Fans threatening boycott of Johnny Depp’s Stockholm gig

An iconic Stockholm venue has defended its decision to let Johnny Depp and his Hollywood Vampires band perform, despite fans threatening to boycott the gig following domestic violence claims by the actor's wife.

Fans threatening boycott of Johnny Depp's Stockholm gig
Johnny Depp and the Hollywood Vampires performing at the 2016 Grammy Awards. Photo: Matt Sayles/Invision/AP

Depp arrives in Stockholm amid turbulent times for the actor, who has been grabbing global headlines after his actress wife Amber Heard accused him of assaulting her. He denies the claims and has not been charged with any crime.

The Hollywood couple, who married in 2015, are currently involved in divorce proceedings. Heard has been granted a temporary restraining order, for which the next hearing is to take place on June 17th.

Depp is going on stage for the first time in Sweden at Stockholm's Gröna Lund theme park on Monday evening together with rock legends Alice Cooper and Joe Perry as the Hollywood Vampires band.

But fans have hit out on social media, urging ticket holders to stay at home following Heard's allegations.

“I was planning on going to the concert but I will boycott it,” posted one Facebook user on the park's event page, using the hashtag #ImWithAmber.

“Are you taking a stand against this, Gröna Lund?” wrote another. “I hope that as many as possible do the right thing and boycott this.”

Gröna Lund meanwhile replied to the criticism on Facebook and in interviews with Swedish media.

“Of course we renounce all violence. However, it is just as important not to judge people beforehand and that you are innocent until proven guilty,” press spokesperson Annika Troselius told The Local on Monday.

Gröna Lund in Stockholm. Photo: Janerik Henriksson/TT

Security was being boosted at the park ahead of the gig, but Troselius said they were not expecting any disturbances or live protests: “There have been no such indications. Nobody has been in touch with us about it. (…) We always call in extra security staff for all big concerts, it's nothing unusual.”

And it looked unlikely on Monday morning that recent headlines and social media rows would affect audience numbers.

“There are already people queuing outside,” Troselius said at around 10am. “If you want to see the concert you should be here in good time. We're expecting a lot of people.”

Hollywood Vampires was formed last year by the A-list Pirates of the Caribbean and Sweeney Todd actor and his friends to honour the music of icons who died from excess in the 1970s.

It takes its name from a celebrity drinking club formed by Alice Cooper 40 years ago which apparently included The Who drummer Keith Moon and at least one member of The Beatles.

Gröna Lund is this summer set to welcome other global acts including American soul legend Lionel Richie, New Zealand band Fat Freddy's Drop, Britpop veterans Suede and UK pop group Little Mix.

Last year's star performer was Lenny Kravitz who ended up making global headlines after he ripped his trousers and revealed that he didn't have any underwear on.


Harvey Weinstein not ‘just one bad apple’, it’s a bigger problem, says Stellan Skarsgård

Swedish Hollywood actor Stellan Skarsgård has become the latest in the industry to comment on the sexual scandal surrounding disgraced producer Harvey Weinstein.

Harvey Weinstein not 'just one bad apple', it's a bigger problem, says Stellan Skarsgård
Stellan Skarsgård, left, and Harvey Weinstein. Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT & Andy Kropa/Invision/AP

A number of stars have accused American film producer Weinstein of sexual harrassment, including Angelina Jolie and Gwyneth Paltrow. The list is growing longer every day, with three women saying they were raped, allegations which he denies.

But according to one of Sweden's most famous actors, Stellan Skarsgård – who had an international breakthrough in Good Will Hunting (1997), produced by Weinstein among others – the problem goes further and deeper.

“The man has been crushed and it is pointless to keep kicking. It only makes people think that it's about one single bad apple when this is a problem that exists wherever there is power and powerlessness and lots of women and men are exposed to daily abuse. And only some of it has to do with sex,” Skarsgård said in a text message sent to public broadcaster SVT's culture news show Kulturnyheterna on Friday.

Swedish director Lisa Langseth, whose latest movie Euphoria was shown at the Toronto Film Festival, told Kulturnyheterna that Weinstein's behaviour was openly known as Hollywood's worst kept secret.

“It's is so good that this is out, everyone has known about this for ages. It is just strange it's taken this long,” said Langseth. “Everyone knew about it. I don't know him, but still knew about it.”

She told Kulturnyheterna she had experienced a similar culture of power and silence in the Swedish theatre world around 15 years ago, but not these days and never in the Swedish movie world, she said.

“It doesn't exist in the same way any more and I am convinced that such structures are unsustainable. Those people don't have that kind of power in Sweden. There aren't production companies like that, we're too small a country.”

On Thursday two French actors – Bond girl Léa Seydoux and Florence Darel – became the latest to accuse Weinstein of sexual assault, with Seydoux saying she had been forced to defend herself against him.

“We were talking on the sofa when he suddenly jumped on me and tried to kiss me. I had to defend myself,” Seydoux wrote in an article in The Guardian, while Darel told French media that Weinstein had promised to make her big in the US if she became his mistress. These are only some of the many allegations.

Weinstein has since been fired from his production company, his wife has said she is leaving him, and both NYPD and the Metropolitan police in London are investigating sexual abuse allegations made against him.

He denies many of the claims, saying via a spokesperson to The New Yorker that “with respect to any women who have made allegations on the record, (he) believes that all of these relationships were consensual”.