Shreveport celebrates PETER PAN's 100th anniversary with a screening of FINDING NEVERLAND~~

“FINDING NEVERLAND will make a believer out of you,” writes Shreveport Times reviewer Alexandyr Kent, who attended last night’s festival screening. FINDING NEVERLAND’s screenwriter, David Magee, was the guest of honor at the event, designed to celebrate the 100th anniversary of J. M. Barrie’s children’s classic, PETER PAN. Magee spoke to the crowd about his conception of the film and the importance of the imagination. The screenplay is designed to show parallels between playwright J. M. Barrie’s real life and the fantasy world of PETER PAN, as Barrie becomes a surrogate father to the real Peter and his brothers: “The story of FINDING NEVERLAND becomes Barrie’s struggle to create a believable Peter Pan and teach the real Peter to trust his imagination,” explains Kent.

Kent gives the film a rave review, especially singling out the “complex” performance of Johnny Depp and the heart-rending portrayal of Peter Davies by young Freddie Highmore. “The magic of FINDING NEVERLAND lies in the way it subtly interweaves visions of reality with those of fantasy,” writes Kent, and he finds the film a worthy addition to PETER PAN lore. Thanks to Mad Scntst for sharing Kent’s review with the Zone!

Johnny Depp's "perfect Scots accent" wows critics!

American actors are generally ridiculed for their often feeble attempts to duplicate accents, but the Scottish accent Johnny adopts for FINDING NEVERLAND has met with universal critical acclaim. This is particularly noteworthy since convincing Scottish accents are so difficult to do: “When the BBC compiled a list of the Top Ten worst movie accents, no fewer than three were attempts to imitate the famous rolling Rs, short vowels and unique voice qualities of the Scots,” reports Brian Pendreigh in The Mail. “But now Hollywood heartthrob Johnny Depp has succeeded where so many great actors have failed by producing the sort of Scots accent experts believe could fool even native speakers. [. . .] The movie business paper Screen International described Depp’s accent as ‘flawless.'”

The BBC’s nominees for worst Scottish accents include Mel Gibson, Mike Myers, and Christopher Lambert in HIGHLANDER, but Johnny need not fear landing in their company. A Glasgow University professor and expert on accents, Dr John Corbett, told Pendreigh that Johnny’s accent in FINDING NEVERLAND “could even fool natives.”

As modest as ever, Johnny gives all the credit for his accent to his vocal coaches, Julia Wilson Dixon and Barbara Berkery. “I was lucky to have excellent voice coaches,” Johnny told reporters in Venice. “The one thing I couldn’t quite say with a Scots accent was ‘burglar alarm’.” His coaches are equally delighted with their famous pupil. “Johnny is a natural,” says Barbara Berkery, a former actress who also helped Renee Zellweger master an accent to play Bridget Jones. Julia Wilson Dixon adds, “Johnny was fascinated by the accent and very much enjoyed being a Scotsman.” The Zone thanks Emma and DeepinDepp for sharing the articles–to read more, visit the News and Views forum.