Johnny Depp fans are getting no respite it seems.
After weeks spent lobbying to get actress Amber Heard, Depp’s ex-wife, removed from ‘Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom’, producer Peter Safran explained why online efforts to get her removed from the superhero sequel were dismissed by the film’s creative team.
“I don’t think we’re ever going to react to, honestly, pure fan pressure,” Safran told Deadline‘s Hero Nation podcast. “You gotta do what’s best for the movie. We felt that if it’s [director] James Wan and [star] Jason Momoa, it should be Amber Heard. That’s really what it was.”
“One is not unaware of what is going on in the Twitter-verse, but that doesn’t mean you have to react to it or take it as gospel or accede to their wishes,” Safran went on. “You have to do what’s right for the film, and that’s really where we landed on it.”
The actress, who plays the character Mera, and Depp had earlier been involved in a vicious legal battle in the UK where their dysfunctional and sometimes violent relationship was laid bare. Depp had sought to sue The Sun newspaper over a 2018 article that described him as a “wife-beater”, but he lost the case and was refused a chance to appeal the verdict. An audio recording was also introduced at the libel trial in which Heard admitted “hitting” Depp.
After the trial verdict, Warner Bros. let Depp go from the upcoming ‘Fantastic Beasts’ sequel, with actor Mads Mikkelsen taking over the role of Gellert Grindelwald. The recasting seemed also spurred on Depp supporters who insisted that Heard likewise get ousted from the upcoming ‘Aquaman’ sequel.
“Amber Heard is still in Aquaman 2 when she physically and mentally abused her husband And it’s on tape??? I’ll pass,” one person tweeted, when director Wan announced that ‘Aquaman 2’ was about to start filming in late June.
“Hey, @warnerbros, read the room. Congratulations on ruining Aquaman2, it’s exactly what you deserve. People aren’t stupid. We’ve heard Amber Heard admit to chronically abusing Johnny Depp,” another said.
‘Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom’ will also star Jason Momoa in the titular role, Patrick Wilson, Dolph Lundgren and Yahya Abdul-Mateen II. The DC superhero movie is expected to release in December 2022.