During the mausoleum scene Leta reveals the Lestrange family tree whilst recounting the events of what happened to Corvus. I had the impression that as the family tree was growing it was developing into its current form and that is why the Corvus node withered at the end rather than straight away. However, on a recent answer of mine a user commented that they thought that Leta had actually withered the tree.

Looking into The Official Screenplay we have very little information unfortunately.



LETA: Corvus Lestrange is already dead. I killed him.

LETA raises her wand.

LETA: Accio!

A heavy box, hidden in the corner of the mausoleum, comes crashing to her through the dust. A series of clicks as cogs whirr... Puzzle-like, it falls apart.

LETA: My father owned a very strange family tree. It only recorded the men...

We glimpse a tree with an orchid-like flower twisting around it.

LETA: ...the women in my family were recorded as flowers. Beautiful. Separate.



...the drowning baby falling through sea-green light, hanging in the air in the mausoleum. LETA has conjured it. It has haunted her all her life and now she shows it to them.

The orchid representing LETA on the Lestrange family tree twists around the branch labeled CORVUS LESTRANGE until the leaves wither and die.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald - The Original Screenplay

Now it could just be very convenient timing that the story ended when it did in time to show the Corvus node withering or Leta could have done it. What caused the Corvus node on the family tree to wither and die?

Whilst this may or may not be answered in the upcoming films (depends on Credence really), I am mainly looking for information we have now. For example, it's been a while since I've seen the film, maybe something was shown more explicit in it to what happened and I can't remember. There could also be interviews and tweets on this to look into.

  • 2
    Because he's dead, presumably
    – Valorum
    Jan 8, 2019 at 12:17

2 Answers 2


The Lestrange tree likely withered by itself.

It seems very likely that Corvus Jr.’s branch on the Lestrange family tree withered as part of the magic in the tree, since Leta went to the French Ministry to get it so she could hide evidence about Corvus’s death.

ANGLE ON LETA in the doorway.

She walks inside, desperate. This is her last chance to hide evidence about Corvus’s death. The doors close behind her. She raises her wand.


The shelves begin to move.
- Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (The Original Screenplay)

For the Lestrange family tree to be evidence that Corvus Jr. was dead because of Leta, it’d have to show his death by itself. Leta couldn’t have needed to wither it herself, because then she’d have no need to hide it to hide the evidence of Corvus Jr. dying because of her.


As a magic book, it may recreate itself everytime it is opened by a Lestrange family member. The orchid flower twists around Corvus causing the branch to wither, meaning her crime. Leta may have wanted to destroy the evidence by a spell to burn (speculative) the complete Corvus IV branch, yet she didn't have the chance.

  • So you're agreeing with the OP's first impression that the tree was showing a progression to the present state as opposed to there being an immediate cause of it?
    – DavidW
    Nov 10, 2019 at 3:57
  • Yes basically, remember the magic clock Mrs. Weasley has in her kitchen about the whereabouts of all her family? Something alike could be in the techs of the Lestrange family tree. (Sorry the lingo I'm a designer.) Nov 10, 2019 at 18:22

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.