Shockingly, the eight films in the Harry Potter franchise never won a single Academy Award. The costumes of the witches and wizards, the sets of Hogwarts and the Ministry of Magic, the visual effects of the spells and creatures, the tear-inducing, childhood-defining music of John Williams – in so many areas did the Potter films excel in craft, but still, they failed to take home a single Oscar from 12 nominations.
Now, as a new franchise is launched with “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,” it is the perfect opportunity for the academy to make up for past oversights. How many Oscar nominations do you think it will earn? Vote in our poll below.
“Fantastic Beasts” takes us back to 70 years before Harry’s adventures, and it also takes us across the pond to New York, where writer Newt Scamander (Oscar-winner Eddie Redmayne) encounters a secret community of witches and wizards. Scamander would end up writing the textbook that Harry and his peers study at Hogwarts. Indeed, J.K. Rowling published “Fantastic Beasts” under Scamander’s name in 2001.
While Rowling left the screenwriting for the Potter pictures to others, she crafted the script for “Fantastic Beasts,” which is the first of five films in this new series. We are predicting that it will earn three Oscar nominations, equaling the mark set by “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” (2001) and “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 2” (2011).
“Fantastic Beasts” is ranked fifth for Best Visual Effects, with odds of 10/1; that puts it comfortably ahead of “Civil War,” which has odds of 50/1. It’s doing well in Best Production Design, too, sitting in third place with 6/1 odds, and is fourth for Best Costume Design, with 10/1 odds.
It could, theoretically, earn more. Sound Mixing and Sound Editing are two categories where it could break into as it is in the top 10 for each. And Cinematography and Editing are two more potential bids, although they are much more of a long-shot.
Be sure to make your Oscar predictions. Weigh in now with your picks so that Hollywood insiders can see how their films are faring in our Oscar odds. You can keep changing your predictions right up until just before nominations are announced on January 24 at 5:00 am PT/8:00 am ET. Be sure to read our contest rules. And join in the fierce debate over the Oscars taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our forums.