'brilliant actor' | 

Pogues singer Shane MacGowan pens emotional tribute to 'brother' Johnny Depp

'F**k the begrudgers,' Shane writes.

Johnny Depp is good friend to Shane and Victoria (Photo: Steve Humphreys)

Esther McCarthy

Shane MacGowan has penned a tribute to actor Johnny Depp in which he describes him as like a brother and adds: “F**k the begrudgers”.

The letter, shared by MacGowan on his Instagram account, came as Depp hosted a premiere of Crock of Gold: A Few Rounds with Shane MacGowan, which he produced and appears in.

Depp has been dogged by controversy in recent years amid on ongoing legal battle with ex-wife Amber Heard, who has accused him of domestic abuse. He has denied the allegations.

“Hi Johnny, I often think you are the brother me and Vic (wife Victoria Mary Clarke) never had! Don’t even bother with people slagging you or lying about you,” wrote MacGowan.

“You’re a brilliant actor and a great musician and you’ve got a huge fan base who all love you and includes me and everyone I know.

“So keep on doing what you’re doing. People talking to me always ask about you and I say I can’t talk about you except I’m pretty sure you’re happy and to use a rock ’n’ roll cliché, f**k the begrudgers.”

Last year, the Pirates Of The Caribbean star lost a blockbuster libel trial against The Sun newspaper, with a London judge finding that an April 2018 column calling him a “wife beater” was “substantially true”.

The judge ruled Depp assaulted ex-wife Amber Heard, 35, on a dozen occasions and put the actress in “fear for her life” three times.

Depp was later refused permission to appeal against the decision.

Days after the ruling in November, Depp announced he had been asked by Warner Brothers to resign from his role in the Harry Potter spin-off franchise Fantastic Beasts.

Depp presented the MacGowan documentary at Karlovy Vary film festival, where he is special guest this weekend.

Crock of Gold was played at the San Sebastian Film Festival and won the special jury prize.

Pogues singer Shane McGowan and his wife Victoria Mary Clarke

The film looked at the life of the hard-living singer and poet from his childhood years until today.

Big-name contributors include Johnny Depp, Bono, Nick Cave, Bobby Gillespie, Elvis Costello and Gerry Adams.

"Knowing Shane for 30 years, I am honoured to be producing the definitive film on both my friend and one of the most important artists and beloved poets of the 20th century," Depp said about the biopic last year.

The documentary includes unseen footage from the early days of MacGowan's life and detaisl his heartbreak following the death of Kirsty MacColl, with whom he performed on Fairytale of New York.

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