Pierre Niney returned to his announced participation in Johnny Depp’s next film on the famous artist Modigliani, in which he should share the poster with Al Pacino.
It was one of the strongest project announcements revealed during the 76th edition of the Cannes Film Festival: a new feature film directed by Johnny Depp, who came to the Croisette alongside Maïwenn for the opening screening of Jeanne du Barry, in which he embodies Louis XV.
The American media Deadline had announced that the actor would stage the life of the famous artist Amedeo Modigliani in the film soberly titled Modi. A casting has even been unveiled: Riccardo Scamarcio will slip into the shoes of the painter and sculptor while Al Pacino will portray the wealthy art collector Maurice Gangnat.
And a French actor completes this cast, Pierre Niney, who will play the painter Maurice Utrillo. If the Caesarized actor did not hide his joy at realizing his dream of sharing the screen with Al Pacino, the announcement of this project aroused strong reactions and created a controversy.
This, because of the legal disputes of Johnny Depp, whose presence in Cannes was already decried. As we recall, the American actor was opposed to his ex-girlfriend Amber Heard for acts of domestic violence. The long trial that followed resulted in this verdict: both parties were found guilty of defamation.
Pierre Niney responds to the controversy
The news of this new feature film by Johnny Depp has therefore revived the controversy, on which Pierre Niney returned to the microphone of Augustin Trapenard, duringan interview in Canneswhere the French actor came to present Le Livre des solutions, the new film by Michel Gondry, selected for the Quinzaine des Cinéastes.
“I try to be super attentive, precisely, today, to all the awakening of consciousness, which we need, which is taking place, but where there is still a lot of work. Obviously, I would tolerate working with anyone who would be recognized for acts of violence. If we talk about the project with Johnny Depp, which for the moment is even more than at the project stage, it’s been a film for four years which is in the pipes.”
Pierre Niney then explained that it was the fact of collaborating with Al Pacino that attracted him to this film, even though the name of Johnny Depp was not yet circulating: “Basically, it was the producers of Al Pacino, Johnny Depp was not yet attached to the project, who came to see me to offer me this role of a painter called Maurice Utrillo. It’s a very beautiful role. We have been discussing it with the producers of Al Pacino for a long time, it is a film that is really close to the heart of Al Pacino, who produces.
So is this project going to happen? Will Pierre Niney leave the distribution? The actor suggests that he allows himself time for reflection before making a final decision: “I try to be very attentive. I will continue to look into what exactly happened, because in fact it is the legal cases that are a bit complex. But again, I remain very attentive and I asked to have somewhat complete assessments of all this, to try to understand this complicated legal situation”.
While waiting to learn more about the construction of Moldi, which is therefore already a lot of talk, Pierre Niney will be showing another project for which he will find his accomplice Hugo Gélin. After Comme des frères, the two are writing Irresistibles, “a choral film, which touches on the musical world a bit”, on a joint original idea by Hugo Gélin and Pierre Niney. According to Le Film Français, Hugo Gélin has been appointed to direct this feature film, the casting of which is not yet known.