Articles from December 2004

FINDING NEVERLAND to be released on DVD on March 22, 2005!

Deppheads, here’s something to mark on those brand-new 2005 calendars: FINDING NEVERLAND will be released on DVD in Region 1 on March 22, 2005. List price for the DVD is $30, but expect good discounts for the opening week of release. The press release promises “extra scenes and commentary from director Marc Forster.” We hope that’s an edited and not a comprehensive description of the DVD extras–we want lots of goodies, please! Johnny’s fans in the UK will be able to enjoy the Region 2 DVD one week sooner: release date in the UK is March 14, 2005. Thanks to OhioPirate and Donna B. for the news!

A new gallery for THE DEPPARTMENT!

The Zone is happy to announce the opening of a new gallery! It’s called IN PROFILE, and it features 21 photos of Johnny from that distinctive angle.

To visit the new gallery, click on the GALLERIES button above, select THE DEPPARTMENT, and click on the last thumbnail. Thanks as always to Sleepy for sharing her fabulous photo collection, and to Mostly Harmless for putting the gallery on-line. Enjoy!

Happy 100th Anniversary to PETER PAN and J. M. Barrie!

Today, December 27, 2004, marks the 100th anniversary of the first performance of J. M. Barrie’s classic play, PETER PAN, at the Duke of York’s Theatre in London. One hundred years later, the characters of Peter and Wendy and the villainous Captain Hook live on as permanent parts of our collective memory. Many movie theatres in London are celebrating the occasion with free showings of FINDING NEVERLAND (thanks for the word, Gilbert’s Girl), while movie theaters in a dozen major cities in the U.S. are donating the proceeds of special FINDING NEVERLAND screenings today to the Peter Pan Children’s Fund, a group supporting children’s hospitals (thanks for the information, JD’s First Mate). J. M. Barrie, of course, donated the royalties from PETER PAN to the Great Ormond Street Hospital for Sick Children, a bequest that continues to this day.

This seems an appropriate time for the Zone to salute the memory of Sir James Matthew Barrie and express our appreciation for the gifts his imagination has given us . . . including now not only the original PETER PAN but this year’s marvelous FINDING NEVERLAND. Asked by Entertainment Tonight to comment on PETER PAN, Johnny Depp replied: “It’s a masterpiece of imagination. It’s one of those rare, perfect things in the world that will always be with us.” Now we can add Johnny’s performance as PETER PAN’s creator to that list of “rare, perfect things” that continue to delight us.

Nomination ballots for the 77th Academy Awards mailed today!

Deppheads, keep your fingers crossed: Nomination ballots for the 77th Academy Awards® were mailed today, Monday December 27, 2004, to the 5,808 voting members of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Completed ballots must be returned to the accountants, PricewaterhouseCoopers, by 5 p.m. on January 15, 2005 (yes, it does seem an awfully long way away) . . . . The official announcement of The 77th Academy Award® nominations will take place on Tuesday, January 25, 2005, at 8:30 a.m. EST, at the Academy’s Samuel Goldwyn Theater. My goodness, it takes those accountants quite a while to count those nominating ballots, doesn’t it? The Oscars themselves will be presented on Sunday evening, February 27, 2005, at the Kodak Theatre in Los Angeles, and will be televised by ABC. Thanks to DeepinDepp for the Oscar update. You can read the full story HERE.

The Zone sends its best wishes to Johnny Depp, Marc Forster, Kate Winslet, Freddie Highmore, David Magee, Jan Kaczmarek, and all the artists involved with the making of FINDING NEVERLAND. We hope the Academy members recognize and honor your outstanding work.

Merry Christmas to Johnny Depp fans everywhere!

The Zone extends happy holiday wishes to Johnny Depp and his family on Christmas Day, and to Depp fans everywhere. For fans who don’t celebrate Christmas, please accept our best wishes for a lovely, relaxing weekend. May you enjoy this precious time in the company of those you love most. Thanks to ibbi for the beautiful holiday card of Johnny; more samples of holiday art featuring Johnny Depp can be seen on our Pic Parties forum. Thanks to all the talented artists who shared their work with the Zone!

"He's an artist"–Jerry Bruckheimer talks about Johnny Depp and the PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN sequels

A little bit of news on the PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN sequels from executive producer Jerry Bruckheimer: according to a statement Bruckheimer gave to MTV, Geoffrey Rush has yet to sign on for a third POTC film. (The statement does imply that Rush has signed on for POTC 2, however.) Apparently Disney has not officially signed on for the third film, either–at least not where it counts, the bottom line. “We’re hoping to start shooting [the second and third movies] in March,” Bruckheimer told MTV, “but we’re waiting for a very big check from Disney.” Jerry did confirm that Johnny, Orlando Bloom, and Keira Knightley are all set to return for both sequels, but the stories about Keith Richards appearing as Jack Sparrow’s dad are “premature;” Richards has not signed yet. Thanks to emma for posting the story.

Endora posted a profile of Jerry Bruckheimer from the London Times–you can read the whole article HERE, thanks, Endora–which includes these reflections about Johnny’s legendary performance as Captain Jack Sparrow: “He’s an artist and you hire him because he’s an artist. You don’t hire Johnny Depp and try to put him in a box and say, ‘This is the performance you have to give me.’ It was an inspired performance, but it scared the studio to death when they saw it. My phone lit up like a Christmas tree after they saw the first day’s rushes. They said, ‘You’ve got to tone it down. It’s ridiculous.’ We said, ‘No, wait till you see how engaging it is’.” We’ve all seen how engaging Captain Jack Sparrow is, and we can’t wait for his return to the big screen!

LA Zoners can see the original PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN at the Hollywood El Capitan Theatre from January 13th through January 30th. Kazren reports there will be costume contests nightly; the opening night show starts at 7pm. Sounds like great fun for those in the area–thanks for the news, Kazren!

We're in blog heaven! Johnny Depp is the #1 most blogged-about actor in the world!

Since you are reading a Johnny Depp blog at this very moment, it should come as no surprise whatsoever that the Deppster ranked number one in entertainment-related discussion in blogs in 2004, according to a year-end analysis of blog content by Intelliseek’s BlogPulse.com portal. BusinessWire reports, “Intelliseek’s Blog Pulse tracks and analyzes more than 3.5 million blogs daily. Short for ‘weblogs,’ blogs are easily published web sites that serve as online diaries, journals, newsletters or sources of opinion, information and expertise.” Intelliseek’s CMO, Pete Blackshaw, notes that bloggers have an effect on the show-business climate by stimulating interest in the personality they discuss: “Early consumer ‘buzz’ plays a critical role in the entertainment industry, and it’s clear that bloggers are seeding and fueling the discussion of movies, personalities, music, imagery, books and other forms of entertainment.” Thanks, DeepinDepp, for posting the story on the News & Views forum.

The Zone’s Johnny Depp News Blog has been up and running on the home page since July 9, 2004, the day of the launch of the new site. We know no better way to keep our members apprised of the latest Depp news, and we are delighted to take part in making Johnny #1. We look forward to having more great news to post about Johnny in 2005!

BREAKING NEWS –FINDING NEVERLAND places third in BBC's "Film of the Year" poll

Congratulations are in order once again for Johnny Depp, Kate Winslet, Freddie Highmore, Marc Forster, and all who contributed to the feast for the imagination that is FINDING NEVERLAND. The results of the British Broadcasting Company’s poll for “Film of the Year” are in, and will be reported by Jonathan Ross on the UK television program “Film 2004” tonight, December 22nd, at 11:35 p.m. The blockbuster THE LORD OF THE RINGS: THE RETURN OF THE KING took first place, followed by ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND (so a double congratulations to the luminous Ms. Winslet). FINDING NEVERLAND placed third–a wonderful tribute for this warm-hearted and unforgettable film.

Rounding out the top ten were LOST IN TRANSLATION, HARRY POTTER AND THE PRISONER OF AZKABAN, SHAUN OF THE DEAD, HERO, THE INCREDIBLES, SPIDERMAN 2, and COLLATERAL. UK Zoners, set your VCRs! The Zone thanks Endora for the timely television reminder and DeepinDepp for posting the BBC story on the News & Views forum.

A first look at Victor, Johnny Depp's character in Tim Burton's animated feature CORPSE BRIDE!

The dark-haired big-eyed gent to the left is Victor, the character for whom Johnny Depp supplies the voice in Tim Burton’s stop-motion animated fantasy CORPSE BRIDE. The film is based on a 19th Century folktale in which a man mistakenly weds a corpse, much to the distress of his living, faithful fiancee. Helena Bonham Carter voices the Corpse Bride, with Emily Watson playing Victor’s beloved. Albert Finney and Christopher Lee also voice major roles in the film, directed by Tim Burton and Mike Johnson. CORPSE BRIDE is scheduled for release in the U.S. on September 23, 2005, and in the U.K. a month later, on October 21, 2005. We can’t wait to see more of Victor! Thanks to DeepinDepp and Bonnie for posting the news on the Zone. For a larger view of Victor and his fiancee, click HERE.

Johnny Depp nominated as Actor of the Year by London Critics' Circle

More accolades for Johnny Depp’s outstanding performance as J. M. Barrie in FINDING NEVERLAND–he has been nominated as Actor of the Year by the London Critics’ Circle Film Awards. FINDING NEVERLAND received four nominations from the London group: Actor of the Year for Johnny, Screenwriter of the Year for David Magee, British Newcomer of the Year for Freddie Highmore, and British Film of the Year for FINDING NEVERLAND. Co-star Kate Winslet received a nomination as British Actress of the Year for her starring role in ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND. Congratulations to all the nominees! The Zone thanks micdus and deppenpointe for posting the nominations on the News & Views forum.

Season 2 of 21 JUMP STREET to be released on DVD

Fans of Officer Tom Hanson will soon be able to enjoy more adventures of the late ’80s undercover cop: Stephen J. Cannell’s company, Anchor Bay, is releasing Season 2 of 21 JUMP STREET on DVD on March 8, 2005. The six-disc set will retail for $59.98, although Amazon is offering a pre-order price of $41.99. No word yet on what extras will be included. The release will be Region 1 only. The Zone thanks joni for bringing us the good news!

Yo ho! PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN sequels to cast Chow Yun Fat as a Chinese pirate?

The latest POTC casting rumor has Gore Verbinski flying to Hong Kong to approach renowned Chinese actor Chow Yun Fat about appearing in the POTC sequels. Chow Yun Fat is familiar to U.S. audiences for his starring roles in CROUCHING TIGER, HIDDEN DRAGON; ANNA AND THE KING; and BULLETPROOF MONK. The actor’s wife, Jasmin Chan Wui-nin, reports that Jerry Bruckheimer and Gore Verbinski first spoke to Chow’s management company in the U.S. two months ago; then, last week, director Verbinski flew to Hong Kong to discuss the screenplay with Chow. The POTC character is apparently inspired by a famous Chinese pirate named Cheung Po Tsai. Thanks to Hong Kong Zoner emosniw for breaking the casting news, and to Gilbert’s Girl for posting the followup story on the News & Views forum.

CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY to be released in IMAX!

Fans of Willy Wonka will be delighted to hear the news–CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY will hit the really big silver screen this summer! Warner Bros. Pictures and the IMAX Corporation have announced that CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY, “the highly anticipated film reuniting Tim Burton and Johnny Depp, [. . .] will be simultaneously released to IMAX and conventional 35mm theatres on July 15th, 2005.” Dan Fellman, the President of Domestic Distribution at Warner Bros. Pictures, notes that Warner Bros. has enjoyed “outstanding” results from releasing their major pictures on IMAX: “[We] offer audiences a uniquely immersive way to experience our blockbuster pictures. We look forward to working with IMAX on CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY and presenting Tim Burton’s next masterpiece in IMAX’s format.” Adds IMAX’s chairman, Greg Foster: “CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY is a magical story based on a renowned piece of literature from an imaginative filmmaker; it’s an ideal IMAX release that will appeal to [. . .] moviegoers of all ages.” Thanks to DeepinDepp for posting the story on the News & Views forum. You can read the full story HERE.

A new SECRET WINDOW gallery for the Zone!

Need a little more Mort in your life? We thought you might!

The Zone is happy to announce the addition of a new SECRET WINDOW gallery to our BY FILM section, to celebrate Johnny’s performance as Mort Rainey. To view the gallery, click on the GALLERIES button above this message, select BY FILM, and then click on SECRET WINDOW.

Thanks to Sleepy and Mostly Harmless for their work; the results are, as always, beautiful. Enjoy!

BREAKING NEWS–FINDING NEVERLAND earns 7 Critic's Choice Award nominations, including BEST ACTOR for Johnny Depp!

This morning the Broadcast Film Critics Association announced their nominations for the tenth annual Critic’s Choice Awards. FINDING NEVERLAND received seven nominations:

FINDING NEVERLAND, Best Picture

JOHNNY DEPP, Best Actor [But OF COURSE!]

KATE WINSLET, Best Supporting Actress

MARC FORSTER, Best Director

DAVID MAGEE, Best Screenplay

FREDDIE HIGHMORE, Best Young Actor

FINDING NEVERLAND, Best Family Film (live action)

Huzzahs and congratulations to all the nominees, and thanks to Gilbert’s Girl for posting the story on the News & Views forum. The Critic’s Choice Awards ceremony will be January 10th at the Wiltern Theater in Los Angeles, and it will be broadcast live in the U.S. on the WB television network.

Zoners have fond memories of last year’s Critic’s Choice Awards broadcast, when PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN won for Best Family Film (live action), and Jerry Bruckheimer summoned Johnny to the podium to accept the award with him. FINDING NEVERLAND is nominated in that category this year; if it wins, will Harvey Weinstein follow Jerry’s example? We hope to see several trips to the podium for members of the FINDING NEVERLAND ensemble. Awards? We love awards! Drinks all around . . . .

"Thank you for this fantastic surprise"–Johnny Depp reacts to his Golden Globe nomination for FINDING NEVERLAND

Johnny’s reaction to receiving a Golden Globe nomination as Best Actor in a Drama for his FINDING NEVERLAND role as J. M. Barrie, the playwright who wrote PETER PAN, was characteristically humble and modest. Johnny told ET Online: “I would like to express a huge ‘thank you’ to the members of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association for this fantastic surprise. I feel honored and privileged simply to be considered amongst such distinguished talent.” The Zone thanks peanut for sharing Johnny’s comment on the News & Views forum. We wish Johnny many more “fantastic surprises” like this one, and some shiny trophies for his mantel, too.

BREAKING NEWS–Johnny Depp and FINDING NEVERLAND receive Golden Globe nominations!

Congratulations to Johnny Depp, who received a Golden Globe nomination as Best Actor in a Drama for his portrayal of PETER PAN playwright J. M. Barrie in FINDING NEVERLAND! This is Johnny’s first Golden Globe nomination in the Drama category. His previous four nominations were in the comedy/musical division: EDWARD SCISSORHANDS (1990), BENNY & JOON (1993), ED WOOD (1994), and last year’s PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN (2003).

FINDING NEVERLAND received five Golden Globes nominations, a total exceeded only by SIDEWAYS with seven and THE AVIATOR with six. The film is nominated as Best Motion Picture–Drama, and Marc Forster received a nomination in the extremely competitive Best Director field. David Magee was nominated for Best Screenplay and Jan A.P. Kaczmarek for Best Score. Congratulations to all these worthy nominees! We wish them all the best possible luck when the Golden Globes are awarded on January 16, 2005.

Congratulations also to Kate Winslet–although her radiant performance in FINDING NEVERLAND was overlooked, she was nominated as Best Actress in a Musical or Comedy for her delightful work in ETERNAL SUNSHINE OF THE SPOTLESS MIND. Good luck, Kate! Discussing the Golden Globe nominations on THE TODAY SHOW this morning, Entertainment Weekly’s Dave Karger emphatically declared that Ms. Winslet should have received a Supporting Actress nomination for FINDING NEVERLAND as well. You can read the full list of Golden Globe nominations HERE.

The Zone thanks everyone who posted news about the Golden Globes, including MommaDeppLover, Gilbert’s Girl, Nicole Jacks, and nah. We look forward to hearing Johnny’s reaction to his nomination, and we hope FINDING NEVERLAND’s strong performance will encourage Miramax to give this fine movie the support it deserves.

Bring me that horizon: The tall ship Bounty to appear in PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 2!

Another link between Johnny Depp and his dear friend, the late Marlon Brando: the replica of the tall ship HMS Bounty which was used in the 1962 movie MUTINY ON THE BOUNTY, in which Brando starred as Fletcher Christian, will make its next movie appearance in PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 2. The Bounty has a film resume many actors would envy, and can currently be seen on screen in the movie SPONGEBOB SQUAREPANTS.

The Bounty will winter at the Pier in St. Petersburg, Florida, where she is due to arrive on Wednesday. While in port, the 169-foot ship will be refitted for her role in POTC 2. There’s no word yet on whether the Bounty will once again portray a ship of the Royal Navy, or if she will go against type and portray a pirate ship. Thanks to DeepinDepp for posting the story on the News&Views forum.

A GALLERY update–SLEEPY'S SPECIALS for December have arrived!

Depp fans everywhere, the delights of December are here! The Zone elves, Sleepy and Mostly Harmless, have brought us more beautiful pictures of Johnny to drool over. Yes, the monthly SLEEPY’S SPECIALS have been updated.

To view the gallery, click on the SLEEPY’S SPECIALS button above this story on the home page. If you are still seeing the November pictures, you need to clean out your cache.

Thanks very much to my colleagues for their work gathering and presenting these photos every month. As always, the Specials are fabulous!

TV Alert–Johnny Depp on THE OPRAH WINFREY SHOW Monday, December 13th!

Deppheads, set your VCRs–Monique reports that Oprah will usher in the awards season on Monday, December 13th by airing a show which features interviews with likely Golden Globes Best Actor nominees. The show will feature Adam Sandler, whose new film SPANGLISH will be released on the following Friday, but it will also include interviews with Jamie Foxx (RAY), Johnny Depp (FINDING NEVERLAND), and Leonardo DiCaprio (THE AVIATOR). The footage of Johnny will no doubt come from the taping that originally aired on November 2, 2004; we don’t know if any of the footage will be new, or if it will simply repeat part of what aired on Election Day.

Oprah’s Best Actor fest is timed to coincide with the announcement of the Golden Globes nominations on Monday morning. The Golden Globes, unlike the Oscars, offer separate awards for drama and for comedy/musical, so there will be ten Best Actor nominees rather than five. Be sure to watch the announcement of the Golden Globes nominations on Monday morning, and keep your fingers crossed for Johnny!