KEY POINTS

  • Mads Mikkelsen is the new Gellert Grindelwald, Warner Bros. Studios confirmed
  • Mikkelsen will replace Johnny Depp, who resigned following his legal battle with a tabloid 
  • Depp will still receive his full pay despite not completing his scenes 

Mads Mikkelsen will officially take over Johnny Depp's role in the upcoming “Fantastic Beasts 3.” The news comes days after rumors began swirling that he will play Gellert Grindelwald following Depp's resignation.

Warner Bros. confirmed to E! News that Mikkelsen will be the antagonist in the third installment, days after the actor dismissed the hearsays as “rumors.” The outlet said that Jude Law, Eddie Redmayne and Ezra Miller are filming at Studios Leavesden.

“Fantastic Beasts 3” is now expected to hit theaters during summer 2022 after it was recently moved from its initial release date, Nov. 12, 2021, Variety reported. Warner Bros. has not yet announced an exact release date for the film.

Prior to confirmation that he will replace Depp in the “Harry Potter” spinoff series, the Danish star said that there have been no talks about it yet.

“Oh, that is on the rumor basis as we speak. So I know as much as you do from the newspapers. So I'm waiting for that phone call," Mikkelsen said.

Depp revealed earlier this month that the studio asked him to resign after he lost a legal battle against British tabloid The Sun over an article that referred to him as a “wife-beater.” This was in relation to his ex-wife Amber Heard’s claims that he was physically abusive toward her during their marriage.

“I have been asked to resign by Warner Bros. from my role as Grindelwald in ‘Fantastic Beasts’ and I have respected and agreed to that request,” Depp wrote on Instagram.

Even though he was replaced, he will still receive his full salary because of his pay-or-play contract. It is worth noting that before Mikkelsen was tapped for the “Fantastic Beasts 3” role, Depp has already shot a scene for the film.

After Depp announced his departure from the fantasy film, Law, who plays the young Albus Dumbledore in the film, addressed the matter and admitted that in cases like this, “you defer to the studio.”

“That's all you can do. Because you have to turn up and play your part. It was unusual for me because, in fact, on this particular role. Johnny had actually only done a day's filming, I think, on his own,” Law said.

Meanwhile, Depp’s former co-star, Stephen Dorff, recently came out in support of the embattled star, revealing in an interview that he had been “generous” and “friendly” to him when they worked together on “Public Enemy.”

Mads Mikkelsen Mads Mikkelsen is rumored to be part of Hideo Kojima's "Death Stranding." Photo: Getty Images/Tristan Fewings