Articles from July 2010

More photos of Johnny Depp with fans in Hawaii!

This extremely appealing photo of Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow isn’t a studio shot–he is sitting inside an SUV, reaching through the open window to shake an awestruck admirer’s hand. This is the good Captain off-duty: the charm is every bit as incandescent off-screen. To see the photo, CLICK HERE.

It has been a particularly good week for Hawaiian fans hoping to catch a glimpse of JD; much of the Pirates filming was set on the Queen Anne’s Revenge, so those who waited at the pier in Kaneohe occasionally got to see him arrive or depart. New pictures from Thursday, July 29th show JD arriving in costume for some night shooting, accompanied by security chief Jerry Judge. To see the photos, CLICK HERE and HERE. Many thanks to Emma for sharing the photos; you can read much more about the filming of Pirates of the Caribbean 4: On Stranger Tides on the Zone’s News & Views forum.

Johnny Depp greets fans in Hawaii–new video!

After a full day of filming Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Johnny Depp–wearing a familiar bandanna and camo jacket with a Che Guevara patch–waved greetings to the fans waiting at He’eia Pier in Kaneohe, Hawaii as he left the set on Tuesday. That’s security chief Jerry Judge leaning out the front window:

Many thanks to Emma, Theresa, and Lu for sharing the news–you can see other videos and screencaps, as well as all the latest news from the filming of On Stranger Tides–on the Zone’s News & Views forum.

ON STRANGER TIDES–Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz rehearse a dance! New photos

Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz continue work on Rob Marshall’s Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides; photographers snapped the two at sea aboard the Queen Anne’s Revenge, rehearsing a scene that appears to be a dance between Captain Jack Sparrow and Angelica, the woman from his past. To see a larger version of the photo at left, CLICK HERE, and to see another shot of the rehearsal, CLICK HERE. Notice that Captain Jack Sparrow’s beloved bottle of rum is prominently featured in both pictures! You can see the actors chatting with the crew HERE.

Many thanks to Evochka for sharing the pictures! You can read more about the filming of On Stranger Tides on the Zone’s News & Views forum, and a discussion of the pictures on the Pit General Discussion forum.

First photos of Johnny Depp and Penelope Cruz in ON STRANGER TIDES!

For the first time since filming began on Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides in Hawaii in mid-June, photos have surfaced of star (and new bride) Penelope Cruz at work. The photo at left shows her walking down a beach with Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow. To see a larger version of the photo, CLICK HERE, and to see another view of the pair walking down the beach, CLICK HERE. Ms. Cruz’s fabulous costume is, as always, by Penny Rose, who has designed all four of the Pirates of the Caribbean films. Nice hat!

For a behind-the-scenes photo (but beware, a bit spoilery) of Captain Jack and the mysterious woman from his past, CLICK HERE, and for a shot of JD and Penelope chatting between takes, CLICK HERE. The Zone thanks Evochka, AnaMaria, and Emma for photos; you can read much more about On Stranger Tides on the Zone’s News & Views forum, and a lively discussion of the latest photos on the Pit General Discussion forum. Radar has a set of 33 photos from the July 26th filming HERE, but beware of spoilers.

Captain Jack Sparrow appears (via 3D video) at ComicCon!

Disney had a surprise in store for those who attended the Tron Legacy panel at ComicCon on Thursday, July 22nd. At the end of the panel, Disney screened a teaser for Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides! Reports Silas Lesnick of, “Johnny Depp appeared as Captain Jack Sparrow in full 3D, sitting on the beach [in Hawaii, where On Stranger Tides is currently shooting] with a bottle of rum and speaking directly to the Comic-Con audience.” Here’s what Captain Jack told his audience:

“Hello, boys and girls . . .or whatever. My name is Captain Jack Sparrow. I take it some of you have heard of me. As you may well know, there are times — almost constantly, in fact — when I prefer to look at the world through the bottom of a glass.” (holding up a rum bottle) “Rum . . . something like this.

“You may have also heard whisperings and rumors, that Jack Sparrow be recruiting a crew to undertake a voyage to the Fountain of Youth. Not true! ‘Course not. But even if it weren’t not true, you wouldn’t be interested in joining me, would you, eh? No, thought not.

“I do admit, that there be varied and substantial dangers along the way, including, but not limited to, zombies, cutthroats, mermaids, and the vicious and vivacious Penelope Cruz. Which is why I’m not going. No, sir. Impossible to find the place anyway. No one knows where it is, plus I’d have to have a bloody map . . . or a bloody Mary . . . or both. Which is not a bad idea, in fact — bloody Mary.

“Bloody Marys all around! It’s on the Mouse.” (as he leaves) “Barman!”

Many thanks to FANtasticJD for breaking the news and for the screencap of Captain Jack, to Bermuda for a video of the ComicCon appearance, and to Theresa for the transcript of Jack’s remarks. It’s a pleasure to see him! You can read much more about Johnny Depp’s ComicCon appearance on the Zone’s News & Views forum. To see the Silas Lesnick article, CLICK HERE.

Announcing 5 new additions to the Zone’s Interview Archive!

For your summer reading pleasure, we’ve added five new articles to the Zone’s Johnny Depp Interview Archive. Four pieces are relatively recent, while one goes back to 1999. The new additions are:

November 19, 1999 – Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Luaine Lee — from the promotion for Sleepy Hollow when JD was a delighted new father

November 16, 2005 – Empire Online, Dan Jolin –- a Q&A during the promotion for The Libertine finds JD reflecting on the Earl of Rochester.

December 10, 2007 – New York Magazine, Logan Hill — from the promotion for Sweeney Todd, a brief Q&A with Johnny Depp and Tim Burton

June 28, 2009 – The Los Angeles Times, Rachel Abramowitz — a fine profile of JD from the promotion for Public Enemies

July 2009 – Vanity Fair, Douglas Brinkley — a substantial, in-depth profile by a wonderful writer; you will find insights here you cannot read anywhere else. Photos by Francois Marie Banier.

Many thanks to Theresa, Joni, and emma for the articles, and to Theresa for posting them. You can find the new additions HERE. Just click the links on the bottom of the page, and enjoy!

Producer Jerry Bruckheimer shares a picture of Captain Jack Sparrow

Producer Jerry Bruckheimer has kindly tweeted a picture of Johnny Depp in costume as Captain Jack Sparrow, standing in silhouette at the water’s edge in Hawaii. On stranger tides, indeed. You can find a much larger version of Mr. Bruckheimer’s photo of Captain Jack on his site HERE. Many thanks to Mr. Bruckheimer for sharing his photo–and we’d be delighted to see more! The Zone also thanks AnaMaria, Linny, and FANtasticJD for breaking the news; you can read more on the Zone’s News & Views forum.


Local residents with video cameras could not resist the chance to capture some footage when Rob Marshall brought the cast and crew of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides to film near the Blowhole at Halona Cove on Oahu on July 15th. Here’s a video posted on YouTube; you won’t see Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow, but there appears to be a glimpse of Geoffrey Rush as Barbossa. Beware, there be spoilers ahead:

Many thanks to gergnesdunk for posting the video and Emma for sharing it with the Zone.

Warner Bros. DARK SHADOWS, starring Johnny Depp, gets a new writer with vampire cred: Seth Grahame-Smith

The Tim Burton version of Dark Shadows, starring Johnny Depp as Barnabas Collins, has a new writer with a proven talent for blending diverse genres and dealing with creatures of the night: Seth Grahame-Smith, best-selling author of Abe Lincoln Vampire Hunter and Pride and Prejudice with Zombies. Mike Fleming at reports that Dark Shadows “is slated to begin production in January at Warner Bros. [with] Depp’s Infinitum Nihil and Graham King’s GK Films producing.” Fantastic news!

Infinitum Nihil and GK Films first announced that Johnny Depp would appear in Dark Shadows for Warner Bros. nearly three years ago (July 27, 2007). Producer Richard Zanuck later told the press of plans to film in the UK in the autumn of 2009, but with Tim Burton fully occupied with finishing his Alice in Wonderland, Dark Shadows was postponed.

According to Variety, Warner Bros. has not yet set a release date for Dark Shadows, but Dave McNary writes that the film “was included as one of the projects covered in a deal — announced in late April — between Imax and Warner Bros. to release up to 20 Warner films in Imax format through 2013.”

The Zone thanks Theresa and FANtasticJD for breaking the news; you can read much more about Dark Shadows on the Zone’s News & Views forum. The artist’s rendering of Johnny Depp as iconic vampire Barnabas Collins was done by Pat Carbajal and is available in the latest issue of Film Fantasy Magazine; to see a larger version, CLICK HERE. Many thanks to Shadowydog for sharing the scan.


Filming of Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides will shift to another iconic Hawaiian location for July 15th and 16th — Halona Cove, where the famous From Here to Eternity on-the-beach kiss between Burt Lancaster and Deborah Kerr was shot. The Department of Parks and Recreation told local media that the filming “will result in the closure of Halona Blowhole and the Koko Head Rifle range” on Thursday and Friday. “[T]he Halona Lookout and access to the adjacent cove will be off limits out of concern for public safety while the film crew works with large pieces of equipment. [. . .] The closure is also to keep camera views clear,” city officials told the Star-Advertiser.

The Koko Head Rifle Range will serve as base camp, housing the trucks and equipment for On Stranger Tides. The production company has offered to cover the cost of opening the rifle range on two future dates to make up for the closure on Thursday and Friday. “We’ll likely use the funds to keep open the range on two of the furlough days when it would normally have been closed,” Mayor Mufi Hannemann told the press. “We appreciate the public’s patience over the next two days.”

Locals report seeing crews placing interesting debris along the shoreline, but the only recent sighting of Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow was on a motorboat coming into Kalaeloa Harbor on Tuesday (July 13). To see a photo of JD on the boat, CLICK HERE; look for security chief Jerry Judge to the right.

The Zone thanks Emma and Bon Bon for the news and photo. You can read much more about the filming of On Stranger Tides on the Zone’s News & Views forum, but beware of spoilers!

Doors documentary WHEN YOU’RE STRANGE, narrated by Johnny Depp, receives an Emmy nomination

Congratulations to director Tom DiCillo, whose documentary When You’re Strange: A Film about The Doors aired as an episode of the PBS series American Masters last May — and has now been honored with an Emmy nomination for “Outstanding Achievement in a Non-Fiction Series.” Well done! Johnny Depp did the narration for When You’re Strange, which uses footage shot from 1965 until frontman Jim Morrison’s death in 1971 to tell the story of the band. “As a rock ‘n’ roll documentary, or any kind of documentary, for that matter, it simply doesn’t get any better than this,” Johnny told the press last year. “What an honor to have been involved. I am as proud of this as anything I have ever done.”

The Zone thanks Lu for sharing the news. When You’re Strange is available on DVD from Amazon, as is a soundtrack CD which includes great Doors music and tracks of Johnny Depp reading Jim Morrison’s poetry.

ONBC begins discussing Brian Selznick’s THE INVENTION OF HUGO CABRET today!

Oprah Noodlemantra’s Book Club, the oldest Johnny-Depp-related book club on the net, begins its discussion of Brian Selznick’s award-winning The Invention of Hugo Cabret today. Martin Scorsese is currently directing a major motion picture based on Selznick’s book and starring Sir Ben Kingsley, Sacha Baron Cohen, Asa Butterfield, and Chloe Moretz, with Jude Law, Ray Winstone, Christopher Lee, Helen McCrory, Frances de la Tour, Richard Griffiths, and Mathieu Amalric in supporting roles. Hugo Cabret is being produced by Scorsese, Graham King and Tim Headington (GK Films), and Johnny Depp (Infinitum Nihil). Christi Dembrowski, Infinitum Nihil’s president, is one of the film’s executive producers. That’s a very impressive group!

ONBC moderators Liz and DeppintheHeartofTexas have shared some fascinating background tidbits with us — you can find them on the ONBC forum. Stop by and join in the discussion; it’s a great chance to get acquainted with this fascinating story, which is set in the secret world of a Paris train station in the 1930s. The Invention of Hugo Cabret was a 2007 National Book Award Finalist for Young People’s Literature; it won the prestigious Caldecott Medal for achievement in illustration of children’s literature.

For each ONBC selection, Liz designs a special book jacket which incorporates Johnny Depp into the cover design. Here’s her charming design for The Invention of Hugo Cabret. You can find the ONBC discussion HERE. Many thanks to Liz and DITHOT for their outstanding work!

New photos of Johnny Depp on Kauai!

Casually dressed in crisp white, Johnny Depp enjoyed dinner with friends at the Dolphin Restaurant on the Hawaiian island of Kauai on Sunday night. The fourth Pirates of the Caribbean film, On Stranger Tides, is currently filming on the island. To see a larger photos of Johnny at the restaurant, CLICK HERE and HERE. The Zone thanks FANtasticJD for sharing the photos; you can read more about Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides on the Zone’s News & Views forum.

Angelina Jolie has good things to say about THE TOURIST–and Johnny Depp

Angelina Jolie, who is currently promoting her suddenly-very-timely spy thriller Salt, spoke to Ruben Nepales of The Philippine Inquirer about her most recent project, The Tourist, which finished shooting in Venice in May. Jolie said that the beautiful location attracted her to the role: “The reason I wanted to do the movie was Venice. I actually said, ‘I would like to find a nice film with a nice character but something that would be nice for my family.’ They said that there’s a film that shoots in Venice. I said, ‘Great, I’d like to read (the script of) that one.'”

Another selling point for Jolie was the chance to work with director Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck. “[W]e said that we have to find a great European director because we don’t want an American’s version of this European-style film. [The Tourist is based on the French thriller Anthony Zimmer.] Florian, who is one of my favorite directors, came on. I loved his The Lives of Others,” Jolie told Nepales. “I couldn’t believe that he would accept this film because it’s a lighter one. It’s a love letter to Venice in many ways.”

And what about working with her co-star, Johnny Depp, who plays the American tourist? “Johnny was just extraordinary,” Jolie replied. “He’s a sweetheart and a great actor.”

The Zone thanks Emma for breaking the news; you can read much more about The Tourist on the Zone’s News & Views forum. To read the entire Ruben Nepales interview with Angelina Jolie (which deals mostly with Salt), CLICK HERE. To see a larger version of the photo of Johnny Depp from The Tourist, CLICK HERE, and for a photo of Johnny Depp and Angelina Jolie at work, CLICK HERE.

Happy 7th anniversary to Captain Jack Sparrow and PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: THE CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL!

Believe it or not, it was exactly seven years ago today that Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl opened in movie theaters across North America, and the public got its first glimpse of Johnny Depp’s Captain Jack Sparrow. Critics were predisposed to sneer at a movie inspired by a theme-park ride — was there even one review that failed to highlight that fact, or to mention that the pirate movie was a dead genre? — but ecstatic word-of-mouth soon made the pundits and past history irrelevant. Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl eventually claimed box-office booty of $654 million worldwide, launched a pair of fantastically successful sequels, and lodged its colorful characters permanently in the popular imagination. Now Captain Jack Sparrow’s boast is true around the world: everyone has heard of him, and a 4th Pirates adventure, On Stranger Tides, is currently filming in Hawaii under the direction of Rob Marshall. Huzzah!

Johnny Depp’s performance in The Curse of the Black Pearl earned him an Oscar nomination and a SAG Award as Best Actor. “His performance is original in its every atom,” wrote Roger Ebert in his review. “There has never been a pirate, or for that matter a human being, like this in any other movie.” Critic Emmanuel Levy has called Captain Jack Sparrow “the only iconic screen character to have yet emerged in the new millenium.”

The Zone congratulates all of the dedicated artists who worked on Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl; you have given us more hours of pleasure and pure entertainment than we could possibly count. Many thanks to Jerry Bruckheimer, director Gore Verbinski, writers Terry Rossio & Ted Elliott, and those executives at Disney who decided not to fire Johnny Depp. And thanks, above all, to Johnny Depp himself . . . the best pirate we’ve ever seen.

We’re celebrating! It’s the Zone’s 6th birthday at this site!

Yes, this venture of Sleepy’s and mine has been underway for six full years now, continuing the Johnny Depp Zone tradition that has been operating in one form or another for more than 12 years. We officially opened the “new” Zone on July 9, 2004, the first anniversary of the release of Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. When we began the website, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory had just started shooting at Pinewood, Corpse Bride had just been announced, there were rumors Finding Neverland would finally be released in the fall, and Johnny’s production company, Infinitum Nihil, had just been formed. The Libertine was in post-production and headed for a work-in-progress showing at the Toronto Film Festival.

How time flies! Not only have we seen Finding Neverland, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Corpse Bride and The Libertine make their way into theaters, but we’ve watched every step of the production of the Pirates of the Caribbean sequels Dead Man’s Chest and At World’s End; we’ve heard Johnny sing his way to a Golden Globe win and an Oscar nomination in Sweeney Todd; we’ve seen him shoot up the screen as Dillinger in Michael Mann’s Public Enemies and charm us as the Mad Hatter in Tim Burton’s blockbuster Alice in Wonderland.

Now Johnny is busy filming his fourth Pirates of the Caribbean adventure, On Stranger Tides, for a new director, Rob Marshall, and we’re awaiting the release of three other films: Bruce Robinson’s version of The Rum Diary, the romantic thriller The Tourist with Angelina Jolie, and Gore Verbinski’s first animated feature, Rango. The year to come will surely be a busy and delightful one!

As we celebrate and reminisce today, I’d like to thank Sleepy and the Zone staff — Theresa, Joni, Shadow, AnaMaria, Liz, and DeppintheHeartofTexas — for their dedication and hard work. Without them, we wouldn’t have a Zone. Many thanks to everyone who has helped us along the way, and to all of our members for making the Zone a wonderful place to be. Thanks to mytreasure for the charming birthday card, and to Andre for his technical wizardry. Most of all, thanks and much love always to Johnny Depp, for being a continual source of inspiration and delight–he’s the reason we’re here!

Forget that casting rumor–Johnny Depp will NOT play a rock star in SONNY BOY

The Internet has been buzzing this week with rumors that Johnny Depp would be playing “a rock star” in a movie supposedly called Sonny Boy. British tabloid The Sun cooked up the story, which had a promising plot reminiscent of Eddie and the Cruisers (1983) — the paper claimed Johnny’s rock-star character has a hit with a cover version of a dead artist’s song, but then begins to suspect that the original artist is still alive and sets out to find him. Too bad it’s all fiction. Internet fact-checking site Gossip Cop has debunked the Sun’s story: “A rep for the actor tells Gossip Cop that the casting ‘news’ is ‘not true,'” the website reports.

The Zone thanks Diana J and Theresa for the news; you can read Gossip Cop‘s article HERE. Many thanks to Gossip Cop for investigating the rumor and getting the truth.

“It’s fantastic”–Jerry Bruckheimer talks about PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 4: ON STRANGER TIDES

Producer Jerry Bruckheimer, promoting his new release The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, graciously answered a few questions from’s Josh Horowitz about Pirates of the Caribbean 4: On Stranger Tides, which is currently filming in Hawaii. “We’re starting our third week on it,” Mr. Bruckheimer said. “I’ve been there, and it’s fantastic.”

MTV: This is as big a franchise as there is. To come back to it in this way, with a different director, does it feel like a different take on the Pirates franchise thanks to Rob Marshall’s input?

Jerry Bruckheimer: No. Rob has figured out the tone of Pirates and is playing right into what the other three pictures were. So he “gets it.” And you know, he was a dancer and a choreographer before he was a director, so he loves movement. So we have a lot of movement fun in it.

The 4th Pirates film also has a new female lead: Oscar winner Penelope Cruz. Can the producer disclose what the chemistry between Captain Jack Sparrow and Blackbeard’s daughter will be like?

Jerry Bruckheimer: I haven’t really seen a scene between all of them yet–they might have filmed one this weekend but I haven’t seen the dailies on it yet. But I’m excited to see that, because she’s so fiery and fun. I can just imagine how the screen is going to sizzle with the two of them on it.

Kevin McNally, who has played Mr. Gibbs in all the Pirates films, was asked by Inside Kent magazine how it feels to return to his role as Captain Jack’s loyal friend. “It was an honour to be asked back again, as some of the other characters unfortunately will not return,” said McNally. “When I looked at the script I felt it was more along the lines of the first film and I was pleased with the development of the character.”

The Zone thanks Theresa and AnaMaria for sharing the news about On Stranger Tides; you can read much more on the Zone’s News & Views forum. A video of Mr. Bruckheimer’s interview is available on MTV HERE.

Cameras roll in London for Martin Scorsese’s HUGO CABRET

Oscar winner and cinema treasure Martin Scorsese is now filming Hugo Cabret in London; adapted by Tony winner and Oscar nominee John Logan from Brian Selznick’s award-winning children’s book, The Invention of Hugo Cabret, the film is being produced by Scorsese, Graham King and Tim Headington (GK Films), and Johnny Depp (Infinitum Nihil). IN president Christi Dembrowski is one of the film’s executive producers. Scorsese has assembled a splendid cast, led by Sir Ben Kingsley, Sacha Baron Cohen, Asa Butterfield (The Boy in the Striped Pajamas), and Chloe Moretz (Kick-Ass), with Jude Law, Ray Winstone, Christopher Lee, Helen McCrory, Frances de la Tour, Richard Griffiths, and Mathieu Amalric in supporting roles. The production staff includes many familiar, Oscar-winning names: director of photography Robert Richardson, production designer Dante Ferretti, set decorator Francesca Lo Schiavo, costume designer Sandy Powell, and editor Thelma Schoonmaker.

Hugo Cabret will be filmed at London’s Shepperton Studios as well as on locations in London and Paris. It is scheduled for a December 9, 2011 release in North America by Sony Pictures.

The Zone thanks Emma for sharing the news; you can read more about the filming of Hugo Cabret on the Zone’s Porch forum.

Brian Selznick’s novel, The Invention of Hugo Cabret, is ONBC’s current selection. Liz and DeppintheHeartofTexas are offering fascinating tidbits about the book on the ONBC forum; the discussion begins July 12th.

No DOCTOR WHO movie with Johnny Depp–just a rumor

Fans of the legendary British sci-fi series Doctor Who got a jolt when rumors began circulating on the Internet claiming that (a) the franchise was about to spawn a major motion picture and (b) Johnny Depp would become the twelfth actor to play The Doctor. Not true, reports; the site checked with the BBC, which has produced the series since 1963, and the network says there’s no Doctor Who movie in the works, period. “We checked with the BBC, and a rep says there are ‘no plans for a Who movie, and any talk is ‘pure speculation,'” says That’s hardly a surprise, since pure speculation is one of the things the web does best.

Props to for checking with the BBC, and also for this lovely Photoshop of Johnny Depp as the Doctor. To see JD with the TARDIS, CLICK HERE, but do remember it’s a fake! The Zone thanks Emma for breaking the news, and for their reporting; you can read their story HERE.