It’s been a week filled with brouhaha from Johnny Depp. First, it was reported that the Fantastic Beasts 3 actor had lost his defamation court case with The Sun. Depp himself then broke the news that he had been asked by Warner Bros. to step down from the franchise. The actor’s history has been playing out publicly for years with his ex-wife Amber Heard. So why now?
The history of the former marriage of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard has produced a lot of twists, turns and allegations. One noteworthy point came when Amber Heard wrote in an Op-Ed that ran in the Washington Post about an abusive relationship. It didn’t say her abuser was Depp directly, but he’s sued about that piece in Virginia, a case that came back and forth with some major lawyer.
Then a distinct libel case in which Johnny Depp was a “wife-beater” alleged by The Sun played out publicly. Initially, Johnny Depp filed the suit in an effort to clear his name. Instead, the court case featured both Depp and Heard’s back-and-forth stories. Depp stated, in one infamous instance, that Amber Heard had defecated in their bed. It was the dogs, Heard argued. Some of these narratives have been around for years, yet Johnny Depp was asked to step down from playing Grindelwald only after the verdict came down in favour of The Sun.
According to a report based around Johnny Depp’s leave from Fantastic Beasts, one factor may have severely impacted the recent change in the franchise. You may already know that the behemoth corporation AT&T united with Time Warner (which owns Warner Bros.) last year. A source told the outlet that a no-tolerance policy with regard to the controversy was one of the major changes that came with the merger.
The idea is that the tolerance for controversial stars such as Johnny Depp, a trademark of Hollywood productions, may have worn off with a new team in place, led by new CEO Jason Kilar and studio chief Ann Sarnoff. This is a marked modification. 3 years ago, J.K. Rowling backed and felt comfortable with Depp remaining in the franchise. She reportedly signed off this time around on the decision to let the actor go.