TV ALERT–Watch for Johnny Depp and SWEENEY TODD on E! channel's "Hot Holiday 16" tonight

The E! network kicks off its movie promotion for the upcoming holiday season tonight, Friday November 16th, with a half-hour special called “Hot Holiday 16.” Presumably this will include trailers and other promotional features for 16 films to be released between now and New Year’s Day (when one-week Oscar consideration runs must be completed). E! is dropping Johnny Depp’s name first in their promo spot: “What do Johnny Depp, Natalie Portman, Jerry Seinfeld & Keira Knightley have in common? Well, these stars and many others will drop by during our preview of must-see holiday movies.” While we aren’t expecting Johnny to literally “drop by,” it will be great to see a feature on SWEENEY TODD. “Hot Holiday 16” airs at 6 p.m. tonight Eastern and Pacific time, and 5 p.m. Central, with repeat broadcasts at 8 a.m. Eastern on Saturday, November 17th and 7 a.m. Eastern on Sunday, November 18th. Thanks to scratchthedragon for breaking the story. –Part-Time Poet

Johnny Depp featured in PEOPLE's "Sexiest Man Alive" issue

You can find that beautiful DanMacMedan photo of Johnny Depp in the new PEOPLE Magazine, which lists him among this year’s ten “Sexiest Men Alive”–a group that includes Matt Damon (on the cover as this year’s “Sexiest Man Alive”), Patrick Dempsey, Ryan Reynolds, Brad Pitt, James McAvoy, Dave Annable, Will Smith, Javier Bardem, and Shemar Moore. Here’s what PEOPLE had to say about Johnny: “Why is he sexy? For starters, there’s his quirky style (he lives in France, dresses like a rock star, is not afraid of a little eyeliner) and his devil-may-care spirit (didn’t take a single singing lesson to prepare for his role in the upcoming musical SWEENEY TODD). Most of all, there’s something heart-melting about how gaga he is for his gaggle– daughter Lily-Rose, 8, and son Jack, 5, his kids with longtime girlfriend Vanessa Paradis. “Suddenly you meet your reason to live,” Depp, 44, told London’s Daily Mail about being a father. “They make me happy.”

The Zone thanks H2H for posting the “Sexiest Man Alive” story; you can read a lively commentary about PEOPLE’s choices (and their editors’ possible need for corneal transplants) on the Pit. To see a larger version of the photo, click here: and to see PEOPLE’s photo gallery of the Sexiest Men Alive, click here: –Part-Time Poet

"Spectacular" and "breathtaking"–Fox News reviews the SWEENEY TODD preview at Lincoln Center

Fox News critic Roger Friedman attended Tim Burton’s presentation at Lincoln Center on November 14th, and thinks Johnny Depp’s performance as the crazed barber Sweeney Todd has “Oscar written all over it.” Writes Friedman, “Last night, at Rose Hall in Jazz at Lincoln Center, a lucky few of us got to see about 25 minutes of footage of SWEENEY TODD. This is the long awaited film version of Stephen Sondheim’s magnificent 1981 Broadway musical, directed by Burton and starring Johnny Depp as the Demon Barber of Fleet Street and Helena Bonham Carter as Mrs. Lovett, his accomplice. The Oscar race just got officially really, really interesting,” says Friedman. “The three set pieces we saw were, in a word, spectacular. They were also just enough to light a fire and suggest that Paramount Dreamworks has a potential Best Picture nominee in SWEENEY TODD, and maybe even a winner.” Wow.

As for the cast, Friedman notes, “Both Depp and Carter sing, as do Sasha ‘Borat’ Baron Cohen, Alan Rickman, Timothy Spall and three important newcomers: Jayne Wisener, Jamie Bower, and Ed Sanders. Of the three, we only got to hear Bower besides Depp and Carter. But young Bower turns out to be a winner. His rendition of my favorite number from SWEENEY—’Johanna’—just knocked out the crowd. And just a hint of what Depp does in this film was demonstrated in a number called ‘My Friends,’ in which Sweeney sings to his recovered barber tools after returning from 15 years in prison. The number was breathtaking.”

Friedman’s conclusion after seeing the clips? “Johnny Depp can sing, and he makes for an impressive Sweeney. The look and attitude are right. The performance should earn him an Oscar nomination as well. Carter, who specializes in playing “off’ types, makes an excellent comic and romantic foil for him.” The Zone thanks Emma for posting the Fox News review; you can read it in its entirety on the Porch forum. –Part-Time Poet