Depp, dressed in character, delivered a creepy speech as Eddie Redmayne, Jude Law and Ezra Miller (in costume as Super Mario's Toadette) looked on in Hall H.
The Wizarding World returned to Hall H with a new trailer for Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald.
The panel featured many of the film's stars, including Johnny Depp, who plays Gellert Grindelwald. The star's personal life, with allegations of domestic violence, led to his continuation with the franchise becoming so controversial that J.K. Rowling issued a statement in December defending his involvement. The Warner Bros. Comic-Con preview is the first major appearance for Depp since the release of a widely read Rolling Stone profile that painted a detailed portrait of a troubled star.
For the Hall H presentation, Depp skipped the panel discussion, where panelists answered audience questions, and instead showed up at the end of the presentation dressed in character to deliver a creepy speech. In spite of fans voicing their concerns online about Depp's presence in the movie, the actor received applause and cheers from the Hall H crowd.
"The great gift of your applause is not for me but for yourselves," Depp said in his character's English accent, waving a wand over the audience. "Magic blooms only in rare souls. It is granted to those who live for higher purposes. What a world we would make for all of humanity. We, who live for freedom, for truth — the moment has come to rise up and take our rightful place in the world."
At the end of the speech, the lights flickered and then turned off, with Depp disappearing in the darkness, and the presentation was over.
Star Eddie Redmayne was also in attendance at the preview, joined by franchise newcomer Jude Law, making his Harry Potter debut as a young Albus Dumbledore.
In the teaser trailer released a few months ago, fans got a first look at the pre-Potter Hogwarts. The movie's first full-length trailer gives a better glimpse inside the magical school, opening with a scene between Dumbledore and a young Newt Scamander. The rest of the spot sees the professor recruiting his former student to try and take down Grindelwald, with the villain asking, "Do you think Dumbledore will mourn for you?"
Also returning for the Europe-set sequel are Katherine Waterston, Alison Sudol, Dan Fogler, Ezra Miller and Carmen Ejogo. Miller, who also plays DC's Flash, was cosplaying as Toadette from Super Mario Bros. on the panel. Newcomers Callum Turner, as Newt's brother, and Zoe Kravitz were also in Hall H.
The cast was asked what spells they would like to have on hand in real life, with the top answer being a spell that would impeach President Donald Trump. "Impeachius maximus," cried out Fogler. Meanwhile Miller said he would appreciate a spell that would "destroy the patriarchy."
In addition to the trailer, cast Q&A and Depp's performance, Warner Bros. released a new poster for the film.