Amber Heard Joins ‘Snow White’ Live Action Controversy Star Rachel Zegler

in Disney, Entertainment

Credit: Edited by Inside the Magic

Hollywood has been constantly changing since its inception. The way that stars, from actors to producers to directors, have been treated has also been in a massive flux. At one point, anyone in the business was untouchable, even if they did something wrong; now, we have moved into an era where celebrities are no longer untouchable. In fact, at times, they are criticized and canceled with such extreme ferocity from the media and fans, that it tends to move in an “over-the-top” direction.

Cancel culture in media with a phone and picket sign saying Get Woke Go Broke, Mickey mouse to left, Disney logo in background
Credit: Disney / Inside the Magic

Back in 2017, the hashtag #MeToo arose on social media and quickly dominated news feeds. The Me Too movement begins many years before that, however, in 2006. The phrase “Me Too” was initially used in this context on social media in 2006, on Myspace, by sexual assault survivor and activist Tarana Burke.

If you do not know Taran Burke, Women’s History describes her journey perfectly: “In 1996, Burke was working as the director of a youth camp when she encountered a young woman that would have a profound effect on her. After holding an all-girl bonding session at the camp, a young woman asked to speak with Burke privately about experiencing sexual abuse. Although Burke was unable to respond thoroughly in the moment, this encounter would become the foundation for the ‘me too’ Movement she created a decade later.

This created the foundation of the Me Too movement, a movement for those who have experienced sexual abuse, sexual harassment, and rape culture, to finally speak up and not fear the ones who had been doing this to them and silencing them.

Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow Pirates of the Caribbean
Credit: Disney

The movement would take viral steam in 2017 after film producer Harvey Weinstein was accused of sexually abusing over 80 women in the film industry. Since then, we have seen even the largest moguls, such as Kevin Spacey, fall. Some who were proven innocent, like Johnny Depp, were still cast away from Hollywood (Depp lost his role as Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean) just due to the allegations.

What did this all prove? People are not willing to let any abusive action slide by.

This was a fantastic movement within the realm of Hollywood, as celebrities now have their actions have consequences.

That being said, cancel culture has taken on a life of its own. Flash forward to 2023, and your opinion on a movie plot can have you desecrated by every media headline, just because the general public does not like your opinion. It no longer matters or revolves around action, as opinions now control the internet.

Ariel (Halle Bailey) resting on jellyfish and talking to Sebastian
Credit: Disney

We have seen this when it comes to Disney in a large way.

Starting nearly a decade ago, The Walt Disney Company embarked on a mission to remake all of its classic animated films, giving them a live-action spin. We’ve seen countless classic Disney films get remade, some with stunning visual effects and upgrades, like The Lion King (2019), The Jungle Book (2016), and Cinderella (2015), to name a few. Peter Pan & Wendy, the most recent “live-action” adaptation, was released earlier this year on Disney+. Disney also attempted to capitalize on its classic Haunted Mansion attraction for the second time with 2023’s Haunted Mansion.

We have also seen films like Beauty and the Beast starring Harry Potter star Emma Watson, and Pirates of the Caribbean, starring Johnny Depp, break records at the box office and breathe new life into an old story.

When The Little Mermaid came out, Halle Bailey was canceled by some, and the film entirely way also boycotted by a group of those same people just due to the color of her skin. Disney has been accused of being too “woke” as of late, due to the fact that they have expanded their diversity initiative, in attempts to make their entertainment space more inclusive.

We even saw one school teacher get investigated after showing Strange World, an animated movie on Dinsey+ which has an openly gay character. Time and time again, we have been hearing parents note that this is not something that Disney should be teaching their kids, with some parents not allowing their children to watch anything Disney at all in fear that it will corrupt their minds.

Evil Queen as an Old Crone giving Snow White the poisoned apple
Credit: Disney

Disney’s most recent Snow White live-action film has also caused massive chaos after casting Rachel Zegler. 

Rachel Zegler’s career began to soar after her breakthrough role as Maria in Steven Spielberg’s highly anticipated remake of West Side Story (2021). This role catapulted her into the spotlight and garnered critical acclaim for her performance, showcasing her remarkable singing and acting abilities.

As everyone now knows, Zegler will play the role of Snow White alongside Gal Gadot (Evil Queen) in a live-action adaptation of the film, but the movie– and the actress herself– have come under fire over the last several months due to comments and changes that Disney has reportedly made to the original animated version.

Rachel’s cancelation story comes from an archived interview: “I just mean it’s not 1937 anymore, Zegler said in a previous interview. “She’s not going to be saved by the prince and she’s not going to be dreaming about true love,” Zegler noted. “She’s dreaming about becoming the leader she knows she can be and the leader that her late father told her that she could be if she was fearless, fair, brave and true.” “It’s just a really incredible story for young people everywhere to see themselves in,” she added.

snow-white-seven-dwarfs-dancing
Credit: Disney

There are two main instances that caused fans outrage with the upcoming film. Firstly, there will be no dwarfs in the film, but seven magical creatures, which deviate from the iconic story that Walt Disney himself created on screen. Many have not understood why the characters were removed, with a point being made that this is depriving little people with dwarfism the opportunity to gain a role in a major feature film. Regardless, it entirely changed the animated title of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs which was created in 1937 by Walt Disney — and many were not too happy with that.

The second comes from an interview where Zegler and Gadot say that Snow White will not have a prince charming, and there is no one who needs to save her, which you can tell from the quote above. In this story, Snow White has a love story, with a man named Jonathan (Andrew Burnap), and not the iconic Prince Charming. It is rumored that Jonathan has less than five minutes of screen time in the film.

Rachel Zegler pretending to be Snow White in front of a poster of the classic animated princess
Credit: Rachel Zegler, Twitter

Following this came a slew of TikToks and outrage from fans who were not happy with Disney’s direction of the film, as well as upset that Zegler supposedly had such a problem with the original depiction of Snow White. Many women believed that it was reverse feminism to say that it is “weak” or “wrong” for a woman to not enjoy the idea of having that fairy tale ending with a prince charming, and that cooking, cleaning, and caretaking is less than a leader.

Zegler’s spot in the film has been questioned by many, as there have been reports of Disney firing the actor entirely, as Paddington 3 did. In Paddington‘s case, however, that was due to availability conflicts.

Now, another marked Hollywood figure is being lumped in the same category as Zegler.

Amber Heard (Aquaman) is now being categorised alongside Zegler in terms of being blacklisted from Hollywood.

Johnny Depp recently sued his ex-wife, Amber Heard, for defamation after she wrote an op-ed for The Washington Post, where she referred to herself as a “public figure representing domestic abuse.” Ms. Heard countersued Mr. Depp, claiming that he “defamed her when his former lawyer released statements saying her allegations of abuse were a hoax.”

Amber Heard as Mera (left) gazing at Jason Momoa as Arthur Curry (right) in 'Aquaman'
Credit: Warner Bros.

After six weeks of many witnesses taking the stand, including Johnny Depp, Amber Heard, and Depp’s ex, Kate Moss, on Wednesday, June 1, the jury came back with a verdict.

The jury found Ms. Heard defamed Mr. Depp by publicly accusing him of domestic abuse. The jury found that Mr. Depp proved Ms. Heard lied about her allegations.

If you haven’t been following the ongoing Johnny Depp vs. Amber Heard case, in November 2020, Hollywood actor Depp lost his libel lawsuit against U.K. News Group Newspaper publication, The Sun, for their report that he had allegedly engaged in domestic violence — including a reported “hostage” situation during a Pirates of the Caribbean shoot in Australia — against the Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom (2023) actress on multiple occasions.

Amber Heard was reported to have put her own poop in Johnny Depp’s bed, and many accused her of having fake “crocodile tears” while on the stand. After her false allegations caused Depp to lose multiple roles, including Jack Sparrow in Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, she was shunned by Hollywood.

A bombshell report in Variety recently which details apparent attempts by star Jason Momoa to get Amber Heard fired from the DC sequel.

Amber Heard as Mera in Aquaman
Credit: DC Studios

According to the report, on the same day that the trailer for Aquaman and the Lost Kingdom dropped, a number of Redditers paid to obtain documents from the Johnny Depp-Heard defamation trial, and then published them online. Among those notes are descriptions, apparently scribbled on a legal pad by Heard’s therapist, of Momoa appearing drunk on set, dressed as Depp, as the actor apparently tried to get Heard fired.

The report goes on to say that Heard was, in fact, almost fired as Mera after the release of 2018’s Aquaman, but not because of the public drama with Depp. According to Variety, it was due to a lack of chemistry with Momoa, which is similar to testimony that Heard’s agent gave during the defamation trial.

Now, the publication SK Pop is stating, “This battle caused a massive uproar in Hollywood, and now there are rumors that she might not get to be in any more of those blockbuster movies that we all love to watch. Heard’s career is facing a storm because of this publicized spat with Johnny Depp.

The outlet continues, “People in Hollywood are talking about her getting “blacklisted,” which means she might not be chosen to play the big, important roles in major Hollywood projects. Much like Rachel Zegler, Amber Heard has also found herself in hot water within the Hollywood sphere due to her high-profile legal battle with Johnny Depp.

Amber Heard as Mera (L) and Jason Momoa as Aquaman (R) in 'Aquaman'
Credit: Warner Bros.

The fallout from her legal battles has led to whispers and speculations about her being blacklisted from significant Hollywood projects.”

The reasoning here points at her minimized role in Aquaman 2 following the trial, as well as the fact that she was in discussions to join prominent Hollywood productions, including Matt Reeves’ The Batman Part Two, but these talks abruptly came to a halt as her ties to Warner Bros. weakened due to her legal battle with Johnny Depp.

Moreover, a planned horror project with Blumhouse Productions has been scrapped.

Overall, it seems that those two will have a rocky road back to the top of Hollywood. Luckily for Zegler, however, her Hunger Games debut in The Hunger Games: The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes has been receiving a lot of praise.

Do you think both actors are blacklisted from Hollywood?

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