Now, it looks like Warner Bros. may have found Depp’s replacement and fans have a lot of thoughts about it.
In a lengthy statement posted on Nov. 6, Depp confirmed that he will not appear as Grindelwald in the upcoming Fantastic Beasts 3 or any future franchise film.
“In light of recent events, I would like to make the following short statement,” he said. “Firstly, I’d like to thank everybody who has gifted me with their support and loyalty. I have been humbled and moved by your many messages of love and concern, particularly over the last few days. Secondly, I wish to let you know that I have been asked to resign by Warner Bros. from my role as Grindelwald in Fantastic Beasts and I have respected and agreed to that request.”
The news arrived just days after Depp lost a libel case against the U.K.-based tabloid The Sun over a 2018 article alleging he was a “wife beater.” In his statement, Depp confirmed that he plans to appeal the ruling.
“Finally, I wish to say this,” he continued. “The surreal judgment of the court in the U.K. will not change my fight to tell the truth and I confirm that I plan to appeal. My resolve remains strong and I intend to prove that the allegations against me are false. My life and career will not be defined by this moment in time.”
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Warner Bros. also confirmed Depp’s departure last Friday in a separate statement.
“Johnny Depp will depart the Fantastic Beasts franchise. We thank Johnny for his work on the films to date,” the studio said. “Fantastic Beasts 3 is currently in production, and the role of Gellert Grindelwald will be recast. The film will debut in theaters worldwide in the summer of 2022.”
Now, according to Variety, Mads Mikkelsen is reportedly “in early talks” to replace Depp in the upcoming film. Warner Bros. is trying to recast the role as soon as possible so the project can stay on schedule.
The plot for Fantastic Beasts 3 is anticipated to focus on the complex relationship between Grindelwald and Jude Law’s Dumbledore. However, it’s unknown how the casting changes will impact the film’s overall plot. For now, Fantastic Beasts 3 is slated to be released in the summer of 2022 after its November 12, 2021 release date was delayed.
Naturally, fans of the Harry Potter spinoff franchise and supporters of Depp have a lot of reactions to his exit and reported recasting. For most, while they do think Mikkelsen will be a great Grindelwald, they believe Depp shouldn’t have been let go in the first place.
Now when Johnny Depp is going to be replaced with Mads Mikkelsen (another actor who I love) I totally still don’t care about next fantastic beasts movie.
— Depp’s Kingdom (@Depps_Kingdom) November 11, 2020
I love Mads Mikkelsen. He’s a great versatile actor & good looking, too. But to replace Johnny Depp w/o looking thoroughly on his case, sorry Warner Bros. You failed big time, I’ll pass on Fantastic Beasts. I’ll support other movies of Mads instead.#justiceforjohnnydepp#mentoo
— 𝕯𝖊𝖇𝖎✠𝕸𝖊𝖓𝖉𝖊𝖟✠𝕭𝖎𝖑𝖆𝖊 (@disintegrating) November 11, 2020
On one hand, Mads Mikkelsen should be in every movie. On the other, I don’t want to sit through any more Fantastic Beasts movies.
— Ross (@mcintyross) November 11, 2020
I love mads Mikkelsen but this is utterly ridiculous. They have to bring Johnny Depp back.
— Connor Buchan (@Wolven_Winter) November 11, 2020
mads mikkelsen in talks to replace johnny depp as grindelwald? in another life, mads would have been an absolutely fantastic choice, but this is wrong. johnny was fired over false allegations, and anyone to accept as his replacement does not have my support. #JusticeForJohnnyDepp
— 𝐚𝐝𝐞𝐥𝐞 🥀 || #JusticeForJohnnyDepp (@sIeepyhoII0w) November 10, 2020
Mads Mikkelsen is a great actor no doubt. But WB has done Johnny Depp so dirty, that people must not stop demanding justice. It’s just wrong.
— KeepRocking (@truthhurts06) November 11, 2020
I hope Mads Mikkelsen turns down the role of Grindelwald in solidarity with Johnny Depp. WB trying to get another fans favourite actor to brush away their unfair treatment of Depp. Fuck WB
— Iny loves Cas as much as he loves Dean (@Inetux) November 11, 2020
No offence to Mads Mikkelsen, he was great in Hannibal, but I will #BoycottFantasticBeasts still, because @wbpictures really done Johnny Depp dirty by firing him and keeping his abuser #JusticeForJohnnyDepp
— mortiᚲian (@mortivian) November 11, 2020
Do you think Johnny Depp should’ve been let go from the Fantastic Beasts franchise? Do you want to see Mads Mikkelsen as Grindelwald? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.