14,000 girls queue for Harry Potter spin-off open auditions

The young hopefuls arrived from dawn in the hope of starring alongside Eddie Redmayne in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

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Thousands of girls have attended an open audition for Harry spin-off Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

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It is estimated that around 14,000 girls aged between eight and 12 queued up outside the Excel Centre, an exhibition centre in east London. Doors opened at 9am but the young hopefuls and their parents started arriving at dawn.

Warner Brothers are looking for a girl to play the role of Modesty, who is described as “a haunted young girl.” The character is said to have “an inner strength and stillness” as well as “an ability to see deep into people and understand them.”

Eddie Redmayne has already been cast as the main character, magizoologist Newt Scamander, while Katherine Waterson is his wife Porpentina and singer-songwriter Alison Sudol will make her film debut as her younger sister Queenie.

Set in New York City around 70 years before the Boy Who Lived’s well-known story begins, Fantastic Beasts is “neither a prequel nor a sequel to the Harry Potter series”, according to Rowling, “but an extension of the wizarding world.”

The film – which is the author’s screenwriting debut – is based on a Hogwart’s textbook of the same name that details 75 magical species found around the world and contains the history of Magizoology. The plot is being kept under wraps but many fans believe it will be about Newt’s travels around the world. 

Rowling isn’t involved in the casting but sent an excited message in support.

Others have tweeted pictures of the long queues:

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Many of the young cast members in the Harry Potter films were chosen through open auditions, including Rupert Grint who played best friend Ron Weasley.

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