Johnny Depp doesn’t understand why y’all find his new Dior campaign, Sauvage, so offensive!
The embattled star addressed the visual, which was pulled last month after being considered offensive to Native Americans, at the Deauville Film Festival over the weekend, claiming the questionable teaser did not reflect the depth and sensitivity of the full project.
“A teaser obviously is a very concentrated version of images and there were objections to the teaser of the small film. The film has never been seen.”
Speaking on the breadth of the short film the teaser was taken from, titled We Are the Land, the actor insisted:
“There was never — and how could there be or how would there be — any dishonorable [intent]. The film was made with a great respect for the indigenous people not just of North America but all over the world. It’s a pity that people jumped the gun and made these objections. However, their objections are their objections.”
How could there be dishonorable intent, he asks?
Maybe because the cologne’s name is the French word for “savage”? You know, what the European settlers called the indigenous people of America so they could justify taming — and massacring — them? The word “savage” has more historical context than we could ever imagine, and the fact Dior thought it was cool to use Native American imagery along with it is what many took as dishonorable intent.
As we reported, the clip showed the Oscar nominee wandering through the desert as Native Americans perform a war dance in traditional garb. The company received complaints, and the clip was swiftly taken down.
Depp, who also faced criticism after the vid was released, said there has been no final decision to pull the ad, adding the creative teams were planning to meet and work with those who were offended by the clip to come to a resolution. He explained:
“I can assure you that no one has any reason to go out to try to exploit. It was a film made out of great respect and with great respect and love for the Native American peoples to bring light to them. They haven’t had the greatest amount of help out of the United States government. The idea is as pure as it ever was, so we will come to an agreement so that everyone is happy.”
The actor noted the creative team had worked with the Comanche Nation and other indigenous advocacy organizations during the making of the film.
His comments came at the Deauville Film Festival, where he was on hand to present his latest film, Waiting for the Barbarians, and receive a career honor from legendary actress Catherine Deneuve.
Depp poked fun at the uncertainty of his own career while addressing the honor, joking:
“I’ll probably be trying to figure out why I have [this honor] for the next 20 years — if I last that long.”
At this rate, we wouldn’t bet on it!
[Image via Dior/YouTube]