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Mads Mikkelsen's One Regret About Taking Over For Johnny Depp In Fantastic Beasts 3

Mads Mikkelsen, perhaps best known for starring in NBC's "Hannibal," being an internet boyfriend, and starring in Rihanna's "Bi*** Better Have My Money" video, will soon be adding yet another line to his already impressive resume — the Danish actor is taking over the role of dark wizard Gellert Grindelwald from the beleaguered Johnny Depp in the third film of the "Fantastic Beasts" franchise.

Depp had been set to reprise the role of the mad antagonist of the Harry Potter spin-off films, as he portrayed the character in the second film, "Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald," after making a brief cameo in the first film. However, Warner Bros., the studio that produces the movies, asked him to resign from the project after he lost a libel case against News Group Newspapers. Depp sued the company in British court in 2018 after an disturbing allegations and domestic assault accusations from his ex-wife, Amber Heard. With that in mind, the court ruling was likely just the final straw for Warner Bros, as outrage over Depp's inclusion in the movies had been brewing since the first film as a result of the allegations.

Not long after his case ended, Depp announced via Instagram in November 2020 that he was departing the project, and Mikkelsen was chosen as his replacement. In a new interview with The Sunday Times, the actor has opened up about joining the fantasy franchise and has expressed just one regret about taking over for Depp.

Mads Mikkelsen wishes he could have talked to Johnny Depp before taking over his "Fantastic Beasts" role

Although "Fantastic Beasts 3" — the film has not yet been titled — doesn'y hit theaters until July 2022, Mikkelsen spoke with The Sunday Times about his decision to take on the role of Grindelwald after Depp departed the project. In the interview, the "Another Round" star revealed he never got the chance to actually speak with Depp about taking over for him.

"Obviously, they were going to do the film, and obviously [Depp] was not involved any more. But I didn't have a dog in that fight," Mikkelsen told the paper about taking on the role. "I don't know what happened [in his private life], and I don't know if it was fair, him losing the job, but I just knew that the show was going on, and I would've loved to have talked to him about it if I had the chance, but I just don't know him in that sense."

Depp left "Fantastic Beasts 3" on November 6 after having filmed just one scene for the movie. This meant there wouldn't be extensive reshoots to cover for his absence, but it also meant the studio was obviously in a hurry to find a replacement and get everyone back to work. News of Mikkelsen's casting broke just a couple weeks later, on November 25. "They called me and they were obviously in a hurry, and I loved the script and so said yes," Mikkelsen said of the casting process. "I know it was controversial for many people, but that's just the way it plays out once in a while."

"Fantastic Beasts 3" is scheduled to hit theaters July 15, 2022.