Johnny Depp is set to direct a movie for the first time in a quarter of a century.
The actor will return behind the camera for Modigliani, a biographical drama about Italian artist Amedeo Modigliani. Al Pacino is producing the film along with Barry Navidi. IN.2, the European arm of production company Infinitum Nihil, is backing the film.
Based on Dennis McIntyres play of the same name and adapted for screen by Jerzy and Mary Kromolowski, Modigliani takes place in 1916 Paris and tells the story of the Italian-born painter and sculptor Amedeo Modigliani. According to the films release, Modigliani, long considered by himself a critical and commercial failure, navigates a turbulent and eventful 48 hours that will become a turning point in his life, ultimately solidifying his reputation as an artistic legend.
The saga of Mr. Modiglianis life is one that Im incredibly honored, and truly humbled, to bring to the screen, Depp said in a statement. It was a life of great hardship, but eventual triumph — a universally human story all viewers can identify with.
The movie is Depps latest effort to restart his career in the wake of his highly publicized defamation trial against ex-wife Amber Heard. The jury found that Heard had defamed Depp in her 2018 Washington Post opinion piece, which alluded to being a victim of domestic violence. However, the jury also found that Depp defamed Heard, through his attorney, while fighting back against her charges.
Though Hollywood has steered clear of Depp, hes been able to find work with European production companies. Hes also starring as the controversial King Louis XV in French filmmaker Maïwenns upcoming film Jeanne du Barry, a historical romance drama about a royals concubine.
Jeanne du Barry will be Depps first major acting role since the 2020 independent film Minamata, in which he played war photographer W. Eugene Smith. The same year, Depp was forced by Warner Bros. to exit the Harry Potter spinoff series Fantastic Beasts after he lost his libel case against the British tabloid The Sun, which had characterized Depp as a wife beater. Madds Mikkelson replaced Depp as dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald in 2022s Fantastic Beast: The Secrets of Dumbledore.
The actor, best known for Pirates of the Caribbean and Sweeney Todd, made his directorial debut in 1997 with The Brave, in which he starred alongside Marlon Brando. The neo-Western was critically and commercially derided, with Varietys review calling the film turgid and unbelievable. He hasnt directed a film since then, but hes produced (or executive produced) several movies including Hugo, The Lone Ranger and Minimata.
The film also marks another collaboration between Pacino and Navidi, who have worked together over the years on 2004s The Merchant Of Venice, 2011s Wilde Salomé, and 2013s Salomé (2013).
This project has been very close to Als heart. Al introduced me to the play Modigliani many years ago and I instantly fell in love with it, said Navidi. This is a slice of Modis life and not a bio. Its been a dream of mine to work with Johnny again — hes a true artist with an amazing vision to bring this great story to the screen.
Johnny Depp Channels Controversial King Louis XV in Jeanne du Barry First-Look. French filmmaker Maïwenn is teasing the first look at Johnny Depp as the controversial King Louis XV in Jeanne du Barry, a historical romance drama about a royals concubine.
Its Depps first film role since his highly publicized defamation trial against ex-wife Amber Heard. The jury found that Heard had defamed Depp in her 2018 Washington Post opinion piece, which alluded to being a victim of domestic violence. However, the jury also found that Depp defamed Heard, through his attorney, while fighting back against her charges.
Jeanne du Barry started shooting at the end of July (after the trial wrapped in June) in Paris and the Île-de-France region, using landmarks like the Palace of Versailles as backdrops. Maïwenn, who also wrote the screenplay with Teddy Lussi-Modeste, is playing the title role. The story follows Jeanne, a young working-class woman who uses her intelligence and allure to climb the social hierarchy. She lands on the radar of King Louis XV who, unaware of her status as courtesan, falls madly in love. Against all propriety and etiquette, Jeanne moves to Versailles, where her arrival scandalizes the court.
The cast will also include Benjamin Lavernhe, Pierre Richard, Melvil Poupaud, Noémie Lvovsky, Pascal Greggory and India Hair.
In real life, Louis XV was nicknamed the beloved and reigned for 59 years, one of the longest stints in French history. However, he died as an unpopular royal after being accused of corruption and debauchery.
Jeanne du Barry is Depps first major acting role since the 2020 independent film Minamata, in which he played war photographer W. Eugene Smith. Later in 2020, Depp was forced by Warner Bros. to exit the Harry Potter spinoff series Fantastic Beasts after he lost his libel case against the British tabloid The Sun, which had characterized Depp was a wife beater. Madds Mikkelson replaced Depp as dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald in 2022s Fantastic Beast: The Secrets of Dumbledore.
The Paris-based Why Not Productions, IN2 and France Télévisions will produce Jeanne du Barry. Wild Bunch International (Titane) is handling world sales. Le Pacte is distributing the film in France. Netflix has licensed the film to stream in France after it plays in theaters.
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