The movie Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (rated PG-13) has found a new star in Faith Wood-Blagrove. The 10-year-old girl will play Modesty, who is described as a “haunted” character with an “inner strength and stillness.” Perhaps thanks to a little magic, the character “has an ability to see deep into people and understand them.”
Modesty Barebone is Mary Lou’s youngest adopted daughter. Mary Lou Barebone is a No-Maj and the outspoken leader of the New Salem Philanthropic Society (NSPS), otherwise known as the Second Salemers. Bent on exterminating all magic, Mary Lou fiercely crusades against the wizards and witches she is convinced live among them. She enlists her adopted children, who all live in fear of her wrath.
A bit precocious, Modesty manages to hide her disobedience from her strict mother. Playing her favorite game of hopscotch, she chants anti-witchcraft rhymes. But out of sight of her mother, she rebelliously scatters the Second Salemers leaflets to the four winds instead of passing them out.
Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling shared that she was excited to find Modesty, signaling that the character may be significant to Fantastic Beasts.
Fantastic Beasts producers held an open casting call in July 2015 to find a girl who could take on the part. Over 10,000 young girls, ages 8-12, showed up to audition for the role. The girls came with their families and waited for hours in line before getting the chance to audition. All of the girls received certificates after their auditions. About 100 girls were invited to move forward with the next round in the audition process. Out of the thousands of young actors who tried out for Modesty, 10-year-old Faith Wood-Blagrove from the UK was chosen for the role. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them will be her first movie
The career of Rupert Grint was launched in a similar way to Blagrove’s, also at the age of 10. He heard about the role of Ron in the Harry Potter movie, and then got cast from an open casting call. Evanna Lynch, who plays Luna Lovegood in the last four Harry Potter movies, also auditioned for her role through an open casting call after hearing about it on MuggleNet.
Faith will be working alongside Eddie Redmayne, who plays Newt Scamander. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them will be in theaters on November 18, 2016.