Dakota Johnson has mixed feelings when it comes to cancel culture. The 32-year-old actress has seen some of Hollywood's biggest names get taken down in the #MeToo era, like her former co-stars Johnny Depp, Armie Hammer and Shia LaBeouf. All three men have been accused of abuse, all three men have denied such claims and Johnson thinks it's "sad" all around.
"I never experienced that firsthand from any of those people," she tells The Hollywood Reporter. "I had an incredible time working with them; I feel sad for the loss of great artists. I feel sad for people needing help and perhaps not getting it in time. I feel sad for anyone who was harmed or hurt."
Johnson appeared alongside Depp in 2015's Black Mass, starred opposite LaBeouf in 2019's The Peanut Butter Falcon and was in Hammer's breakout film The Social Network in 2010. Depp has been accused of verbal and physical abuse by ex-wife, Amber Heard. LaBeouf is being sued by ex-girlfriend, FKA twigs, for abuse and sexual battery. Hammer has been accused of rape and emotional abuse by an alleged former partner.
"It's just really sad," Johnson explains. "I do believe that people can change. I want to believe in the power of a human being to change and evolve and get help and help other people. I think there's definitely a major overcorrection happening. But I do believe that there's a way for the pendulum to find the middle."
Johnson acknowledges the entertainment industry needed to be shaken up.
"The way that studios have been run up until now, and still now, is behind. It is such an antiquated mindset of what movies should be made, who should be in them, how much people should get paid, what equality and diversity look like. Sometimes the old school needs to be moved out for the new school to come in," she continues. "But, yeah, cancel culture is such a f****** downer. I hate that term."
LaBeouf and Hammer have kept very low profiles amid their scandals this year. Depp recently slammed cancel culture.
"It's so far out of hand now that I can promise you that no one is safe. Not one of you. No one out that door," the actor said at a public appearance last month.
"It takes one sentence and there's no more ground, the carpet has been pulled. It's not just me that this has happened to, it's happened to a lot of people," he continued, adding, "When there's an injustice, whether it's against you or someone you love, or someone you believe in — stand up, don't sit down."