Unknown Artist Behind Fantastic Beasts Song Speaks Out


Emmi, the singer who performed the song heard in the speakeasy in Fantastic Beasts, discusses how that happened. Also, more on Bruce Springsteen’s Harry Potter tribute.

In the back half of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, Newt Scamander and company walk into a speakeasy called The Blind Pig, and we’re treated to a sultry, jazzy number about hippogriffs and phoenixes and so forth.

It ends up that this song, called “Blind Pig,” was performed by a Devon-born singer and songwriter named Emmi, who spoke to MuggleNet about how it came about. (Emmi also did motion capture work for the movie.) Emmi got an email from director David Yates when she was visiting her parent’s house for the holidays. Only she didn’t know it was Yates at the time, presumably because the production didn’t want to risk anyone getting wind of the fact that there was a new Harry Potter movie in the works.

"I have two weeks with my family ever year, and I got this email from someone I didn’t know saying, ‘Do you mind singing this? Here are some lyrics; give it a try.’ I was like, ‘Well, this is a difficult time for me. I’m on holiday with my parents, and we’re about to eat pizza. Can we put this off?’And they were like, ‘Probably not. You should probably give this a go.’"

Give it a go she did, recording a demo version in her childhood bedroom, and several other versions after that, after the producers started making requests. As someone familiar with the books, Emmi recognized words like “hippogriff” as being from the Harry Potter universe, but still didn’t have confirmation of what she was doing for a long while. “It wasn’t until April of this year that I got a call saying, ‘We’ll be using your voice in a film. Is that cool?’”

"I’m not sure if it’s [J.K. Rowling’s] first song or not, but it’s amazing to come so close to embodying something that came from her brain. Does that make me smarter by osmosis?"

Harry Potter readers will know that it’s not Rowling’s first song—snatches of lyrics from other songs appear throughout the books. In any case, hopefully her role in the movie will earn Emmi and her unique voice some attention.

Emmi Green attends the European premiere of ‘Fantastic Beasts And Where To Find Them’ in London. (Photo by Jeff Spicer/Getty Images)

Also in music news, did you know that Bruce Springsteen sent the production a Harry Potter-themed song he’d written, hoping it would be included in one of the early movies? Well, he did, although it didn’t end up on screen. Producer David Heyman talked about that strange experience:

"It [was hard to turn Springsteen down]. Chris [Columbus, director of the first two Harry Potter films] labored over it and then wrote a 12-page letter explaining and apologizing for not including it, because it was completely unsolicited. He just delivered this song. We didn’t go to Bruce first; he just delivered it. But it just didn’t feel right to have a song."

Knowing the kind of music the early films used, I can’t imagine how a Springsteen-penned song would fit in. Although I’m very curious to hear what it sounded like.

Next: Dan Fogler (Jacob) will return for Fantastic Beasts sequel

h/t MuggleNet