The Internet Loves Johnny Depp’s Donald Trump Movie
When it comes to the art of mocking billionaire real estate mogul Donald Trump, the key ingredients seem to include a bad wig, heavy makeup, and the element of surprise.
Comedy website Funny or Die dropped a surprise parody biopic of the GOP presidential frontrunner on the Internet yesterday and the video quickly racked up millions of views on its way to becoming a viral hit. The 50-minute video, called “Funny or Die Presents Donald Trump’s The Art of the Deal: The Movie,” stars A-list actor Johnny Depp as Trump, complete with a fake version of the former reality television star’s famous comb-over, and it also features cameos from a cavalcade of comedic stars, from Patton Oswalt to Henry Winkler and Michaela Watkins, who portrays Trump’s first wife, Ivana Trump.
Funny or Die told the New York Times that the video parody had been viewed more than 10 million times across various platforms on its first day online, which followed months of people associated with the video keeping its production a secret from the general public before releasing it in time to coincide with Trump’s New Hampshire triumph. Adam McKay, the site’s co-founder and director of Oscar-nominated film The Big Short, also told the Times that the video’s release was preceded by months of secrecy “was a crazy, completely nuts idea that somehow we pulled off.”
Here is a trailer for the video, and the full parody can be found on the Funny or Die website:
The video’s absurd premise is that Trump himself wrote, directed, and starred in his own biopic based on his best-selling 1987 book, The Art of the Deal, only to prevent the film from ever seeing the light of day until Hollywood bigwig Ron Howard (playing himself) uncovered a copy at a yard sale.
The film itself finds Depp hamming it up as an unhinged version of 1980s Trump. He spoofs the billionaire’s infamous hubris as well as his book’s business advice with jokes about Trump’s “small loan of a million dollars” from his father and a plan to move the homeless into a Central Park South building to scare off rent-controlled tenants.
The Funny or Die video’s viral success is not quite as much of a surprise as the video was itself, considering how Trump has managed to become more divisive than ever as he bids for the White House. The video comes at a time when Trump’s presidential campaign is gaining steam after his first primary win, while months of jokes and snarky comments from his opponents on both sides of the political spectrum seem to have had little effect on his polling numbers, which raises doubt that a parody video will make any impact on Trump’s rise aside from inspiring quite a few laughs.
Fortune has reached out to Trump’s campaign for comment on the Funny or Die video and will update this post with any response.