Clues and theories about the Harry Potter prequel

The first photos from the filming of the upcoming Harry Potter prequel Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them have hit the Internet, courtesy of a spread in Entertainment Weekly. And they gave the world something to do for the next year—namely pore over every image like stills from the Zapruder film to suss out any possible clue or hint about what exactly the movie is about. Luckily, we have some fantastic theories—and you can find them right here.

There Is A Hogwarts Connection

Pretty much everything we know about the film's lead character, Newt Scamander, comes from the brief "about the author" note in J.K. Rowling's 2001 book Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. The book itself is just a compendium of magical monsters, with no actual narrative, but we do know from his bio that Newt attended Hogwarts. And it looks as though that Hogwarts connection is going to be played up in the movie, because if you look closely, you'll notice that Newt is actually wearing his Hufflepuff scarf in one of the photos. Could a flashback, or even a visit to Hogwarts, be in store?

New York City Is A Main Character

When you think of fantastic beasts in the Harry Potter universe, wild and remote areas of the world come to mind. You know, the northern mountains of Norway where their Ridgeback dragons come from. Or the Forbidden Forest, home to Aragog and his legion of giant spiders. Yet it seems as though the "where to find them" portion of the movie's title is actually referring to downtown Manhattan, of all places. Every one of the photos is set in the Big Apple, and the way those sets are crafted and lovingly shot, it looks like New York won't just be a location, it will be a main character.

There's A Surprising Lack Of Fantastic Beasts

Given that the whole premise of this movie is a guy finding fantastic beasts, we couldn't help but notice that there are exactly zero fantastic beasts pictured in any of the photos. Now, some people might chalk this up to the fact that the movie doesn't come out until November, 2016. Since special effects are usually the last step in the production process, and the beasts are almost certainly going to be entirely CGI, maybe there just aren't any beasts around to show. But we think there's a little more to it. Oh, there will be beasts aplenty, but we have a feeling the real drama is going to all involve witches and wizards—which is why we don't even need to see a single skittering claw to get excited for this one.

Colin Farrell's Character Is Too Evil To Spoil

Hey, remember that whole "there aren't any beasts in the photos" thing we just finished talking about? Well, there's someone else missing too, and his name rhymes with Folin Carrell. So why is Colin Farrell so significantly absent from these pictures? Given that his character is named Graves, we have a weird feeling he just might be the bad guy. And the lack of photos gives us another clue. Remember how aghast everyone was when we first got a glimpse of Voldemort's creepy, noseless snake-face? The fact that Farrell is being kept under wraps suggests that there may be a surprise or two waiting for us when his full evil is finally unveiled.

Newt Is A Street Fighting Man

One of the big things in the original Harry Potter series is that the events of the wizarding wars were kept as secret as possible from the muggle community at large. Sure, right at the end there was some fighting out in London around Big Ben and stuff, but for the most part even the bad guys kept their nefarious activities under wraps. That's what makes this action shot of Newt so surprising: he's standing in the middle of a New York street in broad daylight waving his wand around. Just what menace is so dangerous that secrecy is no longer a concern at all? We're not sure, but it looks as though Newt is prepared to take his fight to the streets—even if that means the muggles find out about magic.

Don't Trust Queenie!

We know from the book that we can trust Katherine Waterston's character Porpentina Goldstein, since—SPOILER ALERT—she and Newt end up getting married and living happily ever after. But after seeing these pictures, we're not so sure we can trust Porpentina's sister, Queenie. If there's one thing we've learned from watching old film noir movies, it's that sensuous flappers are pretty much always very, very dangerous. And just look at how actress Alison Sudol is holding her wand! That's not right, guys. She looks like she's about to stab someone's eyes out. We're not saying she's downright evil or anything; these kind of femme fatales rarely are. But it says here that one way or another, she's going to cause Newt a lot of trouble before this is over. Don't trust Queenie!