Thursday, 15 March 2018 16:02

The Real Crimes of Grindelwald? - BBC Schools Report

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Release of new Fantastic Beasts trailer met with controversy over casting of Johnny Depp

By Lydia and Diti


Earlier this week the trailer for ‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’ was released online and brought a spark to the world of all Harry Potter fans.

As well as giving us a glimpse of Newt Scamander’s trip to Paris and a first good look at Jude Law’s depiction of the young Albus Dumbledore, the trailer gave a glimpse of the villainous Gellert Grindelwald in its final seconds.

But not all fans had a positive response to seeing ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ star Johnny Depp in Grindelwald’s attire.

Allegations were made against the 53 year-old actor by his ex-wife Amber Heard in 2016. 

Married in 2015 after meeting on the set of ‘The Rum Diary’, the couple divorced in January 2017 after Heard accused Depp of physical and emotional abuse.

Although statements from his former partner, Vanessa Paradis, and daughter, Lily Rose Depp, suggest that the claims made against him are “outrageous” and Depp is “nothing but a wonderful father”, many actors, celebrities and other high profile figures have expressed their views against his casting in the film.

Paradis, who separated from Depp in 2012 after 14 years of marriage, said: “In all the years I have known Johnny, he has never been physically abusive with me and this looks nothing like the man I lived with for 14 wonderful years.”

Daniel Radcliffe, although supportive of the film producer’s defence of Depp’s casting, said: “I can see why people are frustrated with the response that they were given.” He then drew a similarity with American basketball players who break the law but “it’s tolerated because they’re very famous players.”

Most CCHSG students are very excited for the upcoming film. Although they seemed unaware of the controversy surrounding Depp, they believe that it is right for an actor to be denied a role if the allegations made against them are true. 

Many students stated that they would keep Depp in the villainous role only because it would keep continuity with the original ‘Fantastic Beasts’ film. Others said his casting does match their moral principles. However, two thirds of students surveyed agreed with J.K Rowling and David Yates’s decision to cast him. 

Students taking part in our survey

Students taking part in our survey.

History teacher Mr Greatorex, said: “To not cast him you’d need conviction in court or an impending case.” 

Many students agreed with this standpoint, saying that Depp’s career and personal life are separate, with one Year 9 student saying, “he’s cast with acting and not his personal life”.

‘Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald’ will be released on 16th November 2018.


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