(LOS ANGELES) — Last year, following the controversial casting of Johnny Depp in the upcoming film Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling issued a statement defending the actor. Now Depp himself is speaking out about Rowling’s support in the wake of domestic violence allegations against him by his ex-wife, Amber Heard.
Speaking with Entertainment Weekly, Depp says, “The fact remains I was falsely accused, which I why I’m suing the Sun newspaper for defamation for repeating false accusations. J.K. has seen the evidence and therefore knows I was falsely accused, and that’s why she has publicly supported me.”
“She doesn’t take things lightly,” Depp adds. “She would not stand up if she didn’t know the truth.”
Last December, Rowling said in her statement, “Based on our understanding of the circumstances, the filmmakers and I are not only comfortable sticking with our original casting, but genuinely happy to have Johnny playing a major character.”
In the movie, Depp’s character, the wizard Gellert Grindelwald, is a former childhood friend of Hogwarts professor Albus Dumbledore. Having been captured in the last movie, he escapes and announces his plans to rule over the muggle population by unifying the wizarding world.
Asked by EW if his character could be compared to Donald Trump, Depp tells the magazine, “I don’t see [the comparisons] at all…[Grindelwald’s] dream is for the wizard world to stand tall and above.”
“It’s a fascistic element” Depp adds. “And there’s nothing more dangerous than somebody who is a dreamer with a specific vision that’s very strong and very dangerous and he can make it happen. But no character wakes up and goes ‘I’m going to do the worst things possible today and be evil as hell.’”
The Crimes of Grindelwald hits theaters November 16.
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