Johnny Depp announces he will direct first film in 25 years

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FAIRFAX, VA - MAY 27: Actor Johnny Depp sits in his vehicle as he departs the Fairfax County Courthouse on May 27, 2022 in Fairfax, Virginia. Closing arguments in the Depp v. Heard defamation trial, brought by Johnny Depp against his ex-wife Amber Heard, concluded today and jury deliberations begin. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)
Johnny Depp has announced his first directing project in 25 years. (Getty Images)

Johnny Depp has announced he will be returning to the director's chair for the first time in 25 years.

The controversial actor is set to direct Modigliani, a biopic about the acclaimed Italian artist.

In a statement, Depp said: “The saga of Mr. Modigliani’s life is one that I’m incredibly honored, and truly humbled, to bring to the screen. It was a life of great hardship, but eventual triumph — a universally human story all viewers can identify with.”

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While no casting details have been revealed, Al Pacino is on board as a producer and the film is due to start shooting in early 2023.

U.S. actor Johnny Depp arrives at the High Court in London in London, Wednesday, July 22, 2020. Depp is suing News Group Newspapers, publisher of The Sun, and the paper's executive editor, Dan Wootton, over an April 2018 article that called him a
Johnny Depp previously directed The Brave starring Marlon Brando. (Frank Augstein)

Best known for his role as Jack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean series, Depp has previously directed a single film.

In 1997, he made The Brave which starred himself and Marlon Brando in a story about revenge and snuff films.

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It premiered at the Cannes Film Festival to negative reviews and has still never been released commercially in the US.

The Brave also featured music from Iggy Pop.

Depp was also recently confirmed to star in his first film in three years with La Favorite, a French film about King Louis XV with the Sweeney Todd actor playing the second longest serving King of France.

US actor and first-time director Johnny Depp (R) looks away as Pop star Iggy Pop poses  for photographers 10 May before the presentation of his film
Johnny Depp and Iggy Pop at the premiere of The Brave. (AFP via Getty Images)

La Favorite is directed by and co-stars Maiwenn as well as Louis Garrel.

It will be Depp's first role since the little seen Minamata was released in early 2020. Minamata itself followed a series of commercial failures for Depp who was once one of the most popular actors in Hollywood.

Depp, who also performs as a musician, is currently on the comeback trail following his defamation trial with ex-wife Amber Heard. The jury in the trial ruled that Heard had defamed Depp after writing an op-ed in which she made references to "domestic assault" and "sexual violence".

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