Popular actor, producer and musician Johnny Depp is all set to receive a lifetime achievement award from the San Sebastian Film festival. But all did not appreciate this achievement. Women filmmakers of a famous leading group in Spain condemned the decision made by the San Sebastian Film festival. Their statement says that it will reflect badly on the international events side, after a British judge ruled last year that allegations of domestic violence against the actor were “substantially correct”. Johnny Depp is accused of abusing his ex-wife Amber Heard.
Cristina Andreu, the President of Spain’s Association of Female Filmmakers and Audio-visual Media, said she was “very surprised” by the decision, announced Monday, to award Depp the Donostia Award at the festival’s 69th edition next month. The award is the event’s top prize and aims to honour lifetime achievement.
“This speaks very badly of the festival and its leadership, and transmits a terrible message to the public: ‘It doesn’t matter if you are an abuser as long as you are a good actor’,” Andreu said.
Johnny Depp is one of the most controversial actors in the industry. In a statement on the website of the international event, the festival, based in the Basque resort town, praised Johnny Depp as “one of contemporary cinema’s most talented and versatile actors”, announcing that he would be given the Donostia award on 22 September. The festival made no mention of the scandal that Johnny Depp is involved in. The scandal is currently engulfing Johnny Depp’s career following the actor’s loss in the libel case against the publisher of the Sun newspaper in which the high court concluded he had assaulted his former wife Amber Heard on multiple occasions.
The Japan based drama Minamata, which was the actor’s most recent film, is yet to be released in the US, resulting in a claim by its director Andrew Levitas that Hollywood studio MGM wanted to “bury” the film.
Johnny Depp was also asked to step down from his role as Gellert Grindelwald in the third Fantastic Beasts film, and has been replaced by Mads Mikkelsen.
Johnny Depp is also suing his ex-wife for $50 million in Virginia over a Washington Post opposite the editorial page essay that she wrote claiming to have been a victim of domestic violence, though she did not name Johnny Depp in the piece. That trial has been delayed until April 2022.