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14 September 2005   Articles No Comments

JOHNNY DEPP might be the most famous man who doesn’t want to be famous. He has been twice nominated for Oscars and once voted the “Sexiest Man Alive” – but awards ceremonies scare him and Hollywood just annoys him – By Mark Sage, Daily Post.

But after his performances in Pirates of the Caribbean and Finding Neverland, and his latest outing as Willy Wonka in Roald Dahl’s Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, the 42-year-old is suddenly very hot property in Hollywood.

It’s not a position in which he is particularly comfortable.

“Very selfishly and simplistically I like keeping a distance from Hollywood and the social expectations there, because I’m not good at it,” he says..

“I find great comfort in having that distance, because I don’t have that pressure or responsibility of knowing who is the top dog this week and who is out from last week. I don’t know who anybody is, and I really like that.”

Instead, Johnny spends six months a year in Los Angeles and the other six at his home on the French Riviera. It is an idyllic family life with his children Lily Rose Melody, six, three-year-old Jack, and their mother, model and actress Vanessa Paradis, 32.

12 September 2005   Articles No Comments

Frenzied photographers formed a human wall around Johnny Depp as the actor arrived for a film festival press conference at the Sutton Place Hotel yesterday, bathing him in an eerie glow of flashing lights. So intent were they on grabbing his image, as probably the most in-demand celebrity amongst the many currently visiting Toronto, it’s likely none of them stopped to ponder which Johnny Depp they were actually getting – by Peter Howell of The Star.com

Would it be the Michael Jackson send-up of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, the summer hit that is maintaining its momentum straight into the fall?

Would it be Capt. Jack Sparrow, the Keith Richards caricature Depp played in the summer ’03 smash Pirates of the Caribbean, and whom he is revisiting during the current simultaneous shoots for the Pirates 2 and Pirate 3 sequels?

Would it be his loving imitation of his friend Dr. Hunter S. Thompson, the late gonzo journalist whom he portrayed in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, and whom he recently eulogized by sending his ashes flying from a cannon?

Or would Depp be like any of the characters he has played for his director friend Tim Burton, which include the title-role misfits of Edward Scissorhands and Ed Wood, the inquiring Constable Ichabod Crane of Sleepy Hollow or the nerdy groom Victor of Tim Burton’s Corpse Bride, the stop-motion romance chiller that premiered last night at the Elgin Theatre?

The simple answer might be “all of the above,” since Depp seems to have long ago surrendered his own personality to whatever muse calls his name.

Copyright Toronto Star Newspapers Limited. All rights reserved.

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1 September 2005   Articles No Comments

Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka WITH his talent and looks, he would be forgiven for being loud and obnoxious. – By Peter Mitchell – September 01, 2005.

Women love him and men have a right to be jealous of him. But on a steamy afternoon at the Atlantis Resort in The Bahamas, Johnny Depp is as gentle and sheepish as a sober nerd at a school formal. Deeply tanned from six months in the sun, Depp has taken a short break from shooting the Pirates Of The Caribbean sequels near the resort to chat about Charlie And The Chocolate Factory. He speaks in whispers, is polite and intelligent and sweet.

It was not always the way, he says. As a kid his mother had a special name for him.

“She used the term hellion,” laughs Depp. “I wasn’t obnoxious but I was curious. There were a lot of practical jokes. I got on her nerves basically. I pissed her off quite frequently.”

Depp is a Hollywood chameleon, switching from dirty Jack Sparrow to tidy playwright James Barrie in Finding Neverland, Constable Ichabod Crane in Sleepy Hollow to Edward Scissorhands.

Now he is Willy Wonka, the weird chocolate mogul in Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, the remake of the Roald Dahl classic.

Copyright 2005 News Limited.

This is an article excerpt. To view the article in full, please visit the entertainment.news.com.au website.

29 August 2005   Articles No Comments

By Helen Barlow – Kids love him, teens think he’s cool, girls of all ages drool over his looks and charm, while parents and grannies find him endearing. Having cleaned up his act to become a doting parent, he has won a new respectability, and now with his box office clout he can make whatever movie he pleases.

But still the question remains: underneath all the disguises just who is the real Johnny Depp? In movies he has worked with the most creative and eccentric of directors and actors. His debut was in Cry-Baby with John Waters and then came Edward Scissorhands. His excursion into the mainstream as a regular accountant chasing the clock in Nick of Time, directed by the highly respected John Badham, flopped at the box office, and he looked most sexy when he reluctantly played a latter-day Rudolph Valentino in Don Juan DeMarco, which he only did to work with Marlon Brando.

Brando, another adventurer who also became his friend, came out of retirement to feature in the only film Depp would ever direct, The Brave, which played only in a couple of tiny Parisian cinemas.

“I don’t think you can spend more than two minutes with Marlon Brando without walking away with an unforgettable experience and with an education,” he says. The Brave was hardly a gripping experience, though its native American theme showed that Depp was keen to explore his part-Cherokee roots.

He had appeared already in the Native American-themed Dead Man for his friend Jim Jarmusch, when (five years later) he teamed again with Lasse Hallstrom, his What’s Eating Gilbert Grape director, and played a gypsy musician in Chocolat.

He says it is the character closest to himself he has ever played.

Copyright 2005 News Limited.

This is an article excerpt. To view the article in full, please visit the news.com.au website.

29 August 2005   Articles No Comments

He is so talented and good-looking, he would be forgiven for being loud and obnoxious.

Women love him and men have a right to be jealous.

Johnny Depp could have a supermodel on his arm any day of the week, but here he is on a recent sweaty afternoon at the Atlantis Resort in The Bahamas as gentle and sheepish as a sober nerd at a school formal.

Depp, deeply suntanned from six months in the tropical sun, has taken a short break from shooting the Pirates of the Caribbean sequels nearby the resort to stop by and chat about his latest film, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.

He speaks in whispers, is polite and intelligent and is so sweet you want to give him a hug, or maybe a clip across the ear and tell him not to be so well-behaved.

It was not always the way, he says.

As a kid his mother had a special name for him.

“She used the term ‘hellion’,” Depp, on this day looking part scallywag pirate and part Parisian artist, laughs, albeit quietly, as he explains.

“I wasn’t obnoxious or precocious but I was curious. There were a lot of practical jokes. I got on her nerves basically. I pissed her off quite frequently.”

Depp looks part pirate because he has just walked off the Pirates of the Caribbean set.

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3 August 2005   Articles No Comments

August 2, 2005 – The Hollywood Reporter – Stephen Galloway – He was one of the more curious and eccentric characters in a country replete with them. A sybarite whose lavish lifestyle left him dead from syphilis in 1680 at age 33, a profligate whose excesses would draw the wrath of no less a moralist than Samuel Johnson a century later. He was John Wilmot, the second Earl of Rochester who’s ability to offend has continued unabated for four centuries…

In 1992, Jeffreys began to turn Rochester’s life into “The Libertine,” a play that would make its debut at Chicago’s Steppenwolf Theatre two years later. Another two years would follow before the work was optioned by Mr. Mudd, the production company set up by actor John Malkovich and his business partners, Russell Smith and Lianne Halfon (named after Malkovich’s driver on 1984’s “The Killing Fields”).

In all, it has taken a decade for Malkovich, Smith and Halfon to bring “Libertine” to the screen, with the film set for a September release through Miramax. During the 10 years since Malkovich and Smith first became involved (Malkovich played Rochester onstage in Chicago), the project found financing and lost it, landed Johnny Depp and Nicole Kidman, only to lose them, landed Depp again and drew within weeks of principal photography, only to have the U.K. unexpectedly change its tax laws, essentially obliterating a large portion of the movie’s financing.

Indeed, “Libertine” had the kind of early luck that producers dream about. More funding fell into place, coming largely from the U.K.’s Granada Films. The project was officially unveiled at the 1998 Festival de Cannes, with a start date planned for the fall.

Which is precisely when things began to go wrong. First, Depp announced that he was dropping out for personal reasons. “Johnny was about to become a father,” Jeffreys says. “He wanted to be around when the child was born. Once you lose that window for doing the movie, you go right back to the start…”

28 July 2005   Articles No Comments

JOHNNY Depp is smiling. It’s a curious kind of half-smile that makes his face look even more boyish than usual. Depp was 42 a couple of weeks ago but still looks remarkably youthful – by Andy Dougan. Evening Times Online.

The immaculately trimmed beard and the dark-rimmed spectacles do nothing to make him look any older. He has just mentioned how therapeutic it is “to make an ass of yourself and be paid for it” and it is that childlike emotional availability that makes Depp the best in the business.

Ironically, despite having been recognised as the best actor of his generation for some time, Depp has only recently become a major box office star.

The runaway success of the first Pirates Of The Caribbean film made him a bankable property – the two sequels he is currently filming back to back won’t hurt either – and Charlie And The Chocolate Factory has also been a runaway hit.

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23 July 2005   Articles No Comments

23/07/2005 – Ireland On-Line – Pirates of the Caribbean star Johnny Depp has urged lovers to respect one and other if they want a long and happy relationship.

The actor has been with actress Vanessa Paradis for eight years and insists their relationship is just as special now as when they first met.

He says: “Trust, have fun and respect for one another. Respect for one another’s privacy. Respect for what the other person does in their chosen profession. And obviously a whole lot of love.

“Vanessa was like a bolt of lightning. She has success on her own terms and when we met it wasn’t like she was anything other than this sweet, cool, funny girl.

“I’d never experienced anything like that before. She gave me these two beautiful kids.”

© Thomas Crosbie Media, 2005.

22 July 2005   Articles No Comments

With Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Johnny Depp proves again he’s the Brando of his generation – BRIAN D. JOHNSON – July 22, 2005.

Depp is Hollywood’s rebel angel. And he’s lived a renegade life. Growing up in Florida, he dropped out of high school at 15, and became a garage-band rocker. After moving to Los Angeles and making his name as an actor, he turned into one of Hollywood’s legendary bad boys — linked to the drug-overdose death of River Phoenix in 1993, arrested for wrecking a Manhattan hotel room the following year, and scrapping with paparazzi outside a London restaurant in 1999. Since then, he’s settled down with singer-actress Vanessa Paradis in her native France and fathered two children.

It’s ironic that the kid who dropped out of school to do drugs and join the rock ‘n’ roll circus should stumble into A-list respectability by mimicking a heroin-chic Rolling Stone in a Disney movie. It was a risky choice, and one that initially alarmed his producers. But with his outrageous Keith Richards routine in Pirates of the Caribbean, Depp struck box-office gold.

Copyright by Rogers Media Inc.

This is an article excerpt. To view the entire article, please visit the Macleans website.

14 July 2005   Articles No Comments

There was a definite film fraternity on the chocolate carpet Sunday in Hollywood at the premiere of Tim Burton’s “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” By Elizabeth Snead and Joel Stratte-McClure Article Published: Thursday, July 14, 2005.

:: Young actor Freddie Highmore (Charlie) speaks on fellow actor Johnny Depp (Willy Wonka) ::

…So has Johnny given any acting or life advice? “Not in so many words, but one learns by watching,” said the freckle-faced British lad. “What impresses me the most is that Johnny is just so completely normal,” says Freddie. “Even though he’s a famous actor, he’s just a regular person.”