Daniel Radcliffe ‘Can See Why People Are Frustrated’ with Johnny Depp’s ‘Fantastic Beasts’ Casting
Harry Potter has spoken.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Daniel Radcliffe offered his thoughts on Johnny Depp's controversial casting in the forthcoming Harry Potter series spin-off, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald.
While Radcliffe said he hopes he can be supportive of the producers who "gave [him] a great start in life and an amazing job," he admitted that it's "a very hard thing" for him to consider Depp, who has been accused of physically and emotionally abusing his ex-wife, Amber Heard, as a major player in the ever-evolving mythos and world of the beloved magical franchise.
"I can see why people are frustrated with the response that they were given from that," he continued. "I’m not saying anything that anybody hasn’t already said — and this is a weird analogy to draw — [but] in the NFL, there are lots of players arrested for smoking weed and there is other people’s behavior that goes way beyond that and it’s tolerated because they’re very famous players. I suppose the thing I was struck by was, we did have a guy [actor Jamie Waylett] who was reprimanded for weed on the [original Harry Potter] film, essentially, so obviously what Johnny has been accused of is much greater than that."
In 2009, Waylett, who played Hogwarts student and Draco Malfoy's right-hand-man Vincent Crabbe in the first six Harry Potter films, was released from his contract after being arrested for growing marijuana in his mother's home.
Meanwhile, writer J.K. Rowling and director David Yates, as well as the film's studio, Warner Bros., have all defended Depp's casting, despite an outcry from fans who feel Depp's continued attachment to the film is unethical in light of Heard's allegations.
In 2017, Rowling shared a statement regarding Depp's casting, writing on her blog, "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 movies."
Depp plays titular evil wizard Gillert Grindelwald in The Crimes of Grindelwald, out November 16.