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First Look at Johnny Depp as War Photographer W. Eugene Smith in ‘Minamata’

Bill Nighy has joined the cast of “Minamata,” Andrew Levitas’ movie about W. Eugene Smith and the first image of Johnny Depp as the celebrated war photographer has been released.

Minami (“Vision), Hiroyuki Sanada (“Westworld”), Tadanobu Asano (“Midway”), Ryo Kase (“Letters from Iwo Jima”) and Jun Kunimura (“ Midway”) have also all joined the cast as production gets underway. The shoot will take in Japan, Serbia, and Montenegro.

The film is based on Aileen Mioko Smith and W. Eugene Smith’s book, “Minamata,” which has been adapted by David K. Kessler (“A Hard Day’s Day”). Billed as a redemptive thriller, it follows Smith as he takes on a powerful corporation responsible for poisoning the people of Minamata, Japan, in 1971.

“I am thrilled to be working with such a talented and dedicated team on the story behind one of the most devastating and relatively unknown catastrophes of the past 100 years,” Levitas said. “Every one of the cast and crew is determined to make the people of Minamata’s voices heard as we begin shooting this film.”

HanWay Films is handling international sales and distribution on “Minamata,” which was developed by Depp’s Infinitum Nihil banner. The star is a producer on the project alongside Infinitum Nihil’s Sam Sarkar. Levitas under his Metalwork Pictures banner, and Gabrielle Tana (“The White Crow”) are the other producers.

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