Eddie Redmayne confirmed for Harry Potter spin-off

Eddie Redmayne confirmed for Harry Potter spin-off

Eddie Redmayne will take on the lead role in 'Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them'.

Warner Brothers have confirmed the 'Theory of Everything' star will play Newt Scamander, "the Wizarding World's preeminent magizoologist" in the hotly-anticipated prequel, reports Deadline.

The movie - based upon the eponymous book by J.K Rowling - takes place 70 years before Harry Potter and his friends arrive at Hogwarts and follows Newt as he travels the globe encountering and documenting "a myriad of magical creatures."

It was first announced last month Redmayne, 33, had entered into talks to take on the character and the movie's director David Yates is thrilled to officially have him on board.

Yates - who helmed the final four Harry Potter films in the eight-movie franchise - said in a statement: "Eddie is a fearless actor, brimming with invention, wit and humanity.

"I couldn't be more excited about the prospect of working with him as we start this new adventure in J.K. Rowling's wonderful world, and I know she feels the same way."

'Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them' is set for release next year.