The man playing Professor Dumbledore in the next big screen installment of J.K. Rowling’s wizarding world wants everyone to know there’s plenty of time for the character to be openly gay. Jude Law has finally broken the silence about his role in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. Plus, Law also hinted at what subject Dumbledore might be teaching at Hogwarts at this point in the Potter timeline.
On Tuesday, Entertainment Weekly published a new interview with Jude Law who revealed what fans can expect from Dumbledore in the second movie of the series and totally addressed the recent controversy regarding Dumbledore’s sexuality, namely, whether or not it would be addressed at all. In the original Harry Potter series, there was no mention of Dumbledore’s sexuality or any romantic interests. But, when J.K. Rowling revealed he was homosexual in 2007 (the same year the final book was published, but after it bookstores) the decision irked some fans who would have wished to see a homosexual mentor figure who was also the greatest wizard of all time be an openly gay man. Some felt it was “tacked on.”
But, the controversy returned this year, then, when David Yates, the director of many of the original Potter films and the director of the new series, mentioned that Dumbledore was not “explicitly gay” in Crimes of Grindelwald. When EW asked Law about it, he addressed the controversy head-on.
“With humans, your sexuality doesn’t necessarily define you; he’s multifaceted. I suppose the question is: How is Dumbledore’s sexuality depicted in this film? What you got to remember this is only the second Fantastic Beasts film in a series and what’s brilliant about Jo’s writing is how she reveals her characters, peels them to the heart over time.” In other words, according to Law, although we may not see Dumbledore’s sexuality depicted in the sequel of this series, there are many films to come, and some of those sequels might be more explicit.
“We learn a little about his past in the beginning of this film, and characters and their relationships will unfold naturally which I’m excited to reveal. But we’re not going to reveal everything all at once,” Law said.
He also addressed how he will handle taking on a character that has been portrayed by heavy-weights like Richard Harris and Michael Gambon.
“This is a man with almost 100 years ahead of him before he became that character, so we wanted to look at who he was in this moment and construct our own version. It makes me laugh when he’s called ‘Young Albus’ because I’m 45, so I’m more in the middle of a midlife crisis.” Of course, wizards live much longer than muggles, due to their magical blood, so for Dumbledore, 45 is actually quite young. (For context, Dumbledore was about 150 years old when he was killed by Snape in The Half-Blood Prince.)
Another intriguing detail is that it appears that Dumbledore will not be taking on his position of Transfiguration professor, at least not yet. It’s well-known that Dumbledore was a professor of that subject before becoming Headmaster of Hogwarts but Law kept his lips sealed. “At this stage in his career, he’s not. I’m not sure I’m allowed to say what he teaches,” he said.
Still, the folks at EW weren’t content with that non-answer, and through their own investigating (i.e. looking at some filming photography) they think that Dumbledore is likely teaching Defense Against the Dark Arts at this point. Whatever he’s teaching, we’ll have to wait to see it. The film is slated to release on November 16th, 2018.