Johnny Depp may have known more about his deep financial hole than he claims in a fraud lawsuit against his former management, even offering to sell most of his possessions–including his soul– to set things straight, according to emails entered as exhibits in the case.
The stunning revelations, reported by deadline, show just how perilous his finances had become and the extreme lengths he was willing to go to salvage the situation.
But the 53-year-old actor absolutely refused to take commercial flights.
“…regarding the plane situation,., i don’t have all that many options at the moment. a commercial flight with paparazzis in tow would be a fucking nightmare of monumental proportions,” he wrote in one email.
In a lawsuit filed in January, Depp accused the Management Group (TMG) of defrauding him out of tens of millions of dollars. He claimed TMG mismanaged his finances, took out loans without his approval and hid his dire financial straits from him.
The firm countersued detailing Depp’s astronomical spending.
Among the big ticket items, he spent $3 million to blast Hunter Thompson’s ashes out of a cannon into space and $18 million for a 150-foot yacht.
He spent $4 million on a failed record label, spent $30,000 a month on wine, $200,000 a month on private planes, $150,000 a month on round-the-clock security and $300,000 a month to maintain a staff of 40 people.
The managers also said they repeatedly warned him about his profligate spending to no avail.
IMG introduced the emails in the case, mostly from 2009, as part of a 109-page motion opposing Depp’s attempts to prevent his former agent and lawyer from being subpoenaed in the case, according to deadline.
“Depp wants to deny this discovery because it will establish that TMG did everything within its power to make Depp, and all of his closest advisors, fully aware of Depp’s financial condition,” the management agency stated, according to E! News.
In one telling 2009 exchange between TMG’s Joel Mandel and the actor, Depp was urged to “take it easy” on holiday spending and consider curbing his planned participation in an auction by the Dilinger Museum in Crown Point, IND.
He was also advised to set up a meeting to “look realistically at income and expenses and to work together on how to make sure that these are back in balance.”
Depp seemed to be more than willing to be accommodating, but said he could only do so much.
i am doing my very best on holiday spending, but there is only so much i can do, as i need to give my kiddies and famille as good a Christmas as possible, obviously within reason… forget the dillinger auction. don’t need it.”
The emails also reveal the startling cash flow Depp was working with.
He said he expected to make $20 million from filming “The Tourist” with Angelina Jolie, $35 million for his role in “Pirates of the Caribbean 4” and another $20 million for his role in the flop “Dark Shadows.”
“i hope that by the amount that will be coming in from work in the coming year and also from back end proceeds, etc., will put everything straight,” he wrote.
“what else can i do??? you want me to sell same art??? i will. you want me to sell something else??? sure… what??? boat is going to be chartered at new years and sony will then charter it for the TOURIST shoot in venice. other than that, i got bikes, cars, property, books, paintings and some semblance of a soul left, where would you like me to start???”
Depp also alluded to the fact that his movie “The Rum Diary” set him back financially. It bombed at the box office.
“i don’t like being in this situation, but there wasn’t a whole lot of choice, as THE RUM DIARY was a sacrifice we knew would be happening and the last proper paycheck was PUBLIC ENEMIES,” he said.
In another instance, Joel informs Depp’s sister, Christi Dembrowski, that the actor was overdrawn by almost $4 million overdrawn. He asked her to get “Johnny’s signature to secure a $6 million loan” to tide the actor over.
“If TMG was trying to hide Depp’s finances to cover-up their alleged misconduct, they would not have repeatedly advised Depp’s long-term personal lawyer, Jake Bloom, and his longtime agent, Tracey Jacobs, regarding the situation,” the agency stated.