Brian Cox backtracks on his controversial Johnny Depp comments

Pirates of the Caribbean

By nature, Brian Cox appears to be a very curmudgeonly man, but the veteran character actor has walked back on his words slightly after an excerpt from his memoirs drew the ire of Johnny Depp’s large and vocal fanbase.

The grizzled Scotsman ran through a list of major properties he’d been offered or turned down over the years, ranging from Game of Thrones to Harry F*cking Potter (his words, not ours). Among them was the role of Governor Swann in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, which ended up being played by Jonathan Pryce.

During his tirade, the 75-year-old blasted Johnny Depp in particular for being overrated, noting that he had no interest in putting on a powdered wig to act as a sideshow to the eccentric Captain Jack Sparrow. However, Cox offered a rebuttal of sorts during an interview with Yahoo!, where he sought to dampen the flames of fury.

“What certain people accused me of was my lack of respect, and I really do not disrespect anybody involved in this profession because I know how difficult it is. Now, I may have reservations about their talent, but I certainly don’t disrespect them. And my reservations about Johnny Depp are minimal — absolutely minimal. You know, I do think he’s sometimes overblown, but I actually think he’s also done some considerable work. Some of his work has really been extraordinarily good.”

In keeping with his grumpy old man persona, Cox did manage to slip in “I may have reservations about their talent” while trying not to actively dunk on his peers, so he’s hardly reversing his original stance.

The internet is awash with podcasts these days, and part of us is thinking that somebody should make the X-Men star an offer to sit in front of a microphone and rant about whatever takes his fancy because it would definitely be worth tuning in for.