Articles from August 2009

THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS opens in the U.S. on Christmas Day

Sony Pictures Classics will release Terry Gilliam’s The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus in the United States on Christmas Day, according to a report on ComingSoon.net. That’s good news! There is no word yet on how large the release will be; a Christmas Day release in Los Angeles and New York would make the film eligible for Academy Awards consideration this year. The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus features Heath Ledger’s final performance; Ledger’s role was completed by Johnny Depp, Jude Law, and Colin Farrell.

The Zone thanks Emma for sharing the news! You can read more about The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, including its upcoming North American premiere at the Toronto Film Festival, on the Zone’s News & Views forum.–Part-Time Poet

Johnny Depp on cover of Australia's THE BIG ISSUE

Australian magazine The Big Issue features Johnny Depp on its current cover, with an interview that focuses on Public Enemies and next year’s Alice in Wonderland. “In Public Enemies, Dillinger seems very comfortable with the media’s spotlight,” their reporter observed. “How comfortable are you with that scrutiny?”

Johnny replied, “Well, the thing I’m infinitely more comfortable with is the process and the effort of making the character, and the collaborative process: making the movie. Then there’s this other stuff that goes along with it that I don’t think I will ever understand, but I do appreciate as a part of the gig. It’s a certain amount of attention that I suppose goes along with it. The alternative is a real drag: if there’s no attention, well, the job goes away, doesn’t it?”

Asked if Dillinger would be comfortable in today’s world, Johnny said, “I think he’d probably run screaming. I truly do. I’m shocked at things that I see. I’m shocked at things that are available on the internet. I’m shocked at what technology is promising in the next couple of years. [. . .] I think he’d run away.”

The Zone thanks Emma for the news, and Sally Nightmare for her scan of the cover. You can read more of Johnny’s interview on the Zone’s Pit forum; thanks to RumLover for sharing scans of the article. –Part-Time Poet

BREAKING NEWS–New photos of Johnny Depp arriving in Nice

Home, sweet home . . . with his cigar-box guitar slung over his shoulder and a coffee cup in hand, Johnny Depp arrived at Nice airport today–it’s the first time we’ve seen him out in public since his surprise appearance at ComicCon a month ago. Johnny was accompanied by security chief Jerry Judge and Rock ‘n Roll Hall-of-Famer Patti Smith. During the Public Enemies promotional tour, Johnny mentioned that he might play on Patti Smith’s new album; we hope that collaboration is in the works. To see a larger version of the photo of Johnny strolling through Nice airport, CLICK HERE, and to see a photo of Johnny with Jerry Judge, CLICK HERE.

The Zone thanks johnnybloom for sharing the photos; you can also see them on PopSugar HERE. –Part-Time Poet

"He lifts everyone's spirits"–Johnny Depp visits children at Great Ormond Street Hospital

When Johnny Depp was in London last month promoting his film Public Enemies, he didn’t forget his youngest fans. He donned his Captain Jack Sparrow costume and visited Great Ormond Street Hospital, popping in on young patients and wishing them well. John Walker, whose younger son Enda was receiving treatment at GOSH in July, told a British newspaper about his family’s surprise encounter with Captain Jack: “One of the nurses asked my wife Martina and I if our boys liked pirates and the next thing we knew, Johnny Depp came bounding into the room! It was so out of the blue and incredibly exciting.”

The photo shows the Walker family with Johnny. “Johnny was such a genuine guy and when he was talking to my two sons, you could see that he really did care,” John Walker said. “Apparently he often does surprise visits to Great Ormond Street and it’s a good thing too, because he lifts everyone’s spirits. ” And it lifts our spirits every time we hear about Johnny’s generosity and kindness. There’s only one Johnny Depp!

The Zone thanks Emma for sharing the Walker’s story; you can read it in full on the News & Views forum. –Part-Time Poet

A new selection for Oprah Noodlemantra's Book Club–ATTICA starts today!

Oprah Noodlemantra’s Book Club is preparing to discuss a new book: Garry Kilworth’s Attica. Johnny Depp’s production company, Infinitum Nihil, purchased the movie rights to this young-adult novel which Booklist calls “an innovative fantasy adventure” and “a rare find.” According to The Bookseller, Attica “is reminiscent of Narnia with its alternative, magical world. A fantastic read that will have imaginations working overtime.”

How can you resist? Our ONBC moderators, Liz and DeppintheHeartofTexas, will begin presenting background tidbits on Attica today; discussion will begin on September 8th, so you have plenty of time to pick up a copy and join the discussion. Stop by ONBC and have fun! –Part-Time Poet

A new selection for Oprah Noodlemantra’s Book Club–ATTICA starts today!

Oprah Noodlemantra’s Book Club is preparing to discuss a new book: Garry Kilworth’s Attica. Johnny Depp’s production company, Infinitum Nihil, purchased the movie rights to this young-adult novel which Booklist calls “an innovative fantasy adventure” and “a rare find.” According to The Bookseller, Attica “is reminiscent of Narnia with its alternative, magical world. A fantastic read that will have imaginations working overtime.”

How can you resist? Our ONBC moderators, Liz and DeppintheHeartofTexas, will begin presenting background tidbits on Attica today; discussion will begin on September 8th, so you have plenty of time to pick up a copy and join the discussion. Stop by ONBC and have fun! –Part-Time Poet

Doors documentary to screen at Deauville Film Festival

Director Tom DiCillo has announced on his blog that When You’re Strange, his documentary about The Doors featuring narration by Johnny Depp, “has been invited to the Deauville International Film Festival in France in early September.” That’s fantastic news! Writes DiCillo, “It’s a great festival, focusing primarily on American films. I have been there with 4 previous films and Living In Oblivion won Best Picture there in 1995.

“It is a significant festival to premiere the film in France at. The French have developed a strong affection for The Doors and especially for Jim who is buried in Paris. With a French distributor in place (hopefully) the festival can be used to jump-start the French theatrical release.” Congratulations to Tom DiCillo and everyone who has worked on When You’re Strange, and good luck in Deauville!

The Zone thanks Emma for breaking the news; you can read more about the Doors documentary on the Zone’s News & Views forum. –Part-Time Poet

At last–THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS gets a U.S. distributor

The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus‘s long search for a U.S. distributor is finally over. Variety reports that Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions Group “is in advanced talks to pick up The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, with plans for it to go out theatrically, likely this year, via Sony Pictures Classics.” That’s good news for all the fans of Terry Gilliam, the late Heath Ledger, and Johnny Depp. Rumor is that the film will have a (very) limited theatrical release in the U.S. around Christmastime.

According to Variety’s Sharon Swart, the Sony deal could be officially announced as soon as next week. The film “is expected to be a lucrative homevideo title due to the Ledger angle [it was Heath Ledger’s last film] and the other star power,” says Variety. “Terry Gilliam’s adventure also features Johnny Depp, Jude Law and Colin Farrell, who replaced Ledger in various fantasy scenes after the thesp died during the film’s production in January 2008.”

The Zone thanks Theresa for the Variety article; you can read more about the release of The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus on the Zone’s News & Views forum. We also thank AnaMaria for the screencap from the Dr. Parnassus trailer; to see a larger version, CLICK HERE. –Part-Time Poet

A few words with Jerry Bruckheimer about PIRATES 4 and THE LONE RANGER

Producer Jerry Bruckheimer appeared at the Television Critics Association Press Tour to promote his television series, including his newest offerings, The Forgotten and Dark Blue. Christina Radish of IESB.com asked a few questions about films Mr. Bruckheimer has in development, too. Here is the portion of her interview that relates to projects involving Johnny Depp:

Q: How do you think Pirates 4 is going to be with Rob Marshall as director?

Jerry Bruckheimer: I think it will be great. First, we’ve got to make a deal. But he’s got a great sense of humor. He’s very funny.

Q: It’s so Johnny Depp to want to be Tonto, but did you want him as the Ranger for The Lone Ranger?

Jerry Bruckheimer: No. We always wanted him as Tonto.

The Zone thanks Theresa for sharing the Bruckheimer interview; you can read more on the Zone’s News & Views forum. –Part-Time Poet

Here it is–the trailer for THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS

“Nothing is permanent . . . not even death,” says the character Johnny Depp plays in Terry Gilliam’s The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus–haunting words for Heath Ledger’s last film. Here’s a chance to look at the just-released trailer for the film:

The Toronto Film Festival, which will honor The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus with a gala presentation this year, offers the following plot synopsis on their website: “This fantastical morality tale tells the story of Dr. Parnassus and his travelling show, the extraordinary ‘Imaginarium’. Blessed with the remarkable gift of guiding the imaginations of others, Dr. Parnassus is cursed with a dark secret. An inveterate gambler, thousands of years ago he made a bet with the devil, Mr. Nick, and won immortality. Centuries later, on meeting his one true love, Dr. Parnassus made another deal with the devil, trading his immortality for youth, on the condition that when his daughter reached her sixteenth birthday, she would become the property of Mr. Nick.”


The Zone thanks tocnavforjd for sharing the trailer. –Part-Time Poet

THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS to have North American premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival

Some good news for Terry Gilliam’s The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus: it will make its North American premiere as one of the Canadian Gala presentations at this year’s Toronto International Film Festival. Doctor Parnassus is a UK/Canadian co-production, and therefore counts as a Canadian film. Zone readers will recall that Doctor Parnassus was Heath Ledger’s final film, and that Johnny Depp, Jude Law, and Colin Farrell stepped in to complete Ledger’s role.

In an interview with Film 4 conducted at ComicCon, Terry Gilliam had this to say about Johnny Depp and his work on The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus:

Q: You’re working again with Johnny Depp in Doctor Parnassus. What do you like about him?

Terry Gilliam: Johnny’s brilliant. What he does and what I do matches beautifully when we’re working together. In this instance he was the first person I called after Heath died because I didn’t really know what I was going to do. I asked if I could count on him, and he said sure, whatever you want I’ll be there. That’s what saved the film, Johnny’s involvement.

Q: Why do you work so well together?

Terry Gilliam: He’s so smart, so funny and his timing is brilliant. When we were filming, we were just laughing every day. I would come up with an idea, he would come up with another one, we were leapfrogging forward. I could throw him something and say why don’t you do this, and he would take the idea and just make it into something balletic almost. I always think Johnny wanted to be a Monty Python member.

The Zone thanks FANtasticJD for the Toronto Film Festival news, and Emma for the Film 4 interview. You can read more about the Toronto Film Festival on the News & Views forum; there are several ComicCon interviews with Terry Gilliam on the Porch forum. –Part-Time Poet

September issue of TOTAL FILM features Burton's ALICE IN WONDERLAND

According to the September 2009 issue of Total Film, Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland is one of the “10 Coolest Movies” currently being made (Alice is now in post-production). Total Film features a 4-page article on Alice, with reporting by Mark Salisbury and glorious pictures, including a full-page one of Johnny Depp as the Mad Hatter. “Everyone’s got an image of Wonderland that is very bright and cartoony,” Tim Burton says, but it won’t look that way in his new film. “Burton’s take promises to be much darker, quirkier, and more visually arresting,” writes Salisbury. “Yes, it’s Burtonesque.”

Says Tim Burton of his ambitions for Alice, “The goal was to make it kind of classic [. . .] but also make it look new.”

The Zone thanks In-too-Depp for sharing scans of the Total Film article, as well as a feature on Alice in Wonderland in the September issue of Empire. You can see them on the Zone’s News & View forum. –Part-Time Poet