As #MeToo and #TimesUp continues to sweep through Hollywood, one actor who has so far been largely spared is Johnny Depp. Despite allegations by Amber Heard of domestic abuse and assault, Depp has continued to notch high profile roles, including in Kenneth Branagh‘s hit, “Murder On The Orient Express,” and the upcoming “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald.” The latter in particular has raised many eyebrows and criticisms, which some calls to recast the role, but Depp has been vigorously defended by director David Yates and author J.K. Rowling.
Now, “Harry Potter” franchise star Daniel Radcliffe has waded into the controversy, and he sympathizes with those who are concerned about Depp’s casting. Speaking with EW, who admits he wants to be supportive of the franchise and its producers, but understands why some fans are concerned.
“I can see why people are frustrated with the response that they were given from that … I’m not saying anything that anybody hasn’t already said — and this is a weird analogy to draw — [but] in the NFL, there are lots of players arrested for smoking weed and there is other people’s behavior that goes way beyond that and it’s tolerated because they’re very famous players,” Radcliffe explained. “I suppose the thing I was struck by was, we did have a guy who was reprimanded for weed on the [original ‘Potter’] film, essentially, so obviously what Johnny has been accused of is much greater than that.”
Radcliffe is referring to Jamie Waylett, who played Vincent Crabbe in six “Harry Potter” films, before was dropped after being arrested for growing marijuana in 2009. Heard and Depp reached a settlement in their domestic violence case in 2016, and released a statement which in part read, “Neither party has made false accusations for financial gains.”
“Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald” opens on November 16th.