After Johnny Depp made headlines throughout 2022 for the highly-public defamation trial with ex-wife Amber Heard that ended in his favor, the Pirates of the Caribbean actor headed to France in the fall to make his first movie in years, a French film called Jeanne du Barry from director/actor Maiwenn. Just a couple days after it was announced that Jeanne du Barry would be getting a fancy premiere at this spring’s Cannes Film Festival, now Maiwenn is being accused of assault.
The accomplished French filmmaker and actor is being sued by the editor-in-chief of Mediapart magazine, Edwy Plenel, for allegedly attacking him at a restaurant back in February. As confirmed by a Variety report, the lawsuit comes after Plenel filed a police complaint on March 7 where he detailed that Maiwenn came up to the journalist while he was having dinner at a restaurant, grabbed him by the hair, spit in his face and left the location, all without saying a single word to him.
Plenel is reportedly “traumatized” by the events that transpired at the seventh arrondissement of Paris. Prior to Maiwenn apparently disrupting the editor-in-chief’s meal, she was sitting by herself at a nearby table. Maiwenn does have a connection with Plenel’s magazine in regards to a series of stories that were written about her ex-husband and The Fifth Element and Leon the Professional filmmaker Luc Besson, with whom she shares a daughter.
Mediapart published a testimony from actor Sand Van Roy, who accused Besson of sexual assault, along with apparently being a big part of the #MeToo conversation in France – a topic with which Maiwenn has notably not aligned herself. If the allegations are true, did Maiwenn recognize the journalist? At this time, the Jeanne du Barry filmmaker has yet to comment on the matter.
Maiwenn’s upcoming movie with Johnny Depp has the actor leading the film as Louis XV. The movie will follow the life of its titular person, a woman who grew up impoverished and went on to become part of the court of the former King of France and his last official mistress. Maiwenn stars in the film as Jeanne du Barry and will share many scenes with Depp. It was announced this week that the movie will be the opening film at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival, alongside massive titles like Wes Anderson’s Asteroid City, James Mangold’s Indiana Jones and the Dial of Destiny and Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon.
After Jeanne du Barry premieres at Cannes, the movie is expected to drop on streaming for those who have a Netflix subscription. It has not been detailed when the movie will be released, but it’s set to find its first audiences in France on May 16.