The trial of the decade, as some media outlets called it, in which Johnny Depp sued his ex-wife Amber Heard for defamation after she accused him of domestic violence, reached its verdict earlier this week. The jury found Heard guilty of defamation and Depp won the case on three counts, which resulted in that Heard must Depp $15 million in damages combined. Of course, there’s still a question of how will this trial infect their careers in the future.
Johnny Depp lost his jobs at Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, and WB’s Fantastic Beasts. Mads Mikkelsen replaced Depp in the latest Fantastic Beasts installment, and Disney is currently developing two Pirates movies without Depp. The petition to rehire Depp in Pirates of the Caribbean counts more than 800K signatures, but even if Disney would be willing to rehire him, Depp said during the trial he doesn’t want to work with Disney again. Despite Depp’s words, some fans are still hoping to see him as Jack Sparrow again, and now, one of Disney’s former executives, who remained anonymous, offered their prediction.
“I absolutely believe post-verdict that Pirates is primed for rebooting with Johnny as Capt. Jack back on board. There is just too much potential box-office treasure for a beloved character deeply embedded in the Disney culture. With [producer] Jerry Bruckheimer riding high on the massive success of Tom Cruise in Top Gun: Maverick, there is huge appetite for bringing back bankable Hollywood stars in massively popular franchises.” — Disney’s anonymous former executive for People
Johnny Depp said on the witness stand that he believes that Disney fired him because they wanted to protect their reputation, even though they fired him before he had a right to say anything in his defense. In other words, Disney fired him over an article that Heard published in The Washington Post, without any proof that those allegations were true, which is what led to this whole trial that Depp now won. So, did Disney make a hasty move?
Depp said he wouldn’t work for Disney now even if they offered him $300 million to return, but the mentioned former executive doesn’t buy it.
“I don’t believe that based on his money troubles, especially given Pirates is a billion-dollar global franchise.” — Disney’s anonymous former executive for People
So, the situation is as follows: Johnny Depp is currently out of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, and fans want him back, but regardless of winning this trial, Depp apparently feels betrayed by Disney, and even if Disney would drop on their knees to ask him to return, Depp would probably say: “You didn’t want me then, now I don’t want you!”
Disney didn’t make any official statements, but we remember how it was with James Gunn and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3, so we could say that history learns us to never say never. Producer Jerry Bruckheimer recently revealed that there are two scripts for future Pirates of the Caribbean movies. One of them is set to star Margot Robbie. Bruckheimer said there are no plans to bring back Depp “at the moment”.
One thing we can all agree on, Pirates of the Caribbean aren’t really Pirates of the Caribbean without Johnny Depp as Jack Sparrow. Savvy?