In a new interview with The Sunday Times, actor Johnny Depp has reflected on the “surreal five years” he’s just been through and the feeling of being “boycotted by Hollywood”.
The interview is Depp’s first conversation with the press since he lost a libel suit last November to The Sun on the terminology used in its reporting about Depp and his ex-wife Amber Heard’s very public divorce proceedings.
Following the ruling, 58-year-old Depp resigned from Warner Brothers’ “Fantastic Beasts” series, while MGM effectively shelved the U.S. release of his recent drama “Minamata” with no new date scheduled. Depp addressed his standing in the film industry, saying:
“Some films touch people 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? But, you know, I’m moving towards where I need to go to make all that… To bring things to light.”
“Minamata,” which is getting a UK release, sees Depp playing a photojournalist who helped expose the effects of mercury poisoning on Japanese communities in the 1970s. Of the villagers portrayed in his film, Depp says:
“We 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.”
Depp has consistently denied he abused Heard and both parties currently have lawsuits in the courts against each other.