According to Deadline, France’s Production house has unveiled a sneak image of actor Johnny Depp dressed as King Louis XV for the upcoming historical romance Jeanne du Barry, which also stars renowned French director Mawenn Le Besco.
The plot of Jeanne Du Barry is based on the life of Jeanne du Barry, Louis XV’s last mistress. Du Barry, a working-class lady who lives in extreme poverty, becomes Louis’ favorite companion and a courtesan. She moves to Versailles after falling in love with him, much to the dismay of the chattering court, who are now scandalized by her presence.
Beginning in the 1980s, Depp appeared in movies like Nightmare on Elm Street and television shows like 21 Jump Street. He is best known for his work with director Tim Burton and for playing the title role in the cult classic Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, adapted from the same-titled novel by Hunter S. Thompson in 1971. This will be the first major motion picture since Depp’s contentious defamation case against actress and ex-wife Amber Heard.
With Teddy Lussi-Modeste, Le Basco is the film’s co-writer and director. Lead producers will be Grégoire Sorlat and Pascal Caucheteux of Why Not Productions. Additionally, IN2 and France Télévisions will produce. According to Deadline, Jeanne du Barry began production on July 26 and will last 11 weeks. In addition to specific sequences being shot in the studio, the production took place in various locales, including Versailles and other parts of Paris.
Le Besco, a French actress and director, started as a child star. In her one-woman shows, Le Pois Chiche (The Chickpea) and I am An Actress. She detailed her experiences as a pressurized young actress. She played the lead in the 1987 movie L’été meurtrier (One Deadly Summer). For foreign audiences and science fiction enthusiasts, her most notable performance is as the blue opera diva Diva Plavalaguna in Luc Besson’s The Fifth Element.
In many locations around France, including Versailles and Paris, the production’s filming got underway last month.
Following his defamation trial victory over his ex-wife Amber Heard, in which the jury awarded him $15 million in damages (Heard will only have to pay $10.35 million due to the Virginia statute cap on punitive damages; the court decreased the amount), the actor will be making his first feature film in three years with the project.
Depp was judged to have falsely accused Heard on one of three counts in her countersuit against him. Damages of $2 million were given to her.
In a statement following the victory, Depp claimed that the “best is yet to come” for him and that the jury “given me my life back.”
It would be interesting to watch how this historically based movie depicts the courtesan’s and the French king’s connection. Le Besco’s skills as a director and performer may now receive more recognition on a global scale.