“Has America fallen out of love with Johnny Depp?” is the title of an L.A. Times article from last year in which Steven Zeitchik pondered whether the star’s string of box office and critical failures in 2012 signaled the end of a career full of fanfare. Now that 2013’s The Lone Ranger is bombing hard, the conversation has come up once again.
The latest “Johnny Depp’s career is moribund” rumor comes from Deadline, and suggests that the 50-year-old actor is wrapping up talks to reprise his role as The Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland 2.
The news caused The Huffington Post to lament, “Maybe the old Johnny Depp is gone after all.”
The 2010 Tim Burton-directed Wonderland was so-so for critics, but a huge box office win. A possible sequel has been in the pipeline since December of 2012, with Muppets director James Bobin stepping in for Burton this time around.
Though Depp was attached to the role back when the sequel was announced, the apparent fact that he’s closing the deal for yet another franchise has us on pause.
He’s already available for future Lone Ranger films (though sequels are incredibly unlikely) and will be in Pirates 5, as well. He is also signed on for Into the Woods and the Christopher Nolan-produced film Transcendence, and gee we hope that Lone Ranger isn’t a sign of another horrible year for Depp.
In May 2012, Zeitcheck wrote:
“Next up for Depp is The Lone Ranger, which hits theaters in May 2013. it will be the ultimate test of Depp’s appeal. Few stories get more American than that. And Depp has never seemed like less of a U.S. favorite.”
Did Johnny Depp fail that test? Is Alice in Wonderland 2 something he should just pass on, or would you like to see him play The Mad Hatter again?