Johnny Depp became the latest celebrity to invite controversy by making a thinly veiled allusion to the killing of President Donald Trump, asking the crowd at the Glastonbury arts festival at its new Cineramageddon drive-in movie theatre on Thursday night in England, “When was the last time an actor assassinated a president?”
The comments, interpreted as a nod to the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln by John Wilkes Booth more than 150 years ago, sparked widespread condemnation.
Johnny Depp apologized in a written statement first reported by People Magazine for the “bad joke” he made, calling it “in poor taste.”
In a statement to People magazine, the actor said, “I apologise 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.”
Lara Trump, President Trump’s daughter-in-law, told Fox News’ ‘Hannity’ on Friday that Johnny Depp is ‘not doing himself any favors’ with fans when jokes about assassinating President Trump.
“Listen, I was in Iowa with my father-in-law for the rally the other day,” she said. “What I can tell you is that people in this country are sick and tired of this sort of thing. They don’t think it’s cute. They don’t think it’s funny. Johnny Depp is not doing himself any favors with fans of his by doing things like this.”
But Lara told Hannity that Depp’s comments are not an anomaly. “It really does speak to a bigger problem, which is that this sort of thing has been normalized,” she said. “We see what happened with Shakespeare in the Park, we see Kathy Girffin, we see late-night hosts, Madonna going to blow up the White House. It’s out of control and it’s really, really sad. And as a family member, as an American, it’s incredibly disappointing.”
The White House also issued a statement on Friday, saying, “President Trump has condemned violence in all forms and it’s 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.”