Warner Bros. Discovery CEO David Zaslav has not directly addressed whether or not we’ll ever see “Fantastic Beasts 4” under his leadership. That said, it’s not because he’s unwilling to work with J.K. Rowling or anything like that. To that end, the Max streaming service is currently planning a “Harry Potter” TV show that will faithfully adapt the books and will run for ten years straight. And yes, Rowling will be involved.
More to the point, that seems to be the future of this franchise. The “Harry Potter” name has a lot of value in the way that “Fantastic Beasts” just never really did. Zaslav, speaking at Goldman Sachs Communacopia and Technology Conference in September (via The Wrap), made it crystal clear that WBD is going to focus heavily on established franchises in the immediate future, and that includes “Harry Potter.”
“One of the other real strengths of Warner Bros. is we talk about the great IP that Warner Bros. owns. But, for us, the challenge is that our content, our great IP — ‘Harry Potter,’ DC, ‘Lord of the Rings’ — that content has been underused. We think there’s a lot of shareholder value in attaching a 10-year DC — a real plan around DC, bringing ‘Harry Potter’ back to HBO for 10 consecutive years, doing multiple movies of ‘Lord of the Rings.'”
So, in the short term, it feels like proper “Harry Potter” is the focus. That said, “Fantastic Beasts” is a franchise connected to that world. If it’s ever deemed that there is a valuable way to return to that corner of the universe, best believe Zaslav and Co. won’t hesitate to pull the trigger.