Rihanna has faced backlash for playing Johnny Depp in the new Savage X Fenty show

Written by the author Oscar Holland, CNN

Actor Johnny Depp is set to appear in Rihanna’s new Savage X Fenty fashion show, sparking online outrage and calls for a boycott of the singer’s lingerie brand.

The 59-year-old actor, who is said to have hit the Hollywood high street amid his legal battle with ex-wife Amber Heard, has already filmed his cameo in the runway show, which premieres on Amazon’s Prime Video next week. Although Depp’s name is not mentioned in the press materials or in the trailer for the show, his appearance has been confirmed directly by CNN. Reps for Rihanna and Amazon did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the decision to drop Depp.

Described by Amazon as a “sexy fashion fever dream”, the fourth edition of the label’s star-studded show includes performances by Anitta and Burna Boy, as well as appearances by Cara Delevingne, Simu Liu and TikTok star Bella Poarch. After news of Depp’s involvement, fans started asking Rihanna to remove her scenes.

“The editing team better be here removing this man from this,” read a reply to a post on Savage X Fenty’s Instagram account promoting the show.

Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty Show Vol. dancers seen on stage. 4 in Simi Valley, California. Credit: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

On Twitter, users expressed their disapproval using the hashtag #DitchDepp, with some making threats. boycott label Music producer Drew Dixon describe decided the actor was “really disappointing,” British singer and actor Olly Alexander — who previously collaborated on a social media campaign with Savage X Fenty — announced on social media that he “won’t be wearing the brand.” longer
With the show not set to air until Wednesday, some commentators questioned whether Depp would make the final cut. “For those who are upset, I would wait to see if that actually happens.” he tweeted author Art Tavan. “That’s not how Rihanna shoots. Her brand is bulletproof.”

After their divorce in 2017, Depp sued Heard for $50 million over a Washington Post op-ed in which she described herself as “a public figure who represents domestic abuse.”

Rihanna goes "Black Panther 2: Wakanda Forever" Premiere at the Dolby Theater on October 26, 2022 in Hollywood, California.

Rihanna attends the premiere of “Black Panther 2: Wakanda Forever” at the Dolby Theater on October 26, 2022 in Hollywood, California. Credit: Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic/Getty Images

Heard countersued for $100 million, leading to an explosive televised trial in which both were found liable for defamation, although the jury awarded Depp greater damages.

Heard claims Depp abused her during their marriage, a claim the “Pirates of the Caribbean” actor has consistently denied. Depp has also claimed to have been a victim of domestic violence, which some of his fans have compared to Rihanna’s experience of abuse when she was in a relationship with singer Chris Brown. “Survivors Helping Survivors,” he wrote A Twitter user in support of the singer’s casting choice.

During the six-week trial, Depp said Heard’s accusations led to his removal from future “Pirates of the Caribbean” movies. The actor also lost his role in the “Fantastic Beasts” film franchise after unsuccessfully suing a UK newspaper for defamation over allegations of domestic violence.

Actress Marsai Martin and TikTok star Bella Poarch at Rihanna's Savage X Fenty Show Vol.  4.

Actress Marsai Martin and TikTok star Bella Poarch at Rihanna’s Savage X Fenty Show Vol. 4. Credit: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

Depp, however, has made several high-profile appearances in the months since the June verdict. In August, she made a surprise cameo appearance at MTV’s Video Music Awards, where a video of her face was superimposed on a life-size Moonman floating above the stage. “I just want you to know that I’m available for birthdays, bar mitzvahs, bat mitzvahs, weddings, wakes, any old thing you need,” she joked to the audience.
In his first big screen return, Depp will appear as King Louis XV in the upcoming French film “La Favorite.” He also reprized his role as Johnny Puff in the animated TV series “Puffins Impossible,” and will direct a film about Italian artist Amedeo Modigliani, according to Deadline and the Hollywood Reporter.
Savage X Fenty, which also makes men’s underwear, has been praised in the past for its inclusive size and diverse casting.

Image above: Johnny Depp pictured during his defamation trial against ex-wife Amber Heard at the Fairfax County Circuit Courthouse in Virginia on April 27, 2022.