Early reviews are coming in for Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore. And while reviews for the whole film are mixed, Mads Mikkelsen has received acclaim for his portrayal of the villain Gellert Grindelwald, a role formerly played by Johnny Depp. Depp was asked to leave the franchise in 2020 due to legal issues regarding abuse allegations from his ex-wife Amber Heard. Mikkelsen was quickly given the role, and many fans were skeptical. However, according to Cinema Blend, critics who have seen the film appear to be very impressed with Mikkelsen’s performance. Robbie Cullen of The Telegraph even went as far as to say that Mikkelsen “should have been cast from the start.”
Critics Praise Mads Mikkelsen in ‘The Secrets of Dumbledore’
Kristen Accuna of Insider said that Depp’s portrayal of Grindelwald “comically looked like another bizarre invention out of the actor’s menagerie of eccentric characters he’s played over the years. In contrast, Mikkelsen plays Grindelwald with a suave, charming charisma that convinces you of why anyone would be seduced by this alluring, handsome wizard and be suckered into fighting a war for him.” Brian Truitt of USA Today said Mikkelsen “feels more dangerous, as he wields a public charm as crowd-pleasing, manipulative man of the people while hiding his inherent ruthless cruelty.” While not all critics are fans of this portrayal, preferring Depp’s extravagant take on Grindelwald, Mikkelsen is receiving generally positive praise.
Can Mads Mikkelsen Save The Franchise?
Even with Mikkelsen getting acclaim for his work as the villainous wizard, The Secrets of Dumbledore faces some obstacles that could harm its chances of success. Some fear the franchise may not make it to the end. In recent years, J.K. Rowling has been a subject of controversy for statements and tweets that have been deemed transphobic. Additionally, the previous film in the franchise (The Crimes of Grindelwald) proved to be a major disappointment that has turned many fans away from the Fantastic Beasts series. Finally, another notable actor from the series faces legal issues that may cause audiences to avoid the film. Ezra Miller, who plays Credence Barebone, was recently arrested for disorderly conduct in Hawaii, leading to criminal charges and a restraining order. Miller’s history of bad behavior, which led to The Flash being delayed until 2023, could be harmful to The Secrets of Dumbledore at the box office.
The film will release on April 15.
Are you happy to hear Mads Mikkelsen is getting acclaim as Gellert Grindelwald? Does it make you optimistic about Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore? Or does all the controversy surrounding the film make you not want to see it? Share your thought on The Nerd Stash Facebook page and @TheNerdStash on Twitter.