Johnny Depp Is Already Involved In Another Lawsuit

Johnny Depp is facing a lawsuit after being accused of plagiarising lyrics by author Bruce Jackson.

By Mark McKee | Published

Johnny Depp (Pirates of the Caribbean and Fantastic Beasts) is a star that has been on seemingly every newscast and in every conversation in the last year, but not for the reasons that he would have liked. The actor and his ex-wife, Amber Heard, made headlines all summer while they engaged in a defamation lawsuit where Depp accused Heard of slandering his name and causing him to lose his career. While that case has finally come to a close, Johnny Depp didn’t wait very long before he found himself in a new lawsuit; this time, TMZ reports that he being accused by author and folklorist Bruce Jackson of allegedly stealing lyrics stealing lyrics from a toast in one of his books and putting it in one of their songs.

Johnny Depp and his bandmate have filed a lawsuit claiming that Jackson’s accusation is nothing but a good old-fashioned shakedown, further claiming that since the toast, known as “Hobo Ben,” doesn’t have clear origins. They claim Jackson even admitted the person who shared the poem with him confessed it was passed down over time like an old folktale. Since there is no clear owner of the toast, the frequent Tim Burton collaborator alleges that they own it just as much as the next guy. 

johnny depp

Bruce Jackson is a multi-talented American folklorist, documentary filmmaker, writer, and photographer. He is a SUNY Distinguished Professor and the James Agee Professor of American Culture at the University at Buffalo and has edited or authored books published by major university presses.

Jackson’s published works began in 1966 with Folklore and Society and continued for over five decades, with his most recent publication in 2019 with Places: Things Heard, Things Seen. His filmography began with Death Row in 1979 and numbered five productions over nine years, ending with Creely in 1988. 

Johnny Depp’s lawsuit is the third since 2018, with the first brought against News Group Newspapers’ The Sun for libel in response to a piece published that asked how J.K. Rowling could be happy after casting “Wife-beater Johnny Depp in Fantastic Beasts?” Depp lost that suit but then turned his attention on his ex-wife, who began the whole thing when she posted an op-ed that accused him of spousal abuse; the trial took over the media and captured the attention of the entire nation before he was awarded $15 million in damages.

Now, Depp and Beck are seeking damages after Jackson claimed in Rolling Stone that he had been publishing works for over 50 years and never had something he had written so blatantly ripped off. 

While Johnny Depp made a career as a movie star and became one of the largest names in Hollywood, his recent publicity has almost exclusively been in relation to lawsuits and legal battles. While he 1-1 against his ex-wife and her appeal could start the entire thing over again, his newest lawsuit is simply the next step in his career turmoil that is unfolding in the courts and the media.