Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides is finally here and that means one important thing… that’s right, Depp is back in his pirate gear as the Captain of the Billion Dollar blockbuster who we all love because somehow he manages to stay cool and low-key despite his acclaim. Johnny Depp is undeniably one of the biggest stars in Hollywood, but even when he’s talking to a large room filled with press, he still has that subtle charm and peculair sense of humor that makes you feel like you’re just shooting the sh*t with a friend and reminds your why he keeps going — he’s just so damn cool!
Depp as always gave some extremely fun, off the wall answers to all sorts of questions including what it was like working with Penelope Cruz again, bringing in new director Rob Marshall, his role in The Lone Ranger, and how he just keeps trying to get himself fired, but it just NEVER works…
What It’s Like Being Johnny Depp:
How was this experience for you, coming back to this character, being loved by so many people, making yet another soon to be very successful film?
Johnny Depp: It’s – well, it’s pretty psychedelic, actually. Yeah, I supposed you could make it even more psychedelic but we probably shouldn’t go into that now but, yeah, the idea of wondering through this ride and suddenly there you are three times. It’s quite an honor in a weird way. It’s a great honor. Some sort of thing that you took part in creating becomes this forever sort of object.
A long time ago in an interview you said “none of my films will ever be successful” how do you feel about that now that you’re a part of multiple top grossing films of all time?
Johnny Depp: It’s not my fault. I did my best, even to the point of trying to get fired on the first one and they just couldn’t bring themselves to do it. No, it’s kind of interesting to experience that kind of ride after well, essentially 20 years of enjoying a career based on failures and then suddenly something clicks. The weird thing is, I never changed a thing. The process is still the process as it ever was. The fact that people decided to go and see a movie that I was in was probably the most shocking thing that I’ve ever been through.
Male Speaker: And do you see yourself hanging on, doing this for decades, or?
Johnny Depp: Yeah, I think they could wheel me in, yeah. Might have my dreads get tangled in the wheels of my chair. I don’t know, I mean, sure. Interestingly enough, for me, character like Captain Jack, you feel like you could just like continue. The possibilities are endless, limitless, you could – there’s any possibility of madness and absurdity that could commence. So you feel with this character you feel you’re never really done.
Do you think that you live through the character of Captain Jack, he lives through you, or at this point are you the same person? What’s your connection?
And in terms of any connection to the character of Captain Jack, was that it? We’re completely – we’re totally different. [Laughs] Nothing that I can relate to in Captain Jack whatsoever. With every character you play, as these guys will tell you, any character you play, there’s a part of you goes into that in terms of the ingredients of making this stew. There’s most definitely a part of me in Captain Jack and now, fortunately, or unfortunately, there’s a great part of Captain Jack in me as well. Basically, I can’t shake it. He won’t leave me alone. He just sort of keeps showing up at odd times. In fact, he arrived this morning when I was getting my kids ready for school. I had to shoo him away.
Would you ever want to direct?
Johnny Depp: Oh, yeah. No, no, I tried that once. Yeah, first one’s free. No, no, if I ever thought of directing again , I mean – I don’t know, even the idea of directing a film is a strange one for me, because I sort of – I feel kind of anti mathematics in a way in the that sense. Anti – I don’t like when things make sense, I prefer if they don’t so if I made a film it wouldn’t make any sense and no one would see it. So maybe I’ll just make little films at home with my phone never to be released.
Working on Pirates 4:
How was working with a new director on this film? Rob just entered the project but you’ve been a part of it for so long, what was that like?
It was incredible to experience because it’s sort of like a – some film makers go into a film, and they’ve got it all, it’s already shot in their head, it’s cut. It’s shot and cut in their head. I didn’t get that feeling from Rob. What I got from Rob was that he heard it as music in a weird way or rhythmic, and sort of new tempo, and a kind of way to finesse the sound or a way which became obviously vision as well, but it was an incredible experience. He’s unbelievably – his timing, and that’s not just to say choreographic timing or anything like that.
But his sense of comedic timing is impeccable. He would have us just shave like an eighth, just an eight of a millisecond, just a tiny little sliver off of a beat, and it would change the whole dynamic of the scene, it was quite something. The only problem is he’s really mean. He’s really mean. Look at him. Look at how mean he is. He’s the kindest man alive.
And then with Penelope, it’s been a few years since you guys have worked together, was it nice to reunite? Did she manage to teach you some Spanish finally?
Johnny Depp: She taught me the raunchiest Spanish. I mean, it’s so foul that I couldn’t bring myself to repeat it here and now. No, no, I think it’s a bad idea. I’d carry that on my back for the rest of my days. I mean, going to work with Penelope again, having done to the film Blow together ten, eleven years ago, something like that, was – well the weird thing, it felt like when we saw each other, it felt like we’d wrapped the film Blow like a week before or a few days before.
It just sort of clicked instantly so that this whatever exists in terms of chemistry, was just instantly firing on all cylinders. It felt completely right, and it was Rob’s brilliant idea to bring her in and I think when he brought up the idea to me, he maybe got out the consonant and I went, “great idea.” So I was very, very excited to have Penelope come into the this film. I knew that she would be not only a worthy opponent but someone who could just kill the scenes and she did. She was incredible. So, yeah, no, that’s all in very good shape. And then Rob Marshall, what a gift to have someone of his caliber, someone of his talent to come in and drive this beast, and shape this strange animal into something.
Next Projects and Pirates 5&6 on the way (it’s NEVER ENDING):
How does your role in Lone Ranger compare to Jack Sparrow?
Johnny Depp: I mean I feel like what we’re creating in these story meeting and script meetings in terms of character and in terms of story, yeah, I couldn’t say you could compare it to Pirates but I supposed tonally there is a relationship because there is a kind of fascination with the absurd that’s involved in The Long Ranger as well, semblance of a reverence. But you need that, right, you’ve got to have that.
And as for taking the next two films seriously, Depp doesn’t seem to be too concerned about that….
Johnny Depp: What I was going to say before is there’s the very clever idea that is being hatched in terms of Pirates 5 and 6 where you’re going to actually shoot them on the ride. Just going around in circles, non-stop kind of like Andy Warhol’s Sleep. Just close shots on everyone.
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides hits theaters May 20th!