It's a pirates life for Johnny Depp

Last Updated: Tue, Jul 04, 2006 04:17 hrs

A life with no bounds. A freewheeling career. It's a pirate's life for actor Johnny Depp, both inside and outside of Hollywood. Depp, 43, is known for quirky roles in movies like "Ed Wood" and "Edward Scissorhands." Perhaps his best-loved part is flamboyant Capt. Jack Sparrow in the "Pirates of the Caribbean" movies. The newest version, "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest," hits theaters on Friday.

For the new film, Depp said that stepping back into Capt. Jack's boots was as natural as everyday life. "It was funny just simply going through that process again" of getting back into the character," Depp told reporters recently. "Going through make-up and hair and buckling myself into the costume ... just felt so natural and normal." A pirate is rugged and fearless, but in 2003's original "Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl," Depp's Capt. Jack bordered on swishy, even slightly effeminate.

The actor has said his style of nautical ne'er-do-well mixed the rock 'n' roll swagger of Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards with the romantic longing of cartoon skunk Pepe LePew, but Capt. Jack was still as freewheeling as any pirate could be. Audiences loved him. While the handsome actor had enjoyed a long career starting with the 1980s TV drama "21 Jump Street," only one of his films over the next decade was a blockbuster, 1999's "Sleepy Hollow." "Curse of the Black Pearl" changed that. It grossed $654 million worldwide and earned Depp an Oscar nomination -- an honor that had eluded him until then, despite critical success in movies such as "What's Eating Gilbert Grape."