Will Johnny Depp reclaim his throne in the “Fantastic Beasts” franchise of Mads Mikkelsen?
Gellert Grindelwald was one of the roles Depp had to give up after a UK court labeled him a wife beater as a result of his legal battle with The Sun. With his unexpected departure, Warner Bros. immediately sought a replacement and announced Mikkelsen as the new cast member.
Mikkelsen spoke out about Depp’s possible return after the third installment, “Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore,” aired.
On Monday, the 56-year-old “Valhalla Rising” actor attended the Sarajevo Film Festival to receive the Honorary Heart of Sarajevo Award.
In an interview with Deadline, the actor discussed his thoughts on replacing Depp and why he expected the original actor to return.
“It was very intimidating. Obviously, now the course has changed—he won the suit, the court [case]—so let’s see if he comes back. He might,” he said. “I’m a big fan of Johnny. I think he’s an amazing actor, I think he did a fantastic job. Having said that, there was no way I could just copy it because it’s so much him. It would be creative suicide.”
Depp reportedly built a bridge between himself and the character he once played in order to act the way the character has always done.
Mikkelsen also praised Depp’s fans for being sweet and tenacious. He reportedly understood why the supporters were broken after the actor lost his role after witnessing the legal battle.
Depp surprised his fans with a heartfelt letter thanking them for their support since the beginning of “Fantastic Beasts 3.”
Depp also took his time in revealing the heartbreaking news, stating that his role as Gellert Grindelwald is no longer viable.
He understood Warner Bros.’ decision and agreed to withdraw from the role due to the issues he had been dealing with for months.
“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,” Depp wrote.
In a separate statement, Warner Bros. confirmed the news, stating that they needed to let go of Depp.
The studio’s official announcement that Grindelwald’s role would be recast was published by IndieWire. Mikkelsen was eventually hired by the company.