Johnny Depp Movies: Is The ‘Pirates’ Actor’s Career Going Stale?

Johnny Depp movies are getting poorer and poorer receptions, it seems. Could the Pirates of the Caribbean actor just not have the appeal he once did?

Transcendence seems to be the new norm for the man who made 21 Jump Street famous, and even made an uncredited cameo in the big screen adaptation.

A decade ago, Johnny Depp could have starred in practically anything and made it an instant success. Pirates of the Caribbean was a phenomenal success, and even Edward Scissorhands was a classic. Tim Burton really used Johnny Depp in almost everything except Batman, and nearly every time, audiences couldn’t get enough.

At some point in the last few years, Depp just stopped being able to bring in the usual audience. Perhaps it was Alice in Wonderland that finally convinced the fans that he wasn’t up to his usual par? Maybe it all started with PotC: At World’s End? It was a confusing mess of a film, with Captain Jack Sparrow visibly descending into madness, every villain we’d seen before suddenly vying for a piece of the action, and a romance that seemed to be shoehorned in as a sidenote. Somewhere between those films, it seems audiences finally gave up on Johnny Depp movies.

The effect could be seen in the lack of interest directed at everything he’s done since, from Sweeney Todd to Transcendence. The considerable loss in box office success is reflected most in the latter, which features an ambitious cast such as Morgan Freeman, Cilian Murphy (both from Christopher Nolan’s Batman series), and Paul Bettany (the voice of JARVIS in the Iron Man films). Could audiences simply not care any more? Not even the infamous Captain Jack Sparrow was enough to make audiences care about Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.

Transcendence was only good enough to rank in fourth place, up against Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Rio 2. The critics slammed it, generating only a 20 percent “fresh” ranking on Rotten Tomatoes. It could have easily been Depp’s comeback, but it tanked.

It may be time for directors to finally admit that Johnny Depp movies aren’t automatically going to generate an audience any more. When Dwayne Johnson brings in audiences more easily than Johnny Depp, it appears something has gone wrong. Has Depp finally lost his charm, or is Hollywood just making mediocrity the new rule?

Are you still a fan of Johnny Depp’s movies?