The Johnny Depp film “Jeanne du Barry” from director and star (and producer and co-writer) Maïwenn will open in U.S. theaters on May 2 as part of a special engagement via Fathom Events and distributor Vertical.

The film will open exclusively in more than 500 U.S. theaters on May 2, 2024, with the possibility that the film could run longer than its “limited” engagement if it’s a success. The first big theatrical release of May 2024 is 20th Century’s “Kingdom of the Planet of the Apes,” which will command many more screens beginning May 10.

“Jeanne du Barry” was the opening night film at last year’s Cannes Film Festival and was a modest box office hit, grossing $13 million outside of the states. Vertical picked it up last June but has yet to release it here.

With more than 500 screens in tow, the movie will be the widest opening for Depp in the U.S. since “City of Lies,” which was released during the COVID pandemic on a max of 501 screens in March 2021. Before that, Depp’s widest opening was 2018’s “Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald,” the Harry Potter spinoff-franchise Depp was later fired from.

When “Jeanne du Barry” opened Cannes, it received a seven-minute standing ovation from the crowd in the Palais. But it was a controversial choice because of Depp’s continued career rehab following the highly publicized defamation trial between him and ex-wife Amber Heard. The film was also controversial because of a report against Maïwenn that accused her of assaulting a journalist, an accusation she later admitted to.

The film stars Depp as the French King Louis XV in a supporting role and primarily follows Maïwenn as Jeanne Vaubernier, an 18th-Century French working-class woman who became King Louis XV’s lover. The story is based on true events. It also stars French actors Benjamin Lavernhe, Pierre Richard, Melvil Poupaud, and Pascal Greggory.

The other co-writers are Teddy Lussi-Modeste and Nicolas Livecchi; the other producers are Pascal Caucheteux, and Grégoire Sorlat. Rounding out the below-the-line talent is cinematographer Laurent Dailland, editor Laure Gardette, production designer Angelo Zamparutti, costume designer Jürgen Doering, and composer Stephen Warbeck.

“‘Jeanne du Barry’ was a sensation at last year’s Cannes Film Festival and we are thrilled to partner with Fathom Events for the nationwide theatrical release of Maïwenn’s stunning piece of cinematic art showcasing Johnny Depp’s return to the big screen,” Vertical Partner Peter Jarowey said in a statement shared with IndieWire. “With Johnny’s huge appeal, we feel the Fathom/Vertical collaboration will allow moviegoers across the country the opportunity to experience the film which has already been a hit with audiences overseas.”

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