Johnny Depp’s new release Minimata that premiered at Berlin Film Festival is the life story of legendary photographer W Eugene Smith and while many find the story intriguing, it’s Depp’s own adaptation of the character that has us attentive.
“A broken alcoholic who finds a purpose and sort of a new chapter in his life,” said Depp at the festival.
“Yeah, heard that story somewhere before,” he added with a smile as he confessed resonating with the photographer who once en route to suicide was given one last task that made him a success story.
Encouraged by the editor of Life Magazine and some activists, Eugene was asked to go to Japan and cover the plight of people of Minamata who were impacted by the chemical plant in town and its poison. Eugene not only went but created a cover story that went on to hail him as Hero of World War 2 for his photojournalism.
Alongside, Depp the other cast include Japanese actors Hirayuki Sanada and Minami, whereas Bill Nighy is also featured in the Andrew Levitas directorial.
Minami plays Aileen, the activist who had Eugene go to Japan and then became his wife.
“Gene is very lucky. He died years ago but we’re all here. Through his photography he is very much alive,” said Aileen Smith also present at the press conference alongside the film premier.