The upcoming Blu-ray release of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald features some choice quotes from writer J.K. Rowling and director David Yates regarding the are-they/aren’t-they relationship between Albus Dumbledore and Gellert Grindelwald.
Radio Times reports that, on the special features of the disc, Rowling says the following:
Their relationship was incredibly intense. It was passionate, and it was a love relationship. But as happens in any relationship, gay or straight or whatever label we want to put on it, one never knows really what the other person is feeling. You can’t know, you can believe you know.
So I’m less interested in the sexual side – though I believe there is a sexual dimension to this relationship – than I am in the sense of the emotions they felt for each other, which ultimately is the most fascinating thing about all human relationships.
In the same piece, Radio Times also writes that Yates reportedly says, “This is a story about two men who loved each other, and ultimately have to fight each other. It’s a story for the 21st century.”
The history of Yates and Rowling being cagey on the subject of sexuality is well-documented and something very common in Hollywood these days. But these new comments somehow make things even worse, because now they’re implying this gay relationship is the crux of the whole Fantastic Beasts story. And, if that’s true, almost none of it is dealt with directly on the screen. It’s all implied in the margins. Which would almost be okay if the pair were equally vague about it but, obviously, they are not. Rowling literally says she believes their relationship has a “sexual dimension.”
Rowling is well-known for adding context to her work in the press, and I urge you to check out some of our other blogs on it below. Ultimately, though, it comes down to this: In light of these quotes bolstering the relationship between Dumbledore and Grindelwald, who here thinks it gets anymore explicit in the next movie? Anyone? Anyone?