Ezra Miller Talks Credence’s Struggles
In a new interview with CinemaToday, Ezra Miller talks about his character Credence’s struggles since breaking free from his oppressive adoptive mother in the first Fantastic Beasts film:
I’m really enjoying tracking the changes – following Credence’s trajectory. It’s an interesting thing because certainly in this film he’s broken free of some of the restraints that we saw him in in the first film. So there’s this aspect of repression that’s cast off and he’s trying to learn to work with the power of the entity he possesses. So there’s liberation and there’s the confidence that comes with that, but then there’s also, I think, a massive sense of uncertainty and isolation that comes with casting off everything that’s made up who you are for the first part of your life. And so I think he’s also very confused and is really seeking his identity because everything he was taught, everything that he was raised with, was a lie that hurt him and held him back. So now having cast that off, he doesn’t have much to inform who he is or how he should behave in the world. And so I think it’s liberating but it’s also scary for Credence in this new chapter.
I think that there was a lot that was really really physical in the first film in terms of Credence and his internal experience of the Obscurus and what the dynamic was like when he was unaware that the Obscurus was within him and I think hat in this film you see a new version of that dynamic where now he does know. He’s aware of the power that runs through him and that changes and alters the physicality. So the physicality changes.
It’s interesting. So what we explore a bit is the nature of an Obscurial and an Obscurus and how or when they can truly be killed or hurt. Credence is working with a magical, potentially terminal illness and he has to navigate that so I think it’s an element of time is running out and part of that is the need for him to figure out who he is, what he is and how to work with it otherwise, presumably, he will perish.
Definitely very tangible. It’s present in the script and you can really feel it when you’re working. A lot of the material is working with very complicated ideas, scary premises, but, for me, I kind of existed in the darker shadows of the first film and I think those shadows spread to other parts of the world in this film. But it’s been fairly creepy for me the whole time but now some of the other characters have to reckon with the creepiness.
In a second video, he discusses more of Credence’s motivations and working with Claudia Kim, who plays a Maledictus in the new film:
I think that people who read the Harry Potter books and watched those films know the relationship between Dumbledore and Grindelwald was a very complex one, a very intimate one, a close one – it was a relationship that happened during adolescence and I think we all can identify with how much someone can come to mean to you at that time. Someone who’s your age becomes the closest person to you and the love that exists there and what happened between them was sort of an ideological split wherein their philosophies were aligned and they were very excited about this dangerous, idealistic mentality that they shared. Then at some point their path, their beliefs, started to diverge and we get to explore more about that as this series progresses. It’s a very important relationship for the history of the whole Wizarding World and it’s a beautiful thing that it actually comes front his very intimate root of two people who really, really connect when they’re young and who really love each other and rely on each other, and then who are broken apart, go different ways and actually become both incredibly influential on different sides of the Wizarding World.
I think the relationship between Credence and Graves, who we actually know now to have been Grindelwald throughout their relationship, is a complex one in which they both need and wants things from each other and Credence is really, ultimately, being exploited. In Grindelwald’s mind, he’s just using credence as a means to get to the power he’s seeking. He doesn’t realise that Credence is actually the one who holds that power. But Graves, who’s of course Grindelwald, actually is really taking advantage of Credence’s vulnerability, Credence’s need for love, and to be recognised and to be seen in the power of his differences from the rest of the people in his world and his life. Credence really needs those things. Grindelwald, who’s devious and very cunning when it comes to reading and manipulating people, he perceives all of this about Credence and he uses it.
I can say that working with Claudia Kim was an absolute honour and immense pleasure. She’s one of the greatest scene partners I’ve ever been able to work with. She’s just incredibly talented. Such a killer. And we had a lot of fun creating the relationship between Credence and her character who I can say literally nothing about.
I think it’s complicated because Credence is troubled and confused as to who actually has his best interests at heart. He’s been so betrayed so many different times in so many different ways that I think he has a difficult time trusting anyone’s intent. He doesn’t really know Newt. He knows that Newt was acting like he just wanted to help him, but then again, so was Grindelwald in the guise of Graves. Graves was the same way in promising Credence protection or safety or understanding or care. So I think Credence just has a hard time trusting anyone, really, and that certainly applies to people in the magical world who have hurt him immensely, who tried to kill him. He has no real reason to trust any wizard and, really, has had a terrible run with No-Majes aswel in his life and growing up and the type of puritanical and repressive culture that he was raised in which caused such dysphoria and sickness in him. And having rebelled against that culture, and his truth having exploded outwards and made him an outcast and an exile from that world, he was also then met with hostility and animosity from the Wizarding World. So he doesn’t really mess with anyone. I don’t think he knows that there is a difference between Graves/Grindelwald and Newt. I think he sees them all as untrustworthy people who purely want something from him because otherwise why would they be there, what was their intent to begin with. I think he just distrust everyone.