Johnny Depp Will Still Get Paid For “Fantastic Beasts 3”
Johnny Depp recently lost his libel suit against The Sun, which was bad news for Warner Bros., because they were reportedly hoping a judge would rule that you can’t legally call Johnny Depp a “wife beater.” Johnny was set to star in the third Fantastic Beasts movie, and so it’s better for business if their star won his libel suit. When Johnny lost, he announced that Warner Bros. gave him the opportunity to resign, which he took. But don’t shed a single, greasy tear for Johnny Depp. He might be leaving without a job, but he still gets to take home the paycheck.
The Hollywood Reporter says that production on Fantastic Beasts 3 had begun on September 20. A few weeks prior, Johnny had requested his defamation trial against his ex-wife Amber Heard be delayed a bit, so he could work on this latest Fantastic Beasts film. Johnny had already filmed one scene as the evil wizard Gellert Grindelwald, a role he has played in the previous two Fantastic Beasts films. THR reports that on November 5th, the cast and crew were informed that Johnny would not be part of the film anymore, and a new actor would be brought in to play Grindelwald. There’s still no word on who might replace Johnny, but I’m sure Colin Farrell is ready in the event his phone rings.
Once a judge decided that it was a-ok for The Sun to characterize Johnny Depp as a wife beater, Warner Bros. realized that it would be a whole lot easier for other publications to call him a wife beater too, so they got rid of the problem. Now the only box office-based nightmares that Warner Bros. has to deal with, are all the movies being bumped by COVID-19 (Fantastic Beasts 3 is scheduled for release in July 2022).
Johnny will still get his full salary for the film, due to having a pay-or-play contract, which is pretty common for stars of his stature. Basically, it stipulates that Johnny gets paid whether or not the film gets made or his role gets recast. THR points out that Johnny technically resigned, and that he wasn’t officially fired, which might have impacted his paycheck. For example, if Warner Bros. was forced to fire him, maybe he might not get all of his paycheck.
Johnny has claimed in the past that he’s not exactly rich like a pirate anymore, so getting his hands on that Fantastic Beasts 3 check might have been his motivation for resigning, even if he continues to claim he’s innocent. Johnny Depp was the highest-paid actor for the third film, despite sharing equal billing with Jude Law and Eddie Redmayne. They don’t know how much he got, but they say it was eight-figures.
I’m sure someone at Warner Bros. is mad that they still have to pay Johnny Depp several million dollars just for one scene, and a scene that has to be scrapped now. But they were smart to pay him and not get into a legal dispute with him. Because this all comes back to Johnny’s messy marriage, which means that the bed poo is bound to be brought up again. That’s not the kind of press Warner Bros. wants. Warner Bros. has been associated with some real stinkers, but not like that.
Pic: Warner Bros.