“I’m not permitted to say anything in regards to that!” shouts Zoë Kravitz, resounding the most widely recognized thing we get from on-screen characters in the most recent super-mystery Harry Potter prequel Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald.
What’s more, no big surprise: The 29-year-old on-screen character/vocalist/show plays the strange Leta (articulated lee-tah) Lestrange, Newt Scamander’s (Eddie Redmayne) previous “dear companion” from his Hogwarts days who imparts a surname to a standout amongst the most infamous dim wizards ever, Bellatrix Estrange (Helena Bonham Carter in the Potter movies), and who’s reputed to be the stepsister of disturbed Credence Barebone (Ezra Miller) — which is the theme she’s prohibited from talking about.
But as the executive producer David Heyman said, Leta might simply get misunderstood. “Leta is in some ways burdened by her name,” he says. “The fact that she is a Lestrange has led some people to believe her to be a bad person. But as with a lot of J.K. Rowling’s writing, you have a rich complex character, and it’s one that Zoe brings to life.”
On the other hand Redmayne asserts, of Newt’s relationship with Leta: “It’s one of those relationships where there was definitely great love there, there was also romance, but was it ever a full blown relationship? I don’t know. But certainly she’s somebody who has touched [Newt] hugely and at the beginning of this film you realize she’s in a relationship with his brother so, of course, that comes with great complications.”
On asking about Leta by a journalist, she said – We’ve only seen her previously in a photograph from Newt’s office. They’re friends from childhood when they went to Hogwarts. They have quite a special bond and she was always looked at as an outcast, just as Newt was. Now he’s come back into town and learns she’s become engaged to his brother Theseus, so that’s an awkward situation.
On the character in the film she says – I think that’s a bit of a harsh judgment! Newt is such an awkward person he has a hard time standing up for himself, maybe he doesn’t vocalize what he feels and it looks like he’s getting walked on. But Leta is a compassionate person, especially towards Newt. But she’s also a powerful person, a force, and that could become a problem between them.