Acting, RANGO, and Hunter S. Thompson: A new interview with Johnny Depp

Jake Hamilton–otherwise known as “Jake the Movie Guy”–conducted one of the freshest and most original interviews with Johnny Depp during the Rango press junket last weekend. Here are a few of Jake’s probing questions and Johnny’s thoughtful replies:

Q: I think one of the things that I most love about Rango is that he’s an actor, and he takes pride in being an actor. And I feel like he almost feels more comfortable in the skins of his characters than he does in his own skin. Is that something you relate to? Do you feel more comfortable in your characters than you do as yourself?

JOHNNY DEPP: Oh, yes. That’s one of the dangerous pitfalls of doing this kind of thing for a living, is that you feel infinitely more comfortable in the skin of your character, on camera, doing whatever weirdness you’re doing, than you do in life. It makes sense, you know, when throughout 365 days of a year, you’re saying somebody else’s words more than you are [saying] yours. It’s kind of strange.

Q: Is there a character of yours that you could walk around, every day, as that character and feel comfortable? That you would choose to do that? Is there one in particular?

JOHNNY DEPP: Well, there’s one in particular that comes back to me quite a lot, just because you get in certain situations . . . and you just don’t feel that you’re capable of handling that situation as you. And the one guy that comes back is this sort of protector. This great protector has been Raoul Duke [from Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas], the Hunter S. Thompson character. He tends to come back a lot.

Q: Speaking of Hunter S. Thompson, that’s one of my favorite films of yours, and one of my favorite performances, so naturally it was a treat for me to be able to kind of see him in the movie . . . . And I kind of feel like, in a way, there’s a bit of Mr. Thompson in Rango, because they’re both kind of searching for this dream, they’re looking for hope . . . . Do you feel there’s a bit of Hunter S. Thompson in Rango?

JOHNNY DEPP: Yeah, sure . . . there was definitely a sort of reptilian edge to Hunter, certainly. [chuckling] And yeah, you do feel like there’s a . . . first, for me, I just thought it was a great idea to have two characters that I’ve played meet in a film. Yeah, Hunter’s sort of quest for the American dream is very similar to Rango’s quest for whatever . . . his sojourn to find himself.

The full Jake Hamilton interview is posted on You Tube; many thanks to Serendipity for sharing it with the Zone. Thanks also to HonestGirl for the photo of Johnny at Monday’s press conference for Rango; you can see a larger version of the photo HERE. As always, you can read much more about Rango on the Zone’s News & Views forum!