Johnny Depp says Hollywood is boycotting him in first interview since losing libel suit
Speaking to The Sunday Times, the actor said he's had a "surreal five years" since being accused of abuse by Amber Heard. Depp has denied Heard's accusations and has filed a $50 million defamation suit against her stemming from her 2018 Washington Post op-ed about domestic abuse. The case is scheduled to go to trial next April.
Depp is also seeking to overturn the ruling in his libel case after a judge ruled in November that a 2018 article in the British tabloid The Sun depicting him as a "wife-beater" was "substantially true."
The actor can't legally speak about the case or his relationship with Heard, but he did connect what he's going through with the events covered in his new movie Minamata. In the film, Depp plays real-life photographer W. Eugene Smith, who documented the mercury poisoning of Japanese villagers in the early 1970s. He told the Times that his own struggles are "like getting scratched by a kitten" compared to those poisoning victims, or "people who suffered with COVID."
However, he seemed to imply that the film is not getting the attention it deserves due to his own personal troubles. Minimata premiered Friday in the U.K. and Ireland, but its U.S. release has yet to be announced. Depp was also forced to depart the Fantastic Beasts franchise after losing his libel case.
Depp said he "looked those people in the eyeballs and promised we would not be exploitative. That the film would be respectful. I believe that we've kept our end of the bargain, but those who came in later should also maintain theirs."
"Some films touch people," the actor continued. "And this affects those in Minamata and people who experience similar things. And for anything ... for Hollywood's boycott of me? One man, one actor in an unpleasant and messy situation, over the last number of years?"
He then noted that he is "moving towards where I need to go to make all that … to bring things to light."
In the interview, Depp also called his fall from grace an "absurdity of media mathematics."
"Whatever I've gone through, I've gone through," he continued. "But, ultimately, this particular arena of my life has been so absurd..."
Depp hasn't lost all of his supporters, it appears. The San Sebastian Film Festival in Spain announced this week it would honor Depp with a lifetime award, while the Karlovy Vary International Film Festival in the Czech Republic also said it would celebrate the Pirates of the Caribbean star.
The actor also expressed gratitude to his loyal fans.
"They have always been my employers. They are all our employers. They buy tickets, merchandise. They made all of those studios rich, but they forgot that a long time ago. I certainly haven't," 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. But they stayed on the ride with me and it's for them I will fight. Always, to the end. Whatever it may be."