Johnny Depp isn’t a guy anyone would trade places with right now. It’s just been a horrendous run for the actor over the last few months, culminating in a continued string of bad news over the last few weeks specifically. He’s taken major hits to his public persona, reputation, acting career, and financial stability moving forward. But that latter part might have a bit of “good news” coming down the pike with recent reports he’ll at least recoup some money for his role in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them 3.
His lawsuit against the British tabloid The Sun went completely off the rails over the summer. What started with Johnny Depp trying to find retribution for allegations the paper made about him being a “wife-beater” turned into basically a trial and referendum on Depp actually being, well, a wife-beater. That’s what the court decided when they felt The Sun, and their defense team provided ample evidence that Depp engaged in a number of disturbing (borderline horrific) behaviors toward now ex-wife Amber Heard.
When the case was settled and Johnny Depp lost, the dominoes of his Hollywood career didn’t take long to start tumbling. First, he was let go of his duties of Captain Jack Sparrow in the Warner Bros. reboot of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise. Considering Depp was merely going to offer a bit part or cameo in the production as they set to bring along a new group of characters, this ouster didn’t amount to all that big of a deal.
The bigger news came right on the heels of that with another Warner Bros. production, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them 3 announcing that Johnny Depp would no longer play the part of Gellert Grindelwald, the franchise’s primary antagonist. Considering this movie is well into franchise mode and Johnny Depp likely had a few more movies at least in him, it represented a massive blow for the actor.
Apparently, not all is lost financially for Johnny Depp in this situation. Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them 3 was already in production and had started filming earlier in the fall. Sure, this makes recasting a major character all that much harder, a problem they will have to deal with going forward. But Depp was able to film one scene already and for his troubles, the studio is going to reportedly ship him at least $10 million dollars. His contract had been structured in such a way that he hammers a check no matter what the studio decides to do with the film or the character.
Johnny Depp is likely going to need the money. He’s currently set to go to trial in a $50 million dollar lawsuit against The Washington Post for allegations they made against the actor. And then there’s a chance he retries the case against The Sun. That’s because Warner Bros. has said they would consider letting him back on the lot if he goes back to court and proves, this time around, that the allegations are false.
In all, the trials and tribulations of Johnny Depp have been a media mess for months now and the news isn’t likely to die down anytime soon. There are other lawsuits coming and recastings imminent. But he will have eight figures worth of cash about to hit the bank account. I guess that’s good news?