The Secrets of Dumbledore’ Ending Explained


The Big Picture

  • The Secrets of Dumbledore had a troubled production and was a box-office disappointment, earning less than its predecessors.
  • The film revealed the Dumbledore family secret, confirming that Credence is Albus Dumbledore’s illegitimate son.
  • The movie ends with battles, betrayals, and a joyful wedding while hinting at a connection to the Harry Potter movies but leaving Credence’s fate ambiguous.

The third installment in the Harry Potter prequel series certainly had a lot of questions to answer. Its predecessor, 2018’s Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, had ended with the shocking revelation that the Obscurus, Credence Barebone (Ezra Miller), was a member of the Dumbledore family. Credence is recruited to the dark arts by the evil wizard Grindelwald; Johnny Depp originally played the role, but in Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore, he was replaced by Mads Mikkelsen. The recasting was only part of the reason that The Secrets of Dumbledore had such a troubled production. J.K. Rowling’s transphobic comments shadowed the project, and many felt that The Crimes of Grindelwald had masked the romantic relationship between Grindelwald and Albus Dumbledore (Jude Law), in what could have been a great moment for LGBT+ representation in a blockbuster film.

The Secrets of Dumbledore was considered to be a box-office disappointment. After raking in the lowest weekend debut of the franchise thus far, the film has earned just shy of $400 million worldwide. This is a major drop from both of its predecessors; The Crimes of Grindelwald earned over $650 million, and the first Fantastic Beasts earned over $800 million. Reviews were also mixed; although critics felt that the sequel was an improvement over The Crimes of Grindelwald, it clocked in “rotten” with a RT tomatoes score of 47% from all critics. The future of the series is unclear. The Secrets of Dumbledore was scheduled to be released on DVD and Blu-Ray in June of 2022, but the film was made available for digital download on May 30, 2022. Warner Media decided to release the film on HBO Max the same day. If you’re catching up with The Secrets of Dumbledore (or you still don’t know what’s actually going on), here is everything you need to know about the ending of The Secrets of Dumbledore; for those who haven’t seen it yet, this contains full spoilers.

Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore

Professor Albus Dumbledore must assist Newt Scamander and his partners as Grindelwald begins to lead an army to eliminate all Muggles.

Release Date
April 15, 2022


132 minutes

Main Genre

J.K. Rowling , Steve Kloves

What Is the Dumbledore Family Secret?

The big “secret” about the Dumbledore family that the title promises is actually an explanation of the last film’s cliffhanger. Albus confirms to Credence early on in the film that he is in fact a Dumbledore, quashing any rumor that Grindelwald had lied to the young boy in order to sway him to his movement. It is explained that Credence is the illegitimate son of Albus’s younger brother, Aberforth (Richard Coyle). His real name is Aurelius Dumbledore.

Aberforth’s wife was murdered, and Aurelius was raised under the name Credence as an orphan. Albus encourages his brother to reach out to his son; Credence sends his father messages through the Mirror of Erised. Aberforth is reluctant to trust his brother, as he has always blamed Albus for the death of their sister, Ariana. Ariana was killed in a three-way duel between Grindelwald, Albus, and Aberforth after Aberforth grew suspicious of his brother’s involvement with the dark arts.

However, Albus and Aberforth grow closer, and Aberforth finally gets the chance to reunite with Credence. Credence betrays Grindelwald in front of the gathering of the wizarding world’s leaders in Bhutan, exposing his plot to rig the election of a new leader in his favor. Grindelwald had used his power and influence to avoid prison time, and he amassed even more followers who supported his campaign. Grindelwald was close to the position of power, but Credence reveals that he used necromancy to rig during the Walk of the Qilin ceremony that decided the new leader.

What Happens at the End of ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore’?

Albus and Aberforth join Newt Scamander (Eddie Redmayne), Tina Goldstein (Katherine Waterston), Jacob Kowalski (Dan Fogler), and their allies to save Credence and battle Grindelwald’s forces in Bhutan. Although Credence is brutally injured at the end of the battle, Aberforth accepts him, and they depart together. Albus and Aberforth show mutual respect for each other, paving the way for Aberforth’s role in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows- Part 2. An older Aberforth (Ciaran Hinds) serves as the bartender at the Hog’s Head and helps Harry and his friends sneak into Hogwarts.

Credence isn’t the only one to betray Grindelwald. One of the most controversial plot developments in The Crimes of Grindelwald was Queenie Goldstein’s (Alison Sudol) pledge to Grindelwald’s fascist movement. Queenie secretly spies on Grindelwald and gives him false information. The film ends with Queenie finally reuniting with her lover, Jacob. They wed during the last scene; it also gives Newt a chance to reunite with Queenie’s sister Tina. Jacob’s arc has been one of the few bright lights of the series.

What Happens Between Queenie and Jacob in ‘The Secrets of Dumbledore’?

Alison Sudol as Queenie and Dan Fogler as Jacob in Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore
Image via Warner Bros.

Queenie and Jacobs’ marriage is a joyous moment for the characters after their victory, but Albus is forced to watch from afar. He’s dealing with his own heartbreak. During the battle in Bhutan, Albus had been freed from his blood pact with Grindelwald. When the two wizards were young, they had sworn a romantic pledge to each other that prevented them from ever harming each other. This put a barrier between them, which prevented Albus from moving against Grindelwald directly.


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However, Grindelwald attempts to kill Albus, which breaks the mutual spell, allowing Albus to defend himself. They duel briefly, but Grindelwald realizes that his forces are outnumbered. He flees Bhutan, swearing that his fascist movement is far from over. Dumbledore takes care of his duties; he even refuses the leadership role that’s briefly presented to him during the Walk of the Qilin ceremony. Although he had become close with Jacob during the adventure, Albus stays outside of his muggle friend’s bakery during the wedding. He walks down the chilly street, in a parallel to the opening moments of the first film, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.

How Does the ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Series Connect to the ‘Harry Potter’ Movies?

The Fantastic Beasts series still has a ways to go before it reaches the Harry Potter timeline. We know from the Harry Potter films that Grindelwald is eventually apprehended, but the characters Newt, Tina, Queenie, and Jacob don’t appear in that series. Credence’s fate is also left ambiguous; while he was dying after the battle, he did not perish on screen.

The saga was originally intended to continue with two additional installments, with David Yates signing on to direct both sequels. Prior to the film’s release, Variety revealed that the next two films would be officially greenlit based on The Secrets of Dumbledore’s performance. While Mads Mikkelsen had expressed his enthusiasm about returning to play Grindelwald, the film’s disappointing financial performance raised some concerns about the franchise’s future. Recently, Yates revealed that the franchise has been parked, so we shouldn’t expect any further installments anytime soon. So while The Secrets of Dumbledore hints at more to come, the final wedding and Sorcerer’s Stone callback could also suffice as a conclusion to this chapter within the series.

Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore is available to stream on Max in the U.S.

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