Katherine Waterston is the latest name to be cast in the upcoming movie Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The British-born American actress will be playing the prominent role of Porpentina, a witch, in J.K. Rowling’s first ever screenplay.

The Hollywood Reporter broke the news that the Harry Potter spin-off had found its female lead, less than a week after it was confirmed that Oscar winner Eddie Redmayne will be playing the lead role of Newt Scamander.

Katherine WaterstonKatherine Waterston will be joining Eddie Redmayne in 'Fantastic Beasts'

Waterston, 35, recently starred in the Paul Thomas Anderson-directed movie Inherent Vice, will be playing a character described by the report as “a witch who operates in the US” as opposed to an American witch, alongside Redmayne. The story is set 70 years before Harry, Hermione and friends’ adventures, and concerns the author of the first-year textbook they use in those film.

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Scamander is described as a “magizoologist”, who meets Porpentina in New York City when he stops off on his global adventure to track down and document rare and mythical creatures.

Rowling has previously stated about the new film: “Although it will be set in the worldwide community of witches and wizards where I was so happy for 17 years, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them is neither a prequel nor a sequel to the Harry Potter series but an extension of the wizarding world.”

The Harry Potter films are currently the second-highest-grossing movie franchise in history, with $7.7 billion in global box office receipts. ‘Fantastic Beasts’, currently conceived as a separate trilogy of films, looks set to coin it in on the back of those movies’ reputations.

To provide some continuity, Fantastic Beasts will be directed by David Heyman, who helmed the last four of those films. It is due to be released on November 18th, 2016.

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