J.K. Rowling has revealed and confirmed many secrets about Harry Potter’s Wizarding World over the years, including Albus Dumbledore’s sexuality. So, is Dumbledore gay, and what is his relationship with Gellert Grindelwald?
In 1997, Rowling’s first book, Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone introduced readers to the Wizarding World. It was the first in a series of seven books that told the story of “The Boy Who Lived” and Lord Voldemort, the darkest wizard, who had bad plans for both the Wizarding and Muggle worlds.
During the Harry Potter series, not much was known about Dumbledore’s past, and only a few details were given. Luckily for fans, Rowling has spent years giving information about different characters, especially on the official Wizarding World website (formerly known as Pottermore).
Of course, Dumbledore wasn’t left out, and Rowling answered the question, “Is Dumbledore gay?” by saying that he was in a relationship with Gellert Grindelwald, played by Mads Mikkelsen. Here’s when and how it became clear that Albus Dumbledore was gay, as well as what their relationship was like.
When Albus Dumbledore Was Confirmed To Be Gay?
Fans of the Harry Potter books and movies started to think that the beloved Hogwarts Headmaster was gay because of how secret his past was and how close he was to some male characters. In 2007, when Rowling read Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince at Carnegie Hall, she was asked if Dumbledore ever fell in love.
She said that she “always thought of Dumbledore as gay,” and she even said that Dumbledore was in love with Gellert Grindelwald. This relationship added to Dumbledore’s tragedy because the person he loved turned out to be a dangerous man with bad plans for wizards and muggles, and he felt “terribly let down by him.” Rowling even said that in an early draught of the script for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, Dumbledore says that he “knew a girl once,” and she had to write in the margin that Dumbledore is gay to let them know.
Why Wasn’t Dumbledore Confirmed As Gay In Harry Potter Movies Or Books?
Rowling’s answer to “Is Dumbledore gay?” caused a lot of disagreement. Some people liked that a major character in a children’s book series was gay. Still, others questioned Rowling’s decision to confirm fans’ suspicions after the book series ended.
Dumbledore died, leaving no way to explore Dumbledore’s sexuality… unless there was some kind of prequel series. When it was announced that a young Albus Dumbledore would be in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, fans hoped to see that part of Dumbledore’s story on the big screen, which would make it official. However, that hasn’t happened yet, and it might never happen.
Rowling told fans to “watch this space” in 2016 to see if Dumbledore’s sexuality would be explored in the Fantastic Beasts series. But in 2018, the film’s director, David Yates, said that Dumbledore’s sexuality would “not be made clear explicitly.” Rowling’s comments about the Fantastic Beasts 2 DVD/Blu-ray made headlines in 2019 because she kept saying that the relationship between Dumbledore and Grindelwald was real, even though it hasn’t been shown in the books or movies.
But she stressed that their relationship was an “incredibly intense” example of passionate love and that the sexual parts weren’t as interesting to her. Since then, Rowling has said that she doesn’t want to get “uncomfortably explicit” about Dumbledore and Grindelwald’s relationship, but that has led to them not being shown at all.
Did Dumbledore Love Grindelwald? Explains His Backstory!
As mentioned before, Dumbledore’s backstory was a mystery throughout the Harry Potter books and movies, but Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows revealed his former alliance with Grindelwald. Harry learned that Dumbledore was once a wizarding supremacist and was about to start a revolution with Grindelwald.
When he met Aberforth, he also learned about the biggest tragedy in the Dumbledore family. Albus’ alliance with Grindelwald led him to neglect his duties as Ariana’s caretaker, and his mission would have dragged Aberforth and Ariana with him, so Aberforth confronted him.
This made Albus realize what he had been doing and what he was getting himself into. This made Grindelwald angry, so he used the Cruciatus Curse on Aberforth. Then, Albus, Aberforth, and Grindelwald got into a fight, and Ariana was killed by a stray curse during the fight.
Being a wizarding supremacist doesn’t fit at all with the Albus Dumbledore that readers, viewers, Harry, and many other characters in the history of the Wizarding World knew. The fact that he was in love with Grindelwald explains that part of his past and makes his whole story even more tragic.
Did Grindelwald Love Dumbledore Too?
Albus Dumbledore’s life was already sad, but it’s likely that the person he loved didn’t love him back. Gellert Grindelwald was a very smart wizard who was good at many kinds of magic. As a student at the Durmstrang Institute, he learned a lot about the culture of Dark Magic.
He was born with the ability to see the future, and he saw himself taking over the Wizarding World. This led him to study the Deathly Hallows and make plans to take over. Grindelwald was obsessed with his plans and ideas, and he saw Dumbledore as a possible ally. However, Grindelwald’s goal of taking over the world always came first, and he was more interested in power and mastering death than he was in Dumbledore.