'My inner 9-year-old was having a disco'
Credit: Jaap Buitendijk

The wand, we’re told, chooses the wizard.

But when starring in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, actors got to help design their characters’ wands themselves.

Oscar-winning actor Eddie Redmayne, who plays magizoologist Newt Scamander, put a lot of thought into his.

“I sort of assumed that I would have a wand sort of plopped in my hand,” Redmayne tells EW. “But the reality is that these amazing props designers come, and then you have really a quite intricate discussion with [director] David Yates about what qualities Newt has. He’s not a showy guy, Newt, so I wanted it be to quite simple. So we decided to have the wand be made out of ashwood, and it has quite a few scratches and sort of burn marks — so that you could get the sense that he’s been traveling the world with it, and it’s got quite a history to it.”

Continues Redmayne: “But for the handle, they were sort of talking about whether it should be horn or leather, and I didn’t like the idea of like animal products being used, given that he’s a zoologist. So in the end, they came up with this idea of sand shell… and it has a slightly mother-of-pearly feel. So we had all these discussions and went back and forth with designs, and when the thing arrived I was pretty excited. My inner 9-year-old was having a disco, and then I was actually presented with it!”

The Harry Potter prequel film opens Nov. 18 and tells the story of how Scamander’s enchanted briefcase full of troublesome magical creatures wreak havoc during a visit to New York in 1926.

Newt teams up with Porpentina “Tina” Goldstein (Katherine Waterston), an ambitious worker at the Magical Congress of the United States of America (MACUSA), her sister and roommate Queenie (Alison Sudol), and Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler), who becomes the franchise’s first main Muggle (or “No-Maj”) character

EW has Fantastic Beasts scoop every day for 10 9 days leading up to the reveal of our annual Fall Movie Preview issue. Follow along on Twitter and Instagram with the #FantasticBeastsAreComing hashtag.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (film)
  • Movie
  • 132 minutes