Mads Mikkelsen wanted to speak to Johnny Depp about ‘Fantastic Beasts’ role

"I know it was controversial for many people, but that’s just the way it plays out once in a while"

Fantastic Beasts 3 star Mads Mikkelsen has said he “would have loved to have talked to” Johnny Depp about replacing him in the film.

The Hannibal actor was cast as Gellert Grindelwald in the forthcoming third film in the Harry Potter spin-off franchise, taking over from Depp who was asked to resign by Warner Bros after losing his libel case against his ex-wife Amber Heard.

Speaking to The Times (per Film-News), Mikkelsen said: “I mean, obviously, they were going to do the film, and obviously he was not involved any more.

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“But I didn’t have a dog in that fight. And I don’t know what happened [in his private life], and I don’t know if it was fair, him losing the job, but I just knew that the show was going on, and I would have loved to have talked to him about it if I had the chance, but I just don’t know him in that sense.

“But they called me and they were obviously in a hurry, and I loved the script and so said yes. And I know it was controversial for many people, but that’s just the way it plays out once in a while.”

Mads Mikkelsen
Mads Mikkelsen. CREDIT: Daniele Venturelli/WireImage

The actor previously said that copying Depp’s portrayal of the character would have been “creative suicide” (May 7).

“Nobody’s interested in me going in there and trying to copy anything, that would be creative suicide immediately, especially when it’s been done before and masterfully,” he told Collider.

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In April, Mikkelsen also revealed he had previously auditioned for Fantastic Four, and called the experience “kind of humiliating”.

“I know a lot of casting is just first impressions, is there anything there that reminds the producer and the director of the character they’re looking for?” the actor said.

“But I find it rude to ask people to come into a room and say one line while pretending you have 80-foot arms like the rubber man.”

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