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Johnny Depp's King Louis XV movie: everything we know about La Favorite

Johnny Depp arriving at the Maria Cristina Hotel for the San Sebastian Film Festival in September 2020.
Johnny Depp will star as King Louis XV in La Favorite. (Image credit: Carlos Alvarez/ GC Images via Getty)

La Favorite is Johnny Depp's first movie since his defamation trial with ex-wife Amber Heard.

La Favorite, which has been licensed by Netflix in France will see Depp taking on the role of King Louis XV in his first major acting role since he portrayed war photographer W. Eugene Smith in the 2020 drama, Minamata.

We don't know too much about the film's plot right now, but we do know that filming is due to take place over three months at locations throughout France (including the Versailles Palace) this summer.

Here's everything we know about La Favorite right now...

La Favorite release date

A release date for La Favorite has not been confirmed just yet, but with filming taking place in summer 2022, a 2023 release date in French theaters looks likely.

All we know at present (per Variety (opens in new tab)) is that Netflix has only purchased the rights to stream the film in France after La Favorite completes the country's 15-month theatrical window. The film is not being classed as a Netflix original

Whether this means the film will stream on Netflix in other parts of the world remains to be seen. But it would seem likely it will be available on a streaming service in the US and UK in the future.

La Favorite cast 

Only two names have been connected to the project so far. As we've already mentioned, Johnny Depp will be taking on the role of King Louis XV; Bloomberg reported that this is Depp's first time acting in French.

Elsewhere, Johnny Depp was briefly rumored to be considering returning to the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise (opens in new tab), although a representative for the actor has quashed these rumors.

French actress and filmmaker Maïwenn is set to star opposite Depp as Jeanne du Barry, who in real life was a French countess who became Louis's last mistress.

According to the film's IMDB page, (opens in new tab) Noémie Lvovsky and Pierre Richard are also attached to the project.

La Favorite plot

As we've already mentioned, there isn't much detail out there about the film right now.

The real Louis XV reigned for 59 years, the second-longest reign after his great grandfather, Louis XIV's impressive 72-year reign. Despite being nicknamed the beloved, he died a very unpopular monarch who has been marred by accusations of corruption. Upon his death in 1774, his grandson Louis XVI inherited a kingdom in dire need of reform, a state of affairs that led up to the French Revolution.

Given Maïwenn is playing Louis XV's third mistress, Jeanne du Barry, it's likely that the film focuses on the latter years of Louis' life, as Jeanne only came into his life after the death of Madame de Pompadour.

Who is directing La Favorite?

Maïwenn isn't just set to star, as the French filmmaker and actress is also serving as La Favorite's director.

Maïwenn (also known as Maïwenn Le Besco) has helmed critically acclaimed films. She received the Jury Prize at Cannes Film Festival for her 2011 crime drama, Polisse and was nominated for the Palme d'Or at Cannes in 2015 for Mon Roi

Martin Shore
Martin Shore

Martin is a Staff Writer with WhatToWatch.com, where he produces a variety of articles focused on the latest and greatest films and TV shows. 

Some of his favorite shows are What We Do In The Shadows, Bridgerton, Gangs of London, The Witcher, Doctor Who, and Ghosts. When he’s not watching TV or at the movies, Martin’s probably still in front of a screen playing the latest video games, reading, or watching the NFL.