After weeks of speculations and rumours, Warner Bros. officially confirmed that Hannibal star Mad Mikkelsen has officially replaced Johnny Depp to play the evil wizard Gellert Grindelwald in the Untitled Fantastic Beasts 3 movie.

Mads Mikkelsen
Mads Mikkelsen in Fantastic Beasts 3 movieMads Mikkelsen Official (@theofficialmads/Instagram)

As earlier reported, Johnny Depp steps down from the role of Gellert Grindelwald after being asked by Warner Bros. in the light of his libel case in the U.K. Following this, there were rumours as to who is going to play the role of Grindelwald. Multiple names surfaced in the beginning, including Colin Farrel, who had a significant role in Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

At first, Mads Mikkelsen dismissed the news that he is replacing Johnny Depp in the Fantastic Beasts 3 movie. While speaking with IGN, Casino Royale star denied the casting reports circulating after Depp departed from the franchise. The actor claimed back then that these are nothing but rumors.

"Oh, that is on the rumour basis as we speak. So I know as much as you do from the newspapers. So I'm waiting for that phone call."

Fantastic Beasts' fans will have no time imagining Mads Mikkelsen as Gellert Grindelwald in the forthcoming wizard movie. The 55-year-old Danish actor is known to play negative roles in films like Doctor Strange and a James Bond movie, Casino Royale.

Fantastic Beasts 3 details:

Filming of Fantastic Beasts 3 officially started on March 16, 2020, but the production had to shut down due to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic. After a long hiatus, the movie's production began in September, but it had to put again on hold after Johnny Depp's departure.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald
Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald reviewFantastic Beasts/Facebook

Following the COVID-19 pandemic and Johnny Depp's departure, the Untitled Fantastic Beasts 3 movie's release date was pushed back to July 15, 2022.

In the Fantastic Beasts franchise, Eddie Redmayne stars as wizard Newt Scamander, alongside Katherine Waterston, Dan Fogler, Jude Law, and Ezra Miller. Acclaimed director David Yates, who previously directed a couple of Harry Potter movies, is returning to direct the third film, based on a screenplay penned by Harry Potter author J.K. Rowling.