Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne has been cast as the lead actor in Harry Potter spin-off film “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them”, written by J K Rowling.
Redmayne will play Newt Scamander, the wizarding world’s pre-eminent "magizoologist", who travels the world and documents magical creatures in his book, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, used by Harry and his friends at school in the original series.
Greg Silverman, president of Creative Development and Worldwide Production at Warner Bros, said Redmayne had emerged "as one of today’s most extraordinarily talented and acclaimed actors" and "we know he will deliver a remarkable performance."
Redmayne won an Academy Award for Best Actor for his role as theoretical physicist Stephen Hawking in last year's biopic “The Theory of Everything.”
Rowling, who will be making her screenwriting debut on the film, and which will be the first in a trilogy,
has said the film will not be a prequel or a sequel to the Harry Potter series, but will instead be "an extension of the wizarding world". The story will be set in New York, 70 years before the events in the original books.
Worldwide release is scheduled for November 2016.