Thursday 25th Aug 2016
Playing a witch or wizard means you’re going to need a wand. Fantastic Beasts actress Carmen Ejogo reveals what it was like to get her hands on Seraphina's wand, and why she cannot wait to use it.
You can’t miss Carmen Ejogo in the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them trailer. She stands in front of the Magical Congress of the United States of America seal, decked in exquisite robes and an extravagant headpiece, with bright-white kiss curls escaping onto both cheeks.
The lauded actress plays MACUSA President Seraphina Picquery, the leader of the North American wizarding community in 1926.
Out of respect for Seraphina herself (she’s not the kind of character you disobey happily), we can’t give away too much about her yet. For now, all we can really give you are hints: she's charismatic, formidable, influential. She’s an important figure in the wizarding society of 1926 New York. Extremely important.
When Carmen speaks to me, she’s head-to-toe in costume. A charming enthusiasm reaches her face when she tells me about the first time she saw her character’s purple wand.
‘It is so beautiful! I am so in love with my wand. Maybe subconsciously I willed the designers to give me the one with the big gem on it,’ she says, twinkle-eyed.
And then earnestly: ‘Ezra [Miller] was telling me that there are very different schools of wandmakers. He was quite taken aback by mine because he recognised it was made by a very different wandmaker than he was accustomed to. It really does stand out among the other wands.’
Oh, does it ever. Between you and me, I’ve held Seraphina’s wand. It weighs more than you expect it to and sits in your palm like a precious piece of jewellery. It’s almost like the wand has a mind of its own. Which, as you know in J.K. Rowling’s world, is quite true.
But when will we see what it can do?
‘There’s going to be something very, very powerful coming out of that wand when it’s needed,’ says Carmen. ‘The wrath of Seraphina is yet to emerge from it. But it’s elegant and regal, which probably reveals something of her personality.
'I don’t think that [Seraphina] is ostentatious in any way, but I do think she is commanding and she knows the power that she yields. That wand represents that power. You can tell that something epic will happen when it’s used. Seraphina’s kind of like that. She’s epic.’