Last year, Johnny Depp lost his libel case against a British newspaper regarding a piece that had branded him a "wife-beater." The High Court Judge ruled that the piece was "substantially true," and therefore the paper was not in the wrong. Depp lost millions of dollars in the trial - and the damage to his reputation may have been even more costly. Since the verdict, he's lost out on many film roles and lucrative endorsement deals. Now, the star has spoken out.
Speaking to The Sunday Times this week, Depp opened up about the tumultuous past year of his life. "And for anything... for Hollywood's boycott of me? One man, one actor in an unpleasant and messy situation, over the last number of years?" he said.
Depp's newest role is as real-life photographer W Eugene Smith in an upcoming MGM movie, Minimata. But the release of the movie has been marred with controversy following Depp's legal troubles. The movie has been released in all other countries but is yet to hit the screens in the US.
Director Andrew Lewis has since accused MGM of "burying" the movie in an open letter to the studio. Lewis believes "the personal issues of an actor in the film could reflect negatively upon them," but he believes MGM has a "moral obligation" to release the movie.
Minimata follows the story of a mercury poisoning scandal in Japan. Lewis has said MGM must explain "why you think an actor's personal life is more important than their dead children." Depp has echoed the sentiment, saying: "We looked these people in the eyeballs and promised we would not be exploitative. That the film would be respectful. I believe that we've kept our end of the bargain, but those who came in later should also maintain theirs. Some films touch people. And this affects those in Minamata and people who experience similar things."
MGM has confirmed they are still planning to release Minimata in the USA but has yet to confirm the release date.
It's worth noting that although Depp lost his libel case, no criminal charges of domestic abuse have been brought against him, Many fans of Depp have spoken out following the controversy.
"He doesn't deserve this but I'm not surprised. Hollywood is like any other corporation, if you're making them easy money, they'll support you. Otherwise, retire. Good luck Johnny," wrote one Facebook fan. Another added: "He is a wonderful actor, a man who goes to hospitals to cheer up children just for the love of them. We all have a private life it is a shame that fame makes it public. I will continue to admire him and watch his films, he should not have to leave films that he is currently in as he is a big part of the film, shame on the producers."
However, others are feeling a little less sympathetic. One commenter wrote: "He was warned by his lawyers not to start the action which has led to this. Brought it upon himself!"
What do you make of the situation?