It’s revealed Johnny Depp allegedly tried to get former Warner Bros. CEO Kevin Tsujihara to fire ex-wife Amber Heard from DC Films’ Aquaman. Released in December 2018, Aquaman co-stars Heard in the role of Mera, the princess of Xebel, one of the underwater kingdoms. Heard also appeared in Zack Snyder’s Justice League, where she made her debut as Mera, prior to co-starring in James Wan’s Aquaman alongside Jason Momoa. Heard was first cast in the role of Mera in early 2016.
Later in 2016, Heard’s ex-husband Depp was cast in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the first of five planned prequel movies set in the world of Harry Potter. It was later revealed Depp would play Gellert Grindelwald, a Dark Wizard who rose to power and would become the Voldemort of the Fantastic Beasts franchise. Depp’s casting in Fantastic Beasts was controversial from the start, as troubling details had previously surfaced during his and Heard’s divorce, including the fact that she was granted a restraining order against him. Those critical of the actor’s involvement in the Harry Potter spinoff franchise were vocal enough that author and Fantastic Beasts screenwriter J.K. Rowling responded to the Depp controversy, stating she entirely supports his casting. Most recently, another detail about Depp and his actions with regard to Heard has come to light.
Now, THR is reporting that depositions relating to Depp’s lawsuit against his former lawyer, Jake Bloom, lead to a group of potential witnesses that includes Heard and former Warner Bros. CEO Tsujihara. With regard to Tsujihara specifically, THR reports he may be called to testify about whether he helped “black-list” Heard at Warner Bros. Further, Depp allegedly attempted to get Tsujihara to remove Heard from Aquaman and prevent her from being hired on other Warner Bros. projects.
Heard did end up starring in Wan’s DC Comics movie, and Aquaman ultimately grossed over $1 billion at the worldwide box office, becoming a massive success for Warner Bros. It has not yet officially been revealed whether Heard will return for the already slated Aquaman 2, set to release in 2022. However, it would be odd for Heard not to reprise her role as Mera after she was a co-star in the first film. And considering most superhero movie franchises sign actors to contracts that span multiple movies, it’s likely she’s contracted for the Aquaman sequel.
As for Heard’s ex-husband, the latest reports indicate Warner Bros. is worried the controversy surrounding Depp may hurt Fantastic Beasts 3. The third film in the Harry Potter prequel series has already been pushed back. Although the movie doesn’t have an official release date, filming on Fantastic Beasts 3 was delayed, as announced in January. Reportedly, the Fantastic Beasts 3 delay was so that screenwriter Rowling and director David Yates could have more time to prep the film and make sure they’re ready to start production.
It remains to be seen what becomes of Fantastic Beasts 3 and whether Depp continues to be involved. Neither Warner Bros. nor the creative team involved with the Fantastic Beasts movies have been anything but supportive of the actor. It’s unclear if that will change due to the latest allegation that Depp tried to get Heard fired from Aquaman. It may be the case that those who supported Depp before will continue to do so. Meanwhile, those who have been calling for Depp to be removed from Fantastic Beasts will likely maintain their stance with this latest revelation about his alleged attempted meddling with Heard’s Aquaman role.
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