SAN SEBASTIAN Film Festival has raised eyebrows by choosing to honour Johnny Depp by giving him the highly coveted Donostia Award.
The festival, which takes place from September 17-25, said yesterday that the controversial A-Lister would receive its highest accolade next month.
Organisers described the American as ‘one of contemporary cinema’s most talented and versatile actors’ and will pay tribute to the star at a ceremony in the city on September 22.
Depp was at the European festival last year to present Crock of Gold: A Few Rounds with Shane McGowan. He also made a fleeting appearance at the Spanish fest in 1998 with Terry Gilliam.
Previous winners of the top award include Ethan Hawke, Sigourney Weaver, Judy Dench, Penelope Cruz and Viggo Mortensen.
Last year Depp was at the centre of a highly publicised libel lawsuit in the UK against the Sun after the paper accused him of being a ‘wife beater’ while married to actress Amber Heard.
The court found that 12 of the 14 incidents of violence mentioned that involved the 58-year-old actor were ‘substantially true’.
Depp, best known for movies including the Pirates franchise, Charlie And The Chocolate Factory and Edward Scissorhands, had his appeal to overturn the verdict rejected by the Court of Appeal earlier this year in March.