Helena Bonham Carter Defends Johnny Depp and J.K. Rowling, Hates Cancel Culture

Helena Bonham Carter says she hates cancel culture and backs frequent co-star Johnny Depp and Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling in a new interview.

“Do you ban a genius for their sexual practices? There would be millions of people who if you looked closely enough at their personal life you would disqualify them. You can’t ban people. I hate cancel culture. It has become quite hysterical and there’s a kind of witch hunt and a lack of understanding,” she told The Times of London in a freewheeling interview in which she also suggested mandatory therapy for anyone seeking public office.

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Asked about Hollywood men whose careers have been sidelined by off-camera behavior, she says that she doesn’t believe actors like Kevin Spacey have a path to redemption. But she says she believes her frequent co-star Johnny Depp has been “completely vindicated” after he won his defamation suit against Amber Heard, who accused him of domestic abuse.

“I think he’s fine now. Totally fine,” she said of Depp, with whom she appeared in films including Alice in Wonderland, Sweeney Todd, Corpse Bride and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, all of which were directed by her former partner, Tim Burton. Depp is godfather to her and Burton’s two children.

Bonham Carter, currently starring in Netflix’s Enola Holmes 2, also accused Heard of seizing on #MeToo.

“My view is that she got on that pendulum. That’s the problem with these things — that people will jump on the bandwagon because it’s the trend and to be the poster girl for it,” Bonham Carter said.

The Fight Club star also defended Harry Potter creator J.K. Rowling, who has been criticized as transphobic. Bonham Carter played Bellatrix Lestrange in four Harry Potter films.

“It’s horrendous, a load of bollocks. I think she has been hounded,” Bonham Carter. “It’s been taken to the extreme, the judgmentalism of people. She’s allowed her opinion, particularly if she’s suffered abuse. Everybody carries their own history of trauma and forms their opinions from that trauma and you have to respect where people come from and their pain. You don’t all have to agree on everything — that would be insane and boring. She’s not meaning it aggressively, she’s just saying something out of her own experience.”

Helena Bonham Carter also said younger actors in the franchise — including Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint — are within their rights to criticize Rowling, but added just a touch of shade: “Personally I feel they should let her have her opinions, but I think they’re very aware of protecting their own fan base and their generation.”

Main image: Johnny Depp and Helena Bonham Carter in Sweeney Todd.