15 Harry Potter references in 'Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them'

by Shanee Edwards
Nov 18, 2016 at 9:30 p.m. ET

Fantastic Beasts has many delightful ties to Harry Potter, making the new film fresh and familar at the same time.

1 /15: Pickett the bowtruckle

1/15 :Pickett the bowtruckle

Pickett the bowtruckle has "attachment issues," according to Newt (Eddie Redmayne) in Fantastic Beasts, but it's clear to us that Pickett just adores his keeper. Bowtruckles are mentioned in the Harry Potter books, but this the first time we get to meet one of these adorable little creatures on film.

2 /15: Luna Lovegood

2/15 :Luna Lovegood

We first met Luna Lovegood (Evanna Lynch) in Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, where her affection for all the dazzling, remarkable animals was made clear. Though the books don't detail the later years of Luna's life, J.K. Rowling has said that Luna married Rolf Scamander. Rolf is the grandson of Newt Scamander, the star of Fantastic Beasts, who also shares Luna's love of cuddly critters. 

3 /15: Percival Graves's secret

3/15 :Percival Graves's secret

Percival Graves (Colin Farrell) is the head of MACUSA, the American wizarding world's governing body, but he also has a dark secret. Percival's identity has been assumed by Gellert Grindelwald, a former friend of Dumbledore and considered to be one of the most dangerous dark wizards in the Harry Potter universe. Perhaps Grindelwald used a Polyjuice Potion to help him morph into Percival.

4 /15: Hedwig's music

4/15 :Hedwig's music

If some of the music sounds familiar, that's because it is. Composer James Newton Howard was smart to include Hedwig's theme (composed by John Williams) in his score to make the audience feel like they were visiting old friends.

5 /15: 'No-Maj' is American for 'muggle'

5/15 :'No-Maj' is American for 'muggle'

We all know the Brits and Americans often have different names for the same things (like lift vs. elevator), so it's no surprise that there are two different names for people without magical abilities. On our side of the pond, we say "No-Maj," not "muggle."

6 /15: The spells that stuck around

6/15 :The spells that stuck around

We love the powerful magic from the Harry Potter world, so we were thrilled to find several familiar spells in Fantastic Beasts. Tina (Katherine Waterston) uses the "Obliviate" spell to erase Jacob's (Dan Fogler) memory. Newt casts "Petrificus Totalus," also called the Full Body-Bind, which freezes people in place. The "Alohomora" charm is used to unlock windows and doors, and Tina uses the summoning charm “Accio” to confiscate Percival's wand.

7 /15: Rivalry between Hogwarts & Ilvermorny

7/15 :Rivalry between Hogwarts & Ilvermorny

Ever since the American Revolution, Americans and Brits have had varying degrees of rivalry, so it’s no wonder that Queenie (Alison Sudol) thinks the American magic school Ilvermorny is much better than Hogwarts. Newt, however, wholeheartedly disagrees — he’s Team Hogwarts all the way.

8 /15: Deathly Hallows symbol

8/15 :Deathly Hallows symbol

In Fantastic Beasts, Percival needs Credence’s (Ezra Miller) help to track down an unknown child with powerful magic. To protect Credence, Percival gives him a familiar necklace that bears the symbol of the Deathly Hallows — that famous circle inside a triangle that is bisected by the Elder Wand.

9 /15: Quip about Quidditch

9/15 :Quip about Quidditch

Mary Lou (Samantha Morton) leads the anti-witch posse, called the Second Salemers, who want to rid the world of witches and wizards by any means possible. When Mary Lou asks Newt if he is a "seeker after truth," he responds by saying, "I'm more of a chaser, really," which is a reference to the broomstick-based game Quidditch from the Harry Potter universe.

10 /15: The lovely Legilimens

10/15 :The lovely Legilimens

Queenie uses the power of legilimency, the act of magically reading a person’s mind, though Newt becomes quite annoyed as she uses the power on him. Other Harry Potter characters who were also Legilimens include Albus Dumbledore, Bellatrix Lestrange, Severus Snape and Voldemort.

11 /15: Lita Lestrange

11/15 :Lita Lestrange

When Queenie discovers a photo of a young woman among Newt's personal things, she inquires about the woman's identity. Newt evades the question, making us think the mystery woman broke Newt's heart. When Queenie reads Newt's mind, we find out the mystery woman is Lita Lestrange, a relative of the wizard Rodolphus Lestrange. The woman in the photo is actress Zoe Kravitz, who will no doubt be making an appearance in the upcoming films.

12 /15: Dragon pox

12/15 :Dragon pox

Sisters Tina and Queenie reveal that their parents died tragically from dragon pox, a disease that has plagued various characters in the Harry Potter world, including the Moldovan national Quidditch team. Similar to the No-Maj virus smallpox, dragon pox only affects witches and wizards, leaving a lasting greenish color on the skin.

13 /15: Thunderbird

13/15 :Thunderbird

The thunderbird, named Frank by Newt after he rescued the fowl from traffickers in Egypt, is like the American version of a hippogriff. Native to Arizona, the thunderbird has a lot of similarities to another mythical bird, the phoenix, also mentioned in the Harry Potter films.

14 /15: Niffler

14/15 :Niffler

Once kept by goblins to burrow for buried treasure, nifflers have wreaked a lot of havoc in two Harry Potter films. In Fantastic Beasts, the niffler chases after all kinds of shiny things and creates some big but hilarious trouble for Newt.

15 /15: Billywig

15/15 :Billywig

This fantastic beast is like a blue butterfly, only its wings are attached to its head. It also has a stinger that causes extreme giddiness. Billywig wings are mentioned in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them opens in theaters today.