Articles from October 2009

Happy Halloween from the Zone! Enjoy the Hatter-o'-Lantern!

Happy Halloween! This holiday brings out the creativity in Johnny Depp’s fans–the Captain Jack-o’-Lantern has been a popular design for carving pumpkins ever since the Black Pearl set sail, and we’ve seen great Edward Scissorhands pumpkins, too. But this is the first pumpkin we’ve ever seen carved with Johnny’s latest character, the Mad Hatter from Alice in Wonderland. This pumpkin was designed by Cayo and carved by GAO and Cayo, two Zoners from Japan. They did such a fantastic job we wanted to share it with the world. Brava!

To see a larger version of the Hatter-o’-Lantern, CLICK HERE, and to see how beautiful the Hatter-o’-Lantern is when lit, CLICK HERE. Thanks for sharing your work, Cayo and GAO! Happy Halloween! –Part-Time Poet

Giving Freddie his due–a documentary on the NIGHTMARE ON ELM STREET series is in the works

Just in time for Halloween comes word that the venerable Nightmare on Elm Street series is getting recognition for its contribution to the horror genre: documentary filmmakers Dan Farrands and Andrew Kasch, who made His Name Was Jason: Thirty Years of Friday the 13th, are now hard at work on Never Sleep Again: The Elm Street Legacy. Fearnet.com promises that Never Sleep Again will be “the definitive documentary on modern-day horror icon Freddie Krueger.” Of course, the original A Nightmare on Elm Street holds a special place in the hearts of those who follow the career of Johnny Depp because Johnny made his film debut as Nightmare’s unlucky Glen Lantz, whose gruesome death scene helped establish Freddie Krueger as one truly scary screen villain. Hard to believe that was 25 years ago!

Will Johnny Depp appear in Never Sleep Again to talk about his film debut? Farrands and Kasch would like nothing better, and have issued an invitation. They are presently on their 5th day of interviews of what will be “a 20 to 25 day shoot,” and they told Joseph McCabe of Fearnet.com: “[W]e’re early on, but what’s great is so many awesome people are walking through here and we’ve got the word out to some bigger people. And yes, Johnny Depp’s people have been contacted, so we’re gunning for Johnny, but we’ll see. [I]f we get him, and it’s very possible we might, [. . .] this would be the first time he’s ever discussed his work on Elm Street in a documentary about the series, which would be huge.”

It would be wonderful to hear Johnny reminisce about his first film role, and, in its own way, his career is one of Elm Street’s great legacies, so we wish Farrands and Kasch the best of luck, and we salute them for paying tribute to the neglected horror genre. The filmmakers stress that while they have issued an invitation to Johnny, they don’t yet know what his response will be. “So no promises but that would be great–there’s no stone that we’re leaving unturned.”

The Zone thanks RumLover for sharing the article on Never Sleep Again; you can read more on the Pit forum. To read the full interview with Farrands and Kasch on Fearnet.com, CLICK HERE. –Part-Time Poet

Johnny Depp at the Spike TV Scream Awards

Just in case you missed Johnny Depp’s appearance at the Scream Awards on Tuesday night, here’s a video clip for your enjoyment:


Many thanks to Spike TV and to Emma, Theresa, and Chenault for sharing video with the Zone. It’s always a joy to see and hear Johnny, but you may want to adjust your computer’s volume–the Scream Awards are well-named! –Part-Time Poet

TV ALERT–Catch Johnny Depp on the Scream Awards Tuesday night, October 27th!

Just a reminder that the 2009 Scream Awards will air on Spike TV on Tuesday night, October 27, 2009, at 10 pm Eastern time–if you can’t be in front of your TV, set your TiVo or VCR! And don’t be late . . . an online blogger who attended the awards said that Johnny Depp came out to receive the first award of the evening, for “Most Anticipated Fantasy Film” for Alice in Wonderland, and you’d hate to miss that! Then stay around to see the Johnny-and-Keith show, as JD presents Keith Richards with the Rock Immortal Award. –Part-Time Poet

Keith Richards speculates on Johnny Depp's return to PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN

In a quick interview backstage at the Scream Awards taping, Access Hollywood reporter Laura Saltman spoke to Keith Richards about receiving the Rock Immortal award from Johnny Depp–“Yeah, it’s good to see Johnny again,” Richards replied, smiling–and then asked for his opinion about the future of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise. “I heard [Johnny Depp] might not be doing Pirates of the Caribbean 4,” Saltman said. “Do you think anybody [else] could ever play that Jack Sparrow character?”

Keith Richards replied, “I wouldn’t know the ins and outs of it. He mentioned it today, so I presume he probably is going to do it . . . but that’s just me,” Richards added, with a self-effacing smile. “Awesome!” said the reporter. We have an accord . . . .

To see the Access Hollywood interview with Keith Richards, CLICK HERE. The Zone thanks Theresa for sharing the interview. –Part-Time Poet

Graham King moves his GK Films from Warner Bros to Sony

Producer Graham King–that genial fellow on the left–has just signed a three-year, multi-film deal for his GK Films with Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions Group, Variety reports. Mr. King is wrapping up a 4 1/2-year first-look deal with Warner Bros. The switch in studio affiliation is of major interest to Johnny Depp fans since GK Films regularly partners with Johnny’s company, Infinitum Nihil, on IN’s projects: for example, GK Films co-produced and fully financed The Rum Diary, starring Johnny Depp and directed by Bruce Robinson, which filmed in Puerto Rico earlier this year. GK Films is also producing Gore Verbinski’s animated feature Rango, starring Johnny Depp, which is due in theaters in 2011.

According to Variety, Graham King “will continue to work with Warners on a number of films already in development”–presumably this will include the upcoming Infinitum Nihil project Dark Shadows, although nothing definite has been said about that film. “Working with Warners has been, and continues to be, a wonderful experience and I cherish the support and collaboration of the whole team,” King said. “But the deal with Sony Pictures gives us guaranteed distribution for our films and the opportunity to work with a successful and respected studio that handles every type of motion picture equally well.” Sony continues to support smaller-budget films aimed at adult audiences, while Warners has all but turned its back on independent films since the writer’s strike.

Under the terms of his new deal, King’s GK Films will independently develop, finance and produce a minimum of two films a year that will be marketed and distributed worldwide by Sony. The Zone wishes Mr. King well at his new studio and hopes some of those films will be IN projects starring Johnny Depp.

The Zone thanks FANtastic JD for breaking the news; you can read more about the GK Films-Sony deal on the Porch forum. To read the Variety article, CLICK HERE. -Part-Time Poet

Nominate Johnny Depp for a 2010 People's Choice Award!

Time to do your civic duty and vote to nominate Johnny Depp as Favorite Movie Actor for the 2010 People’s Choice Awards! This is one of the rare occasions where regular moviegoers choose the winners, and it’s always fun to participate. This round of voting will determine the nominees; the top five votegetters in each category will receive People’s Choice nominations. There are 31 categories on the ballot, covering movies, television, and music, but you do not need to vote in every category to have your vote count. The nomination process allows write-in votes, so you can nominate Public Enemies as Favorite Movie, too.

To access the People’s Choice Awards ballot, CLICK HERE, and to go directly to Johnny’s category, Favorite Movie Actor, CLICK HERE.

The Zone thanks Inlovewithyoureyes for breaking the news: you can read more about the People’s Choice Awards on the Zone’s News & Views forum.

The nominees will be announced on November 10, 2009. The People’s Choice Awards will take place in Los Angeles on January 6, 2010 and will be broadcast by CBS. –Part-Time Poet

Backstage at the 2009 Scream Awards–"A lot of fun," says Johnny Depp

The photo at left shows Johnny Depp and Keith Richards backstage at the 2009 Scream Awards, during which Johnny presented Keith with the Rock Immortal award. “I liked the Living Legend,” Richards said when interviewed about his latest honor, “but Immortal is even better.” The audience at the Greek Theatre gave the Rock Immortal a standing ovation . . . . As for Johnny Depp, when asked for his reaction to the evening, he told Radar.online, “It’s a lot of fun.” Asked if he liked awards shows, Johnny replied, “It’s not my thing, but I’m having a good time.”

The Zone thanks Emma for the news; you can read more on the Zone’s News & Views forum. To see a larger version of the photo of Johnny Depp and Keith Richards, CLICK HERE. –Part-Time Poet

BREAKING NEWS–Johnny Depp presents Rock Immortal award to Keith Richards at Spike TV's Scream Awards

Johnny Depp both gave and received awards at the 2009 Scream Awards held at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles on October 17th. JD paid tribute to Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards by presenting him with the Rock Immortal award . . . a fitting pairing, since Richards famously inspired Johnny’s portrayal of Captain Jack Sparrow, and then went on to play Captain Jack’s father in AT WORLD’S END. Said Johnny of the Rock Immortal, “Long after humanity incinerates the entire world, the only things left alive are cockroaches . . . and Keith Richards.” To see a photo of Johnny and Keith on stage together, CLICK HERE.

Johnny Depp also accepted the award for Most Anticipated Movie, for Tim Burton’s upcoming Alice in Wonderland. To see a photo of Johnny at the microphone, CLICK HERE. The Zone thanks Emma for the photos and Theresa for breaking the news.

The Scream Awards will be broadcast on Spike TV on October 27, 2009 at 10 p.m. You can read more on the Zone’s News & Views and Pit forums. –Part-Time Poet

BREAKING NEWS–Johnny Depp presents Rock Immortal award to Keith Richards at Spike TV’s Scream Awards

Johnny Depp both gave and received awards at the 2009 Scream Awards held at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles on October 17th. JD paid tribute to Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards by presenting him with the Rock Immortal award . . . a fitting pairing, since Richards famously inspired Johnny’s portrayal of Captain Jack Sparrow, and then went on to play Captain Jack’s father in AT WORLD’S END. Said Johnny of the Rock Immortal, “Long after humanity incinerates the entire world, the only things left alive are cockroaches . . . and Keith Richards.” To see a photo of Johnny and Keith on stage together, CLICK HERE.

Johnny Depp also accepted the award for Most Anticipated Movie, for Tim Burton’s upcoming Alice in Wonderland. To see a photo of Johnny at the microphone, CLICK HERE. The Zone thanks Emma for the photos and Theresa for breaking the news.

The Scream Awards will be broadcast on Spike TV on October 27, 2009 at 10 p.m. You can read more on the Zone’s News & Views and Pit forums. –Part-Time Poet

Freddie Highmore calls Johnny Depp "a role model and a close friend"

Young actor Freddie Highmore, who soared to fame via co-starring roles with Johnny Depp in Finding Neverland and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, continues to build an impressive film resume. During an interview with the Herald Sun promoting Astro Boy, in which he voices the title character, Highmore, now 17, called Johnny Depp “a role model and a close friend,” and said he particularly admires the way Johnny varies the kinds of characters he plays. “If I was able to replicate that on a smaller level through acting, it would be fantastic,” Highmore said.

The actors have maintained their friendship despite their busy schedules. “We keep in contact and see each other whenever we’re in the same country,” Highmore said. “Everyone respects him, which I think is down to the fact that he’s such a nice guy–he’s not the typical image you have of a Hollywood actor who has it all.”

You can read more of the Freddie Highmore interview on the Zone’s Porch forum; to read it on the Herald Sun website, CLICK HERE. –Part-Time Poet

Johnny Depp voted sexiest male movie star of all time by EMPIRE

Johnny Depp has once again been voted the sexiest male movie star of all time by the readers of Empire. Here’s a bit of what the British film magazine had to say when announcing the honor: “Johnny Depp first topped an Empire sexiest poll waaaay back in 1995, but it appears that age cannot wither his appeal. He has the cheekbones and looks of a matinee idol, but the killer stroke that won everyone’s hearts is the fact that he prefers to play wierdos and oddballs–and, as Cap’n Jack Sparrow, he’s hilarious too. Long may he reign.” Hear, hear!

The Zone thanks FANtasticJD for the Empire article; you can read more about it on the Zone’s Pit forum. –Part-Time Poet

Johnny Depp directs music video for Vanessa Paradis's "Il y a"

Johnny Depp and Vanessa Paradis have collaborated on another music video! Johnny has directed the video for Vanessa’s latest release, “Il y a.” Ethereal yet warm, mysterious yet down-to-earth, the video perfectly complements Vanessa’s unique voice. You can watch the video on You Tube:


The Zone thanks FANtasticJD for breaking the news. Vanessa Paradis’s “Best of” album, which contains “Il y a,” will be released in France on November 23, 2009; you can read more (in French) on Vanessa’s official site HERE. –Part-Time Poet

PUBLIC ENEMIES to be released on DVD in Region 1 on December 8th

Here’s the perfect item to add to your holiday wish list: Michael Mann’s gangster epic Public Enemies, starring Johnny Depp as Public Enemy #1 John Dillinger and Christian Bale as his FBI agent/nemesis Melvin Purvis, will be arriving on Blu-ray and DVD in region 1 on December 8, 2009. For our lucky friends across the pond, the UK release date is a month earlier: November 2, 2009. The DVD edition will be released in two versions–a two-disc special edition, listed at $34.98 but available for a pre-order price of $24.49 at Amazon (a 30% discount); and a standard edition, listed at $29.98 but available for $20.99 as a pre-order on Amazon. The Blu-ray edition is listed at $36.98 but is available at Amazon for the pre-order price of $25.99. Day-of-release sales at your favorite retailer should also offer good discounts.

The Zone thanks Theresa and Emma for sharing the news; you can read details of the special features included on each version of Public Enemies on the Zone’s News & Views forum. –Part-Time Poet

DIVINE RAPTURE to be the subject of an Irish documentary

“Marlon Brando and the greatest film never made in Ireland is now the focus of a remarkable tribute,” writes Ralph Riegel of the Irish Independent. “The greatest film never made in Ireland” is, of course, is 1995’s Divine Rapture, which was to star Marlon Brando, Johnny Depp, and Debra Winger. But the production shut down for financial reasons after less than three weeks’ shooting and with only 24 minutes of film in the can . . . alas. “[N]ow an Irish film company is preparing a special documentary on Divine Rapture and Marlon Brando’s ill-fated time in Ireland,” writes Riegel.

The documentary, called Ballybrando, is being produced by Hot Shot Films, which recently flew several members of the Divine Rapture film crew back to the Irish village of Ballycotton “for a nostalgic chat with locals about the movie that never was.” Riegel reports that “the locals were stunned” when they saw the 24 minutes of footage that survives from the shoot.

One of the film’s extras, singer Darragh McGann, told Riegel that he gives Marlon Brando credit for inspiring his career. “When Marlon praised my singing after a break in filming and told me I should make a career out of it, I believed him,” McGann says. “I have never looked back since.” As for Brando’s compliment, “that’s something I will treasure for life.”

Ballybrando is due to be screened by RTE as part of its winter schedule; hopefully it will be shown abroad as well.

The Zone thanks Theresa for the Riegel article; you can read more about it on the News & Views forum, or CLICK HERE. –Part-Time Poet

ALICE IN WONDERLAND–A few words from the White Rabbit

Actor Michael Sheen, who plays the White Rabbit in Tim Burton’s new version of Alice in Wonderland, spoke about his filming experience in a recent interview with Parade. Saying he was “delighted to be cast” in Burton’s film, Sheen said, “Everyone has an inner white fluffy animal, it’s just a question of finding it before it’s too late.” As for his approach to the role, Sheen told Parade, “The White Rabbit is such an iconic character that I didn’t feel I should break the mould too much, so I just sort of went with it.”

Sheen’s affection for the White Rabbit reaches back to his childhood. “Alice in Wonderland was one of the first stories I truly loved when I was growing up. It had a huge impact on me, and it’s stayed with me ever since, so to be part of Tim Burton’s version is just like a dream come true.”

The Zone thanks Emma for posting the Sheen interview; you can read more on the “All Things Alice” thread on the Zone’s News & Views forum. –Part-Time Poet

Rich Ross to become chairman of Walt Disney Studios

Rich Ross has been named to succeed Dick Cook as chairman of Walt Disney Studios, ending the suspense that has swirled around that position since Mr. Cook’s abrupt departure last month. Mr. Ross currently heads Disney Channels Worldwide and has shepherded the growth of crowd-pleasing hits like High School Musical and Hannah Montana. Mr. Ross “has created huge value for the company” during his time in charge of the Disney Channels, Disney CEO Bob Iger told Daily Variety. “He turned that channel into a real creative engine for the company, and an effective means of delivering content and supporting the brand on a global basis. The leader of the studio needs very much to be able to do that.”

Noting that Mr. Ross has a strong television background but is “an outsider” in the film industry, Variety says that “Ross will have to forge ties with the prominent producers, helmers and thesps who work frequently with the studio, including Jerry Bruckheimer, Robert Zemeckis, Scott Rudin and Johnny Depp, as well as DreamWorks principals Steven Spielberg and Stacey Snider, who inked a distribution pact with Disney earlier this year.” At this point it is not clear how Mr. Ross’s promotion might affect Disney’s slate of upcoming films, including Pirates of the Caribbean 4 and The Lone Ranger.

To read the Variety article on Rich Ross’s promotion, CLICK HERE. We congratulate Mr. Ross and wish him personal and artistic success in his new position. –Part-Time Poet

Announcing a new gallery for the Zone!

We’re happy to announce a new addition to the Zone’s permanent photo galleries–a gallery in The Deppartment, under “Johnny’s Public Appearances,” to celebrate Johnny’s appearance at the Venice Film Festival on September 5, 2007, for Tim Burton Day. What an exciting day that was for Depp and Burton fans! Johnny presented Tim with the Golden Lion Award, the Venice Film Festival’s highest honor, and the first footage from Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street was screened to an ecstatic audience.

To see the new gallery, click on the Gallery Showcase button next to the Picture of the Week. Many thanks to all the Zone members who shared their photos; we hope the Venice 2007 gallery brings back many happy memories for you. –Part-Time Poet

Johnny Depp makes a guest appearance on Babybird's new album

Returning to his musical roots, Johnny Depp will make a guest appearance on Babybird’s new album, according to a report from MTV’s UK website. The album is scheduled to drop in February 2010. Johnny also hooked the band up with new producers, the Grammy-nominated duo of Bruce Witkin and Ryan Dorn. Zone readers know Bruce Witkin’s name well; he and Johnny have been making music together since they played in a band called The Kids. The photo at left shows Johnny on set during the filming of a Babybird video last week, which he was directing. To see a larger photo, CLICK HERE, and to see another photo from the video shoot, CLICK HERE.

The Zone thanks Emma for the news; you can read more about Johnny Depp’s work with Babybird on the Zone’s News & Views forum. –Part-Time Poet

London premiere of THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS on October 6th

The UK premiere of Terry Gilliam’s The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus will take place in London, at the Empire at Leicester Square, on Tuesday, October 6th. Johnny Depp is not scheduled to attend the premiere. Director Terry Gilliam and actors Lily Cole, Tom Waits, and Verne Troyer are expected to be present. The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus was Heath Ledger’s final film; Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell, and Jude Law stepped in to complete the role after Ledger’s untimely death. The Zone thanks Jillian for news about the premiere; you can read more on the Zone’s News & Views forum. –Part-Time Poet