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Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them Sequel To Leave Out Dumbledore's Sexuality

Updated on March 3, 2018
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A self described Potterhead, Jennifer Branton still rereads her Harry Potter books once a year, and spends too much on collectibles.

The Life And Lies Of Albus Dumbledore

The upcoming films in the Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them, are met with equal bits of anticipation and now skepticism from Harry Potter fans, as the newest installment brings a young Albus Dumbledore to the screen finally in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald.

Early media for the movie when asked if will have Albus Dumbledore gay in the films, seem to be dancing around the issue making it sound as if that was a definite no, from an interview with Entertainment Weekly.

Now where people unfamiliar with the Harry Potter franchise might not have known that the headmaster was a gay man or wonder why it is even of any concern to the fan base, but the it is the relationship between Gellert Grindelwald and Albus Dumbledore as teenagers that sets up the whole cornerstone of Fantastic Beasts franchise.

As explained more in detail in the Harry Potter and Deathly Hallows novel more than the two movies explaining the second great Wizarding War, after the death of Dumbledore at the hands of Severus Snape, a book was released explaining all the dark details of the early life of the Dumbledore family. Albus' father was exiled to the Wizard Prison for attacking several Muggles, the strange life and death of his mother, Kendra was neighborhood gossip. The strange and sickly sister Arianna was who kept inside the home and never allowed to go to school, and an estranged relationship with his brother. After the death of Dumbledore, even Harry began to question the man he trusted more than anything in the world and wonder if he had ever really known him at all.

The deepest of secrets was the relationship that had almost made Albus Dumbledore one of the most powerful wizards on the side of Pure Bloods and against the rights of Muggle borns.

The crimes we hear Grindelwald confess to later that will come about in the Fantastic Beasts series are all things he dreamed up as a teenager through letters and late night bedroom discussions over school holidays with Dumbledore. Not admitting the relationship between the two boys drops the whole premise of how Gellert became who he was at that time and why Dumbledore was so hell bent on stopping him.


The crimes that were later committed by Grindelwald were dreamed up by he and Dumbledore through letters exchanged at school and later nights over school holidays where the two boys dreamed of over taking the world for The Greater Good and the for the rights of the Wizards; something later adopted again by the followers of Voldemort.

For The Greater Good

Using symbols like the Deathly Hallows in their letters, Albus Dumbledore and Gellert Grindelwald would exchange letters while they were in separate magic academies during the school year. Young Dumbledore was quickly smitten as it was suggested from The Deathly Hallows novel as it was explained by its author, a relative of Grindelwald but it was never stated for sure if Gellert felt the same for his young friend.

Author J.K. Rowling stated in a Tweet in 2015 after the sexuality of Dumbledore was discussed that he in fact was a gay man and when a fan responded that "She hadn't seen him that way when reading the books or watching the movies," Rowling smartly responded "Maybe because gay people look like...people?"

The relationship between Dumbledore and Grindelwald, whether it was mutual or not had the potential to be the a terrible power to reckon with if they had gone along with their plans to run away and fight for The Greater Good, and against the world of the Muggles. "Magic is Might," they would write in their letters to each other.

It could have been the pair that were the first terrible wizards to the ranks of what happened decades later to an the orphaned boy, Tom Riddle who grew up believing the same ideas after his witch mother died and he understood she had used her powers to trap his Muggle father in a marriage. Abandoned by his mother by death, and father's family by him leaving, Voldemort went on a rampage killing his Muggle and Magical relations both and went on to do terrible things- just the same as what Dumbledore and Grindelwald were starting to dream up as boys.

After the imprisonment of his father and death of his mother, Albus Dumbledore was ready to get on with his life and leave everything he knew in Godric's Hallow behind.

From a young age, saddled with his sickly sister and a younger brother after his mother's death and his father sent to Azkaban, Albus Dumbledore was ready to leave his family behind and never look back.

The First Duel

Fantastic Beasts in its franchise will bring us the famed duel of Gellert Grindelwald and Albus Dumbledore, reunited after the first duel that parted the two young men until their adult lives.

Whether the love that Albus felt for Gellert was requited, it was never exclusively stated but the pair planned to run away together to get their rebellion started for The Greater Good of the Wizarding World. Then, Albus lost his mother and was suddenly saddled with the upbringing of his sister, Arianna and brother Aberforth.

Arianna was always explained to be sickly and never left the house. She was said to be a Squib, a person of magical hertiage with no power but Fantastic Beasts leads us to the conclusion that she was an Obscurial instead and unable to control her powers after she was tormented by the same Muggles that her father went to prison for attacking. Arianna was tormented by her powers and accidentally killed her mother, Kendra after an outburst.

It was the same type of accident that took her own life later in The Deathly Hallows when she witnessed an argument that turned into a physical fight between the Dumbledore brothers and Grindelwald when it was discovered that Albus planned to leave the family to fend for themselves. The boys were all yelling and wands were being waved around around and Arianna began screaming and couldn't stop screaming and her power exploded out of her.

Dumbledore never forgot that moment and it turned around everything for him and changed his thoughts about The Greater Good. He went on to be a teacher and the greatest champion for Muggle Born students after his sister's early death.

When Dumbledore is poisoned in the cave he is relieving the fight and Harry hears him begging "Please don't hurt them! Hurt me instead, please!" Harry isn't sure what this was all about until he knows of the story of Arianna.

Was he begging his sister to calm down? Was his trying to get Grindelwald away from his siblings? The story is unknown but the bad blood between the two boys on that day was something that Dumbledore never forgot when he faced his former love again later in life and watched him embark on a plan they had dreamed up as angst ridden teenagers.


Later Explained Or Ignored

J.K. Rowling Tweeted in frustration to fans that were outraged about the relationship between Grindelwald and Dumbledore being kept under wraps.

“Being sent abuse about an interview that didn't involve me, about a screenplay I wrote but which none of the angry people have read, which is part of a five-movie series that's only one installment in, is obviously tons of fun,” @Jk_Rowling.

The author does have a point, this early in the franchise who is to say if there will be any reference to the relationship as it not only plays such an important part in the backstory of the whole spin off franchise but promotes the inclusiveness and diversity that was sometimes hard to find in the earlier Harry Potter films.

Sure there were characters of color, but in a sea of how many students in Hogwarts, that only broke down to a few characters of color per House Year.

Since the author had says hung the story of the relationship of these two characters based on a relationship in their teen years, the audience should be allowed to make their own choices on wanting to see that. I'm sure the studio worries how that would test with audiences but in 2018, we have plenty of movies that already include same sex couples. The darker nature of the later Harry Potter films, and especially the kickoff entry of Fantastic Beasts show that these aren't really for young children anyway.

And again its 2018, it's not like this film series will introduce the idea of someone being gay to young children. Chances are kids can name a handful of openly gay celebrities, or family and friends as is. Who are we sheltering by not having one of the main reasons for the setup of this movie in the movie!

Director David Yates confirmed that the sexuality of Albus Dumbledore won't make it into the next movie in the series responding.

"”He had a very intense relationship with Grindelwald when they were young men. They fell in love with each other’s ideas, and ideology and each other.”

Do you feel the relationship of Albus Dumbledore and Gellert Grindelwald being absent from the film is a cop out?

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