Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore sees Credence’s phoenix play a larger role. But is the phoenix really Fawkes from Harry Potter?
Fantastic Beasts: Dumbledore’s Secrets shows Credence’s phoenix, but is the creature supposed to be the famous Fawkes? Dumbledore’s Secrets, the third episode of the fantastic beasts franchise, brought back Credence, who was revealed to be a member of the Dumbledore family at the end of Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald. The phoenix that follows Credence in Fantastic Beasts 3 doesn’t have a name, but it could be Fawkes, Albus’ phoenix of the Harry Potter movies.
Gellert Grindelwald believed that the Dumbledores could call on a phoenix whenever they desperately needed its help. After the phoenix chick exploded into an adult in The Crimes of Grindelwald, the magical creature stuck to Credence, following him wherever he went. The presence of the phoenix is how Dumbledore realized that Credence was, in fact, a member of his family. Basically, Credence was the son of Aberforth Dumbledore, Albus’ brother. Considering that phoenixes can die and rise from the ashes multiple times, many have speculated that Credence’s phoenix is none other than Fawkes, the faithful phoenix who stood by Albus Dumbledore’s side throughout the eight Harry Potter movies; Fawkes also came to Harry when he needed help in the Chamber of Secrets.
True, the phoenix has a close connection to Credence and the fact that the magical creature does not receive an official name in Dumbledore’s secrets suggests he might actually be Fawkes. It’s possible that Dumbledore took the phoenix after Credence’s eventual death (at some point after the events of the third film). It also makes sense for the bird to remain in the Dumbledore family given his loyalty. However, based on the story and Harry’s own travels through the Pensieve, it seems that Fawkes didn’t belong to anyone before Dumbledore throughout his long life. It is likely that Fawkes only came into Dumbledore’s life after the events of Fantastic Beasts 3. Moreover, the book Fantastic Beasts: Dumbledore’s Secrets: The Magic of the Movie confirms that Fawkes is not Credence’s phoenix at all.
The phoenix not being Fawkes isn’t explicitly made clear in the movies, though, and that could be the potential Fantastic Beasts 4 will reconstruct the story. After all, Dumbledore’s secrets recreated several things from the previous two films in the franchise – including Dumbledore’s backstory – and the Harry Potter chronology. That said, Credence’s Phoenix looks different. Fawkes had stunning red and orange feathers, while the phoenix of Dumbledore’s secrets is a little darker. However, Credence’s phoenix emits a yellow glow when it takes flight at night. The reason some have speculated that the phoenix was Fawkes is probably because the poster for Fantastic Beasts 3 included an image of the flying phoenix, its body awash in red and gold flame.
Credence’s phoenix played a central role in Fantastic Beasts: Dumbledore’s Secrets. The magical creature alerted Dumbledore to the fact that young Aurelius was dying, with the phoenix sprinkling ashes on him on occasion. The phoenix has an innate sense of danger and always swears to protect the Dumbledores. If nothing else, the phoenix in Fantastic Beasts: Dumbledore’s Secrets confirmed that Credence was a family member and signaled to the elder Dumbledore that he needed help and a home.
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