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Since the recent release of The Secrets of Dumbledore on HBO Max, Harry Potter fans have taken a look at the film and many have been disappointed about the exclusion of Johnny Depp’s Grindelwald in the final execution. The film received a slightly better reception than its predecessor, but did far worse at the box-office.
Despite the less-than-stellar reception and the god-awful box-office receipts, fans’ concerns have been mostly focused on Johnny Depp’s absence inside the fabula of the film. Back in November 2020, Depp lost a libel case against media outlet The Sun and was immediately asked to resign from his role as Grindelwald.
Johnny Depp played Grindelwald in several different ways for the production to choose one they liked the most. No one can replace him. @WarnerBrosUK @wbpictures @WBHomeEnt #JusticeForJohnnyDepp pic.twitter.com/3u8HhFil2C
— epiphany (@jacxpearl) November 10, 2020
As a result of the debacle between Depp and Warner Brothers, Mads Mikkelsen replaced Depp later that month and was cast as Grindelwald in The Secrets of Dumbledore.
While many critics have praised Mikkelsen’s performance as superior to that of Depp’s, it doesn’t make it right by any means.
Here is why Depp’s take on the character is the best.
Disclaimer: Article reflects the views of the author.
What makes Depp the best Grindelwald in the franchise
His performance is poetic
In J.K. Rowling’s dark film The Crimes of Grindelwald, Depp proves to be a powerful and formidable opponent in the picture’s presence and gave a performance with both grit and dark whimsy that could only be captured by Johnny Depp himself.
In a scene where Grindelwald is walking down the street with his cronies, he and his henchman kill a family and use their house as a safe house. The evildoer then goes into the bedroom and has his followers kill a helpless infant.
What makes Depp’s performance so great is that his face illustrates everything one could ever need to know about the character without Depp ever saying a word. His face even displays a sense of pity and self-righteousness that can be seen as he kills his victims.
His look stands out
Something that made him stand out from Colin Farrell and Mads Mikkelsen is Depp’s sinister, snowy look. Like many great villains, something that needs to be memorable about them is their look at the beginning and for them to sustain a sort of ubiquitous nature in the hearts of cinema lovers. Farrell’s performance wasn’t memorable enough for that, and while Mikkelsen was an improvement and more sinister, he didn’t seem to separate himself from the crowd in any way.
Depp’s white tips and heterochromia are an even balance of cynicism and charisma that has the character at his peak in his final form.
Depp’s Grindelwald is not wasted
Unlike the other two iterations, Depp’s villain has been a pure delight to witness on screen and was used to the fullest extent. Farrell was just a means to an end and the third film with Mikkelsen had a lame final act. It was only Johnny Depp’s iteration that had a purposeful arc and decent screen time.
From the time Depp steals the carriage to when he has his blue fire dragon monsters attack Newt Scamander and his friends in Paris, Depp utilizes the character to the best of his abilities and is unflinching in his execution.