- Mikkelsen said he “would’ve loved to have talked” to Depp.
- “I don’t know what happened [in his private life],” he told The Sunday Times.
- He said his Gellert Grindelwald portrayal will be different to Depp’s.
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If it were up to Mads Mikkelsen, he would have talked to Johnny Depp before taking over his role in the next “Fantastic Beasts” movie.
The “Hannibal” star was cast in the role of Gellert Grindelwald after Depp was asked to resign in November 2020 by Warner Bros. following his unsuccessful libel suit against publishers of the UK newspaper The Sun, which referred to him as a “wife-beater” in relation to his marriage with actress Amber Heard.
“Obviously, they were going to do the film, and obviously he was not involved any more,” Mikkelsen told The Sunday Times recently. “But I didn’t have a dog in that fight. And I don’t know what happened [in his private life], and I don’t know if it was fair, him losing the job, but I just knew that the show was going on.”
“I would’ve loved to have talked to him about it if I had the chance,” Mikkelsen continued, “but I just don’t know him in that sense.”
In the first two “Beasts” movies – 2016’s “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” and 2018’s “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” – Depp played the role of the dark wizard.
The same month Depp was asked to exit the role, Mikkelsen was announced as his replacement.
“They called me and they were obviously in a hurry, and I loved the script and so said yes,” Mikkelsen recalled. “And I know it was controversial for many people, but that’s just the way it plays out once in a while.”
Mikkelsen, who is currently shooting the next “Indiana Jones” movie, said he plans to bring a different feel to the Grindelwald character than Depp did.
“I didn’t want to copy what Johnny had done,” he said. “I think he’s a masterful actor, so copying him would’ve been creative suicide. I had to figure out something that was definitely my own, and yet also act as a bridge to what he had done.”
The yet-to-be-titled third “Fantastic Beasts” movie will be out in the summer of 2022.
The movies are based on the book by “Harry Potter” author J.K. Rowling and are set seventy years before the events that take place in the Potter stories.