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Johnny Depp jokes about presidential assassination

Johnny Depp cracked a joke about presidential assassination at the  Glastonbury Festival in Somerset, England.

"I think he needs help," he said, referring to the current commander in chief. Then continued, "This is going to be in the press... it's horrible: When was the last time an actor assassinated a president?"

(Answer: 1865. John Wilkes Booth was an American actor who shot President Abraham Lincoln at Ford's Theatre.)

Depp followed that up by stressing, "I'm not an actor. I lie for a living."

Author and commentator Eric Schiffer , CEO of, said the comment could impact how well Depp's new movie, "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales," does at the box office.

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"Saying you want to off the president is lighting your hair on fire with nuclear material," Schiffer said. "Half of moviegoers now plan to assassinate Depp's box office."

Update: the White House released this statement:

“President Trump has condemned violence in all forms and its sad that others like Johnny Depp have not followed his lead. I hope that some of Mr. Depp’s colleagues will speak out against this type of rhetoric as strongly as they would if his comments were directed to a democrat elected official.”

(POTUS himself has not yet responded, but we're keeping an eye on his Twitter account.)

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It's unclear if Depp's comments will spark the sort of backlash that enveloped comedian Kathy Griffin after she posed with a photo of herself holding a prop of President Donald Trump's head. The stunt cost her a gig with CNN and tour dates.

Griffin posted a somber video shortly after the firestorm sparked by the image, saying, “I sincerely apologize. I’m a comic. I crossed the line.. I went way too far. The image is too disturbing. I understand how it offends people. It wasn’t funny. I get it.”

More recently she struck a more defensive chord during a news conference saying, “We all know what’s going on here. They’re using me as a shiny object so that nobody’s talking about his FBI investigation…I’ve had everybody turn on me. I just want to make everybody laugh.”

While she did repeat her apology for posting the photo, Griffin suggested the anger over the image is a political cover.

“My impression is that they have mobilized their Army,” she said. “It’s quite clear to me that they are using me as a distraction. I’m not going to be collateral damage for this fool. I think he’s a fool. I think the president is a fool.”

She became emotional, asked what the future holds: “I don’t think I will have a career over this. I’m going to be honest. He broke me.”

Depp has now apologized, reports People:

“I apologize for the bad joke I attempted last night in poor taste about President Trump. It did not come out as intended, and I intended no malice. I was only trying to amuse, not to harm anyone.”

About the Author

Jennifer Brett is a multiplatform journalist and digital coach. She writes The Buzz blog for

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