Actor Johnny Depp has exited Warner Bros.’ “Fantastic Beasts” franchise and his role of the dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald.
Depp announced his departure on his official Instagram account, citing that Warner Bros. asked him to resign from the role.
“I wish to let you know that I have been asked to resign by Warner Bros. from my role as Grindelwald in Fantastic Beasts and I have respected and agreed to that request,” wrote Depp in the post.
This news comes less than a week after Depp’s loss in a libel case against “The Sun” in the U.K. over abuse allegations from his ex-wife, actress Amber Heard, per Variety.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Warner Bros. has stated that Depp will be recast for “Fantastic Beasts 3,” which is currently in production and set to release in summer 2022. No specific actor has been named to take over the role at the time of writing.
Depp portrayed Grindelwald only as a cameo at the end of “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” after the character was portrayed by Colin Farrell for the majority of the film (disguised as a wizard named Percival Graves), but had a significantly larger presence in the sequel, “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald.”