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Behind the scenes of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: Times Square in the 1920s

The Fantastic Beasts design team took New York’s iconic Times Square back to the 1920s. Here’s a glimpse at just some of the amazing details they created.

1926 Times Square

It was no mean feat of the Fantastic Beasts crew – led by award-winning production designer Stuart Craig – to recreate 1920s New York locations in the backlot of Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden.

The New York backlot set included part of Times Square’s iconic theatre district, complete with flashing commercial signs. ‘Today they are LEDs, but back then they were old-fashioned tungsten light bulbs, hundreds and thousands of light bulbs and that is what we have tried to recreate,’ says Craig.

Times Square designs from Case of Beasts
Layouts © HarperCollins Publishers/© WBEI. (s18) Case of Beasts

Once filming had wrapped, the film’s graphic artists, Miraphora Mina and Eduardo Lima, spent two and a half months working, in conjunction with the VFX team, on the graphics for the sequence and delivering signage, theatre exteriors, advertising hoardings and posters, including cast lists, orchestra names, and even quotes from critics and reviews.

Times Square images from Case of Beasts
Layouts © HarperCollins Publishers/© WBEI. (s18) Case of Beasts

Enjoy more amazing artwork and learn more behind-the-scenes facts in The Case of Beasts, by Mark Salisbury and published by Harper Collins.