The original concept behind Fantastic Beasts and Where To Find Them was a simple one: Newt Scamander, lover of these aforementioned beasts, travels with them to a foreign city. The Beasts get loose, chaos ensues. Much of this is now taking a back seat to the upcoming main event of Dumbledore v. Grindelwald in Fantastic Beasts 5. But the wizarding world doesn't want fans to think the beasts are entirely out of the picture. The new trailer had plenty, and now images of baby Nifflers in Fantastic Beasts 2 are melting Potterhead hearts everywhere.
The character of the Niffler was Newt's main animal sidekick in the first film. According to the Harry Potter Wiki:
Nifflers were rodent-like creatures with a long snout similar to that of a platypus and a coat of black, fluffy fur. Native to Britain, they lived in burrows as deep as twenty feet below ground, and produced six to eight young in a single litter... gentle by nature and could even be affectionate towards their owners. However, they could destroy belongings looking for sparkly objects, and for that reason it was inadvisable to keep them as a house pet.
That bit about the litters is apparently going to be important in this installment of the franchise because it looks like Newt's little buddy has been getting busy.
The original full-grown Niffler fans met in the first film looked a little like a dark-haired gopher but with a beak like a duck-billed platypus. The baby version leans into the platypus comparison but as this is not a monotremes animal (a mammal that lays eggs) nor does it have a marsupial pouch, they crossed it with something far cuter, like a calico kitten.
The love of shiny objects starts early though from the looks of both these images. The concept art shows the ginger marking on the one in front of Newt is just one colorway. According to Entertainment Weekly, these markings are not only endemic to baby Nifflers, with their coats then darkening upon reaching maturity. In fact, "Nifflers come in different fur colors aside from classic black."
The Nifflers aren't the only fantastical beasts Newt will tangle with during his spy thriller adventure on Dumbledore's behalf. After all, it wouldn't make sense to keep calling the franchise Fantastic Beasts if there weren't at least a few running around. There's Credence's friend, who is a Maledictus. There are the terrifyingly large members of the cat family with giant fluorescent blue eyes. Hopefully, Pottermore will get details on which creatures these animals are sooner rather than later.
There's also that giant, inquisitive bird giving poor Jacob the stink eye, and a giant, hairy behemoth making Newt jump nearly a foot in the middle of the Paris streets. So, even if Dumbledore is musing that Newt's faithfulness to him is proof he's a monster, fans can rest assured there no replacing the real beasts in Scamander's heart.
Fantastic Beasts: The Curse of Grindelwald arrives in theaters this coming Nov. 16, 2018.