As Johnny Depp Returns To Acting, He Also Has A Lucrative Side Gig

Johnny Depp at Rihanna's Savage X Fenty show.
(Image credit: Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Rihanna's Savage X Fenty Show Vol. 4 presented by Prime Video)

It’s been a tumultuous few years for actor Johnny Depp. The Pirates of the Caribbean star and his now ex-wife, Amber Heard, made headlines for a while due to their lengthy divorce proceedings and a very public libel lawsuit. Said case caused producers of the Fantastic Beasts films to ask Depp to step down from his role as Grindelwald after allegations of abuse came to light and put a halt to the Hollywood A-lister's career. However, with his legal troubles mostly behind him, the performer is finally returning to the world of acting, but his work in front of the camera isn’t his only source of income. That’s right, Depp has a very lucrative side gig, and it’s pretty impressive.

Johnny Depp has created a collection of silk-screen prints he's painted of public figures, including Heath Ledger and Bob Marley, which he sells through a London gallery for a substantial amount of money. According to Variety, the four-piece collection titled “Friends & Heroes II,” which is signed by the Dark Shadows actor, is available for £17,500 ($21,000) from Castle Fine Art. It also includes portraits of Ledger and Marley, together with River Phoenix and Hunter S. Thompson. The art retailer posted images of the star next to his collection on its Instagram, which can be seen below:

A post shared by Castle Fine Art (@castlegalleries) (opens in new tab)

A photo posted by on

In 2022, the Jack Sparrow actor's first signed prints, “Friends & Heroes,” sold out as soon as they went on sale, each of the prints earning $4,740 a piece. An impressive amount of money was undoubtedly a bit of help while the actor dealt with his legal trouble. The original collection included portraits of stars like Keith Richards, Al Pacino, Bob Dylan, and Elizabeth Taylor -- all celebrities who, as the title of the pieces implies, had some impact on Johnny Depp. 

In terms of his acting work, the 59-year-old star's next gig took him to France, as he stars as King Louis XV in a film by French director Maïwenn. The filmmaker will also co-star in the film as Jeanne du Barry, a countess that was Louis XV’s last mistress. The film, titled La Favorite, is set to premiere at the 2023 Cannes Film Festival in May.  It'll mark the actor’s first significant movie role since 2020’s Minimata.

While the back-and-forth between Johnny Depp and Amber Heard seems to be finally over, the public hasn’t heard the last of the couple’s troubled relationship. For instance, Discovery+ produced a two-part documentary, Johnny Vs. Amber, that examines the battle from both sides, including Depp’s defamation case against Heard, which would eventually see him get a favorable verdict in the summer of 2022.

It’s unclear if Johnny Depp's past legal troubles will have any further effect on his upcoming movie releases. Luckily for him, he has his art gig on the side to take a bit of the pressure off in case in case his acting engagements become scarce moving forward.

Ryan LaBee

Ryan graduated from Missouri State University with a BA in English/Creative Writing.