Johnny Depp To Star As King Louis XV In Next Film From French Director Maïwenn

Johnny Depp is set to star as a French king, in case you were wondering which weird character with a wig he was going to take on next. Depp will play the role of King Louis XV in the upcoming as-yet-unnamed film from French director and actress Maïwenn ("Mon Roi," "Polisse"), according to the French website Satellifax (via Variety). The film will begin to shoot this summer, and will go on for three months around Paris, reportedly at Versailles Palace for the most part. Versaille has allowed filming before, including on the series "Versailles." 

Maïwenn will both direct the film and star in it as Jeanne du Barry, who was the mistress of Louis XV. The final one, in fact. King Louis XV was known as "le Bien-Aimé" or "the beloved," though he ended his reign as a very disliked monarch. The site speculates that the film will shoot in French, and obviously the lead actor will have to speak French. Of course, Depp lived there in France for years with Vanessa Paradis. I have never heard him speak French, but apparently he has an American accent. 

Jeanne du Barry and Louis XV

I'm not going to go into Depp's legal issues with his ex-wife Amber Heard here because I'm sure you've heard them. Let's talk about Maïwenn instead. Her work is generally set in modern times, and her film "DNA" was a Caes 2020 Official Selection. "Polisse" won the Cannes jury prize. She appeared as Neige in "DNA," but not in "Polisse" or "Mon Roi," which she wrote and directed. She has also performed as a stand-up comedian. 

Louis XV lived from February 15, 1710 until May 10, 1774. He became king at the age of five after his great-grandfather, Louis XIV the Sun King, died, though the kingdom was ruled by a regent until he hit the age of 13. Sure, sounds like a responsible decision, making a very young teenager the king. 

He did reign for close to 59 years, though, so he did something right. Louis XV's mistress, Jeanne du Barry, wasn't very well-liked by the court, including (understandably) the next queen, Marie Antoinette. Jeanne (along with Marie) was executed during the French revolution by guillotine. It will be interesting to see how the film plays out and when it takes place. Louis was 65 when he died, and Depp is currently 58, so that's close. Du Barry was much younger, and Maïwenn is 45.

Stay tuned for more news as we hear it.