He has become famous for his portrayal of strange and eccentric characters.
Welcome to Watchmojo.com, and today we'll be taking a look at the career of
actor Johnny Depp.
Johnny Depp was born on June 9th, 1963 in Owensboro, Kentucky. At only 12 years
old he developed a passion for music, which would later lead him to drop out of
high school and move to Hollywood. There his dream of becoming a rock star
shifted to acting.
Depp made his feature-film debut as a boy eaten by a killer bed in the 1984 Wes
Craven horror flick “A Nightmare on Elm Street”. Depp followed this by playing
the more defined role of a Vietnamese-speaking private in Oliver Stone’s
Despite a mildly successful entry into film, Depp experienced a long period
without work. This forced him to half-heartedly seek out the lead role of Tom
Hanson Jr. on the 1987 undercover cop series "21 Jump Street". The TV show
lasted more than one season, and became a phenomenon that transformed him into a
teen idol of the late 80s. To the shock of his co-stars and fans alike, Depp
publicly showed signs that he hated his new position as a heartthrob, and so he
unsuccessfully tried to exit his lucrative contract.
Four years later, when "21 Jump Street" finally ended its run, Depp began a
career-defining association with director Tim Burton, as Burton presented him
with the opportunity to take on the bizarre, yet isolated role of Edward
Throughout the 90s, Depp appeared in several other films that also benefited
from his dedication to portraying isolated and misunderstood personalities.
These projects included a string of successful movies, such as "What’s Eating
Gilbert Grape?", "Benny And Joon", "Donnie Brasco", as well as his exceptionally
eccentric portrayal of writer Hunter S. Thompson in 1998’s "Fear And Loathing in
During the 90s, Depp also took the opportunity to re-team with Tim Burton for a
heartfelt tribute to the world's worst film director, Ed Wood. This project
earned Depp a great amount of critical acclaim, as well as a Golden Globe
nomination. And in 1999, Burton pleaded with the studios to allow Depp to play
police constable Ichabod Crane in his high-profile project "Sleepy Hollow".
Yet, despite Depp’s previous collaborations with Tim Burton, the film role that
made him an undisputed Hollywood heavyweight and brought him his first Academy
Award nomination for Best Actor was that of eccentric pirate Captain Jack
Sparrow in 2003’s “Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl.” He
would revisit that role several more times, with each sequel further dominating
the box-office. Meanwhile, Depp would secure a second Oscar nomination for Best
Actor for his role in the 2004 British/American semi-biographical film "Finding
As Depp continued to be a Hollywood sensation throughout the 2000s, he remained
close with Burton and they continued to produce several offbeat films together,
such as "Corpse Bride", "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory" and his Academy
Award nominated role in the 2007 horror musical "Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber
of Fleet Street".
In 2010, Tim Burton and Johnny Depp yet again paired up to create the dark,
highly stylized masterpiece “Alice in Wonderland”, this time with Depp in the
leading role of the Mad Hatter.