Johnny Depp talks 'Hollywood's boycott of me' in first interview since losing British libel suit
- In a recent interview, Johnny Depp suggested there's a Hollywood boycott against him.
- It's the first interview Depp has given since losing a British libel suit against The Sun tabloid in 2020.
- Depp referred to a “surreal five years” around the case and the acrimonious end to his marriage with Amber Heard.
Johnny Depp said he's being boycotted by Hollywood in his first interview since losing his high-profile libel suit against Britain's The Sun tabloid newspaper in 2020.
Depp, 58, spoke in often incomplete responses — described as "riddles" and "broken sentences" — during an interview for Britain's The Sunday Times (part of the same Rupert Murdoch-owned publishing group as The Sun).
It comes nine months after a British High Court judge in Nov. 2020 said The Sun's description of Depp as a "wife beater" from an April 2018 article was "substantially true." Depp has lost subsequent legal efforts to appeal the verdict.
With another legal battle arriving in April 2022 — a $50 million U.S. defamation lawsuit against ex-wife Amber Heard stemming from a Washington Post opinion piece on domestic abuse — Depp's people told The Times "he could not talk about the court case given the looming U.S. trial," the article states.
But the "Pirates of the Caribbean" star alluded to the "surreal five years" surrounding the case and spoke about the film industry fall-out on his once-formidable career.
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In the wake of the trial, Depp was replaced by Mads Mikkelsen as dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald in the "Fantastic Beasts" franchise. And his new film, "Minamata," focusing on Life photographer W. Eugene Smith's uncovering of mercury poisoning of Japanese villagers in the early 1970s, will not be released in the U.S. by MGM.
"This affects those in Minamata and people who experience similar things. And for anything…" Depp said in halting language. "For Hollywood’s boycott of, erm, me? One man, one actor in an unpleasant and messy situation, over the last number of years?"
"But, you know, I’m moving towards where I need to go to make all that…" Depp said before trailing off, adding, "To bring things to light."
Speaking of the circus-like showbiz trial's aftermath, Depp referred obliquely to the "absurdity of media mathematics."
"Whatever I’ve gone through, I’ve gone through. But, ultimately, this particular arena of my life has been so absurd," he said.
"What the people in Minamata dealt with? People who suffered with COVID? A lot of people lost (their) lives," Depp said. "But what I’ve been through? That’s like getting scratched by a kitten. Comparatively."
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Depp said he has felt support from his fan base who have "stayed on the ride with me."
"They have always been my employers," Depp said. "I’m proud of these people, because of what they are trying to say, which is the truth. The truth they’re trying to get out since it doesn’t in more mainstream publications. It’s a long road that sometimes gets clunky. Sometimes just plain stupid."
Depp added he has no plans of stopping filmmaking even in the current environment.
"Actually, I look forward to the next few films I make to be my first films, in a way. Because once you’ve … Well, look," he says, again seemingly speaking in riddles. "The way they wrote it in The Wizard of Oz is that when you see behind the curtain, it’s not him. When you see behind the curtain, there’s a whole lot of (expletive) squished into one spot. All praying that you don’t look at them. And notice them."
The actor is set to receive a lifetime achievement award in late September at Spain's San Sebastian International Film Festival. However, the announcement was met with backlash from Spain's leading group of women filmmakers, condemning the festival's decision.
Depp's first interview also comes after Heard, 35, announced she had welcomed a baby girl, Oonagh Paige, via a surrogate on April 8. The actress is set to reprise her role as Mera in the "Aquaman" sequel "Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom," due for release in 2022.
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