has said that one of the new beasts, Zouwu, is modeled off a creature from the 4th-century BC epic Classic of Mountains and Seas. We’ve seen several creative attempts to plug in to Chinese culture lately (e.g. Venom as Instagram Meituan boyfriend), but this one might take the cake.
Here’s Rowling explaining the canonical Zouwu (a “five-colored,” “gigantic, elephant-sized cat”) and how it came to meet Newt Scamander:
Bonus round: if you thought the Harry Potter world was the only beloved British screen franchise to touch down in China this week, you’d be sorely mistaken. As the ever-observant Xueting Christine Ni has noticed, Dr. Who’s TARDIS has also made recent stops on the Great Wall and Wuhan’s Yellow Crane Tower:
— Doctor Who Official (@bbcdoctorwho) November 2, 2018
— Doctor Who Official (@bbcdoctorwho) November 1, 2018
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