Director David Yates Defends Keeping Johnny Depp In ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Sequel

When it was announced in 2016 that Johnny Depp would be a part of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, the news was not met with a lot of excitement. Instead, audiences were unimpressed. Then news broke prior to the movie’s premiere that the actor was going through a divorce from Amber Heard, who accused the actor of being abusive both physically and verbally.

Once the news of Johnny Depp’s divorce, as well as the allegations against him, went public, many fans of the Harry Potter franchise asked to have the actor removed from the series moving forward. However, as Collider reported, while there have been a lot of calls for the role of Gellert Grindelwald to be recast, it seems that the Fantastic Beasts sequel is planning to move forward with Depp, even in light of fan protests.

In a new interview with director David Yates, he defends keeping Johnny Depp in the sequel and why there are no plans to recast the role. Yates did touch on the recent scandals in Hollywood that have brought sexual harassment to the forefront by saying, “honestly there’s an issue at the moment where there’s a lot of people being accused of things, they’re being accused by multiple victims, and it’s compelling and frightening.” However, when it comes to Depp, the director said that there was only a single person who stepped forward to accuse the actor.

David Yates explained that he “can only tell you about the man I see every day,” and he described Depp as a man who is kind and decent. Although Yates acknowledges that there have been accusations made against Johnny Depp, he also said, “whatever accusation was out there doesn’t tally with the kind of human being I’ve been working with.”

In fact, David Yates also pointed to the many women Depp has been in relationships with that have stepped forward to defend him. The director said that he feels like this is a very different set of circumstances because he does not believe Johnny Depp is in the same category as all of the people who have been accused by multiple people over many years. David Yates makes it clear that in his mind, this is a “dead issue” and any talk about recasting the role is simply not up for “analysis.”

Although Yates never really explains why he thinks that Johnny Depp is the perfect choice to play Gellert Grindelwald in the Fantastic Beasts sequel, the director makes it clear that even with the continued backlash, the actor is not going anywhere. This means that when Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald premieres in theaters on November 16, 2018, Depp will be in the thick of the action.

[Featured Image by John Phillips/Getty Images]