Warning: Spoilers for ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’ lie ahead! Stop reading now, unless you have a Time Turner to use afterward!
‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’ did not go easy on fans when it came to twists and turns in the plot. One of the biggest unexpected moments came when Queenie Goldstein (Alison Sudol) defected to the dark side, joining Grindelwald (Johnny Depp) in his fight to wipe out muggles. The move seemed completely out of character for Queenie, who was portrayed as a big hearted, compassionate, and strong character in the first film.
In 2016’s ‘Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them,’ Queenie falls in love with muggle Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler), despite the danger their relationship could put them both in. In the sequel, Queenie and Jacob go to Paris where Newt (Eddie Redmayne) realizes that Queenie has put Jacob under a love spell and Jacob believes she has gone a little “crazy.” Queenie continues to spiral, unable to block out the thoughts of passerby on the streets and ultimately being seduced by Grindelwald when he promises to change the world, giving couples like Queenie and Jacob the chance to be together freely.
In a recent interview, Sudol reveals that she too was initially confused about Queenie’s sudden change. She said:
“I was like, wait, how did this happen? It took a long time in my imagination to even begin to understand. And throughout the course of the film, to just begin to reconcile who she was in the beginning with the choices that she makes and realize she isn’t a different person she’s just abandoned in a really untenable circumstance.”
She alludes that her character’s power to read the minds of those around her could have been her downfall, saying:
“I feel like in some ways she’s too there and that’s part of the problem. She’s tapping into all human beings at all times and that’s a lot for one person to hold and everybody closest to her is always going, ‘Don’t read my mind.’ So she has a huge power and yet is made to feel like she’s nothing and that’s bad. That could make anyone feel crazy. And women historically have this huge intuition and have been punished for that intuition forever. How many women have been in a mental institution because they’ve been called crazy when they’re just not allowed to be honest or be who they are?”
In the pivotal scene where Queenie crosses the fire to join Grindelwald, Sudol explains that the character was feeling abandoned, and Grindelwald was there to pick up the pieces. She said:
“Jacob doesn’t come with her. It’s not so much about Jacob not coming with her to the dark side, it’s like, ‘Jacob, walk with me, we’re in this together.’ And she doesn’t have those two, so who does she have? Newt’s kind of betrayed her — he called her out, it was embarrassing. What does she have?”
Queenie fans shouldn’t give up hope, as Sudol believes the character hasn’t gone bad but is being driven by her desire to do good. She explained:
“I still believe in her heart of hearts she’s going over to fight what she believes in. Grindelwald is saying, ‘we’re creating a different world’ and the world that she is in is broken. I don’t believe she’s turning evil. It’s more like she’s trying to find somebody who is giving her an option. He’s manipulating her but he’s manipulating everybody. He even did that with Dumbledore.”
‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’ is in theaters now!