Introducing Fantastic Beasts: The Wonder of Nature
Visitors will see creatures, specimens and artefacts from the Museum's world-leading scientific collection displayed side by side with elements from the wizarding world – which will be immediately recognisable to fans of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts stories and the film series of the same names.
Combining the creative power of film, television, literature and science, Fantastic Beasts: The Wonder of Nature is a partnership between the Natural History Museum, the BBC and Warner Bros. which has been developed to shine a light on beasts in all their fantastic forms, including those created by J.K. Rowling both in her stories and in the Fantastic Beasts film series.
Opening in spring 2020 at London’s Natural History Museum, this spectacular exhibition, which is the Museum’s most ambitious exhibition to date, will showcase creatures from the natural, mythical worlds and the Wizarding World.
In the Museum's breathtaking Waterhouse Gallery, viewers will encounter legendary beasts next to dazzling specimens and historic objects from the world-leading scientific collection. Spellbinding digital installations and iconic wizarding world elements from the Fantastic Beasts film series will add an extra touch of magic.
For the first time, visitors will see a tiger and a Galápagos marine iguana alongside wizarding world specimens including an Erumpent horn and the dragon skull from Professor Lupin's classroom. They will learn about the character of Magizoologist Newt Scamander, who made his first appearance in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Like the Museum's own scientists, Newt also dedicates his life to better understanding and protecting wildlife and the environments they rely on.
Clare Matterson CBE, Executive Director of Engagement at the Natural History Museum, says:
'Bringing characters from the wizarding world together with some of the most fantastic creatures from the natural world will produce a captivating experience that will show how the natural world has inspired legends and stories that have enthralled generations.’
'A spectacular celebration of science and nature packed full of surprises and mesmeric experiences, it will be impossible to leave without wanting to learn more about the wonders of our planet and how we can all better protect it.'
Visitors will be able to compare the camouflage tactics of a jaguar to that of the wizarding world's Demiguise and the mating rituals of the peacock spider to the wizarding world's Erumpent. They will also come face to face with a giant oarfish, the world's longest bony fish. This monster of the oceans is thought to be the inspiration for mythical sea serpents around the world.
Towards the end of the exhibition, visitors will discover that, like many of the fantastic beasts, real-world animals need our help. Taking inspiration from the stories of dedicated conservationists and scientists and inspired by Newt's commitment to the beasts in the wizarding world, visitors will leave with a clear understanding of why it is more important than ever to care for and protect the rich biodiversity of our planet.
BBC One – Fantastic Beasts: A Natural History (w/t)
BBC One today announces a magical new commission, Fantastic Beasts: A Natural History (w/t). Produced in partnership with London’s Natural History Museum and Warner Bros. Entertainment and presented by Stephen Fry, the documentary will explore the origins and stories of mythical creatures and fantastical beasts and explore their history and connections with animals roaming the planet today.
This spellbinding BBC One special will take viewers on an incredible journey from the hidden corridors of London's Natural History Museum to the frozen steppes of Siberia and secret caves of Madagascar. From centaurs to Nifflers, birds of paradise to the Phoenix, 11,000-year-old woolly rhinos to the Erumpent and giant squid to the Zouwu, the gripping stories and surprising science behind specimens in the Natural History Museum will take viewers on a global journey of discovery and draw parallels between the real world and the fabulous worlds of mythology and literature – including the Wizarding World.
Offering exclusive access behind the scenes at both the Natural History Museum and Warner Bros. Studios, the documentary will dive deep into the bewitching secrets, marvellous wonders and surprising truths behind a host of fantastic beasts, both real and imagined.
Footage from the BBC Natural History Unit’s extensive treasure trove of archive content, alongside spellbinding scenes from the Fantastic Beasts franchise will show how closely real-world animals, mythological creatures and Wizarding World beasts are intertwined.
Stephen Fry said: “I could not be more delighted to be a part of this magnificent opportunity for us Muggles to show the wizarding world that the fantastic beasts in our world are more than a match for theirs. Joining forces with the combined powers of the fabulous BBC, its legendary Natural History Unit and the magical Natural History Museum we hope to be able to bring you closer than you’ve ever been to some of the most spectacular and extraordinary creatures ever seen.”
Josh Berger CBE, President & MD, Warner Bros. Entertainment UK and President, Harry Potter Global Franchise Development, says: 'It is hugely exciting to be working with the Natural History Museum and the BBC Natural History Unit, such iconic British institutions, on a project which has such a great purpose at its heart. I hope both fans of the Wizarding World and the natural world will enjoy the exhibition and documentary immensely.'
For the latest announcements on when Fantastic Beasts: A Natural History will air, check out www.bbc.co.uk/mediacentre.
This is a partnership brought together by On Purpose Group.
The exhibition Fantastic Beasts: The Wonder of Nature opens in spring 2020 and will run for seven months before embarking on an international tour.
The first release of tickets will go on sale on Thursday 16 January. Sign up here for priority booking: https://www.nhm.ac.uk/discover/news/2020/january/new-exhibition-fantastic-beasts-the-wonder-of-nature.html
New and existing members of the Natural History Museum will have guaranteed, free entry throughout the exhibition. More details to be announced.
Bloomsbury, the original publisher of the Harry Potter books, will be working closely with the experts at the Natural History Museum to bring this exploration to life on the page, as well as the Pottermore Publishing team, who will bring their digital and audiobook expertise to the project.
Creative partner Framestore, will be bringing beasts to life for this exhibition. The multi BAFTA and Oscar-winning creative studio is internationally renowned for its work on iconic animated characters across film, television, advertising and immersive virtual reality experiences.
Google Arts & Culture
The Museum will also partner with Google Arts & Culture to create immersive digital content, allowing global audiences to experience some of the wonder of the exhibition wherever they are in the world.
Stay up to date with the exhibition by following the official hashtag #NHMFantasticBeasts and the Museum's Twitter account @NHM_London.
Notes to Editors
Media contact: Tel: +44 (0) 20 7942 5095 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Images of two scientists from the Museum collecting the Erumpent horn available here.
Roberto Portela Miguez and Efstratia Verveniotou, scientists at the Natural History Museum, collect an Erumpent horn for the Natural History Museum's major new exhibition Fantastic Beasts: The Wonder of Nature, which will open Spring 2020. In the words of Newt Scamander, the Erumpent is a large grey African beast of great power from the wizarding world. Weighing up to a tonne, the Erumpent may be mistaken for a rhinoceros at a distance.
About Natural History Museum
The Natural History Museum exists to inspire a love of the natural world and unlock answers to the big issues facing humanity and the planet. It is a world-leading science research centre, and through its unique collection and unrivalled expertise it is tackling issues such as food security, eradicating diseases and managing resource scarcity. The Natural History Museum is the most visited natural history museum in Europe and the top science attraction in the UK. We welcome around five million visitors each year and our website receives over a million visitors per month. People come from around the world to enjoy our galleries and events and engage both in person and online with our science and educational activities through innovative programmes and citizen science projects.
About Warner Bros. Entertainment
Warner Bros. Entertainment is a fully integrated, broad-based entertainment company and a global leader in the creation, production, distribution, licensing and marketing of all forms of entertainment and their related businesses. A WarnerMedia company, the Studio is home to one of the most successful collections of brands in the world and stands at the forefront of every aspect of the entertainment industry, from feature film, television and home entertainment production and worldwide distribution to DVD and Blu-ray, digital distribution, animation, comic books, videogames, product and brand licensing, and broadcasting. The company’s vast library, one of the most prestigious and valuable in the world, consists of more than 100,000 hours of programming, 8,600 feature films and 5,000 television programs comprised of tens of thousands of individual episodes.
About Warner Bros. Consumer Products
Warner Bros. Consumer Products (WBCP), a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company, extends the Studio's powerful portfolio of entertainment brands and franchises into the lives of fans around the world. WBCP partners with best-in-class licensees globally on an award-winning range of toys, fashion, home décor, and publishing inspired by franchises and properties such as DC, J.K. Rowling's Wizarding World, Looney Tunes and Hanna-Barbera. The division's successful global themed entertainment business includes groundbreaking experiences such as The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and Warner Bros. World Abu Dhabi. With innovative global licensing and merchandising programs, retail initiatives, promotional partnerships and themed experiences, WBCP is one of the leading licensing and retail merchandising organizations in the world.
About Wizarding World
More than two decades ago, a young Harry Potter was whisked onto Platform 9¾ at King's Cross Station, and readers everywhere were swept along with him into a magical universe, created by J.K. Rowling. In the years since, the seven Harry Potter bestsellers have inspired eight blockbuster movies, an award-winning stage play, and, more recently, the start of the Fantastic Beasts five-film series. People of all ages have been enthralled by these extraordinary adventures, set within an expanding universe, inspired by the vision of J.K. Rowling. For today's growing worldwide fan community, and for generations to come, the Wizarding World welcomes everyone to explore more of this magical universe - past, present and future. The Wizarding World also provides fans with an instant, trusted kite-mark of quality and authenticity.
About BBC Studios Natural History Unit
Natural History Unit produces the world’s most iconic natural history programmes, such as Blue Planet II and Planet
Earth II, which have been watched by more than a billion people globally. Ranging from technically challenging live shows and super-landmarks to long-running series and children’s content, The Natural History Unit programmes include Dynasties, Blue Planet Live, Springwatch, Animal Babies: First Year On Earth, Andy’s Dinosaur Adventures, Seven Worlds, One Planet presented by Sir David Attenborough and third-party commissions for Discovery, Apple, Quibi, National Geographic and BBC America. The Natural History Unit is part of BBC Studios, a subsidiary of the BBC, which develops, produces and distributes bold, British content, making over 2500 hours of content each year, operating in 22 markets globally and generating revenue of around £1.4bn. In the year to March 2019, it returned £243m to the BBC Group, complementing the BBC’s licence fee and enhancing programmes for UK audiences.
Framestore is an Oscar and BAFTA-winning creative studio that uses innovative talent and technology to create high-end images for every platform. Framestore partners with clients ranging from Hollywood studios through to advertisers, ad agencies, production companies and video game developers. In addition to being recognised for its globally celebrated visual effects, Framestore has more recently made its name as an innovator in the digital space by focusing on the immersive engagement potential of interactive visual effects.
About Google Arts & Culture
Google Arts & Culture puts the collections of more than 2,000 museums at your fingertips. It's an immersive way to explore art, history and the wonders of the world, from Van Gogh's bedroom paintings to the women's rights movement and the Taj Mahal. The Google Arts & Culture app is free and available online for iOS and Android. Our team has been an innovation partner for cultural institutions since 2011. We develop technologies that help preserve and share culture and allow curators to create engaging exhibitions online and offline, inside museums. Read about our latest projects on the Google Keyword blog.
About On Purpose Group
Partnership brought together by On Purpose Group. On Purpose Group develops ground-breaking, high-impact content that encourages people to change their behaviour for the benefit of the planet.
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