Best Johnny Depp Characters

Not only is Johnny Depp a great actor, he has also created some extremely memorable characters over the years.  He just repriced his role as one of his best-loved characters of all time in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,
Although Captain Jack Sparrow is by all accounts an bad dude, Depp plays him with such charm and wit, you can’t help but love him.
Depp has a knack for playing strange and lovable characters, from the Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland to Edward Scissorhands.  He always gives his all to his performances, which is why he is one of the most beloved actors in the business.

Check out our list of Best Johnny Depp Characters and let us know — what’s your favorite?


10. Roux in Chocolat (2000)

No stranger to playing a pirate, Depp played one in Chocolat long before he immortalized Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean.  He plays Roux, a pirate shunned from a small Parisian town full of straight-laced Catholics.  He bonds with the another outcast Vianne, who comes to the village and dares to open a bakery during lent.  Depp is charming and rugged in this role and it is one of his the first charming leading man roles in his early career.

9. George Jung in Blow (2001)

In a hard-hitting role, Depp plays George Jung, the man who introduced the cocaine market in the U.S.  His performance is gritty and real; he really captures the essence of the character and brings him to life. 

8. Victor Van Dort in Corpse Bride (2005)

Although he doesn’t physically appear in Corpse Bride, sometimes it’s harder to create a great character and a multi-dimensional story-line through just a voice.  Johnny Depp manages to do that in the film playing Victor, a shy groom who decides to practice his wedding vows in the presence of a dead women.  The woman rises from the grave and assumes she is going to marry him.  Depp plays the character with a shy and lovable grace.  He really can do a lot with his voice.

7. Rango in Rango (2011)
Another instances where Depp proves he has a great voice and can really deliver a great experience without his own expressions and body helping him.  Rango is one of the highest grossing animated films of the year and it’s mostly because of his performance as the lovable, but misguided Rango.  His range of tone and pitch bring a great dynamic energy to Rango and he proves, once again, he has the vocal chops to do both animated and live-action films.

6. Ichabod Crane in Sleepy Hallow (1999)

Depp plays Ichabod Crane, the investigator who is sent to Sleepy Hallow to look into the decapitation of three people assumed to be at the hands of the Headless Horseman.  He gets into the historical role with gusto and delivers another incredible performance in this spooky thriller.

This horror-musical shows off many aspects of Depp’s performing skills.  Not only does he have to ac, but he has to sing as well.  Depp plays Benjamin Barker a.k.a Sweeny Todd who opens a barber shop downtown, but not everything is as it seems in this barber shop.  Depp is equally creepy and brilliant in this role.

Depp plays the lovable and completely bizarre Willy Wonka in this crazy remake from director Tim Burton.  He is eccentric and crazy in this version and his wacked out appearance is just the beginning of his crazy personality.  Depp does a great job of bringing on the insane moments and devotes himself to getting every weird tick just right.

3. Edward Scissorhands in Edward Scissorhand (1990)

Perhaps one of Depp’s most beloved performances, the young actor plays Edward Scissorhands, a human with a mutation that includes scissor where his hands should be, Edward is gentle and polite, but he scares people with his hands.  He comes to live with a family who learns to accept him for who he is.  Depp plays Edward with such grace and naivete, you can’t help but love him.  He shows the vulnerable side of Edward and really captures the essence of what’s inside the character, despite his scary outward appearance.

2. Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland (2010)

Similar to his Willy Wonka performance, Depp pulls out all the stops to play the Mad Hatter in Alice in Wonderland — and he is MAD.  Depp creates a memorable character that highlights all the craziness, yet the completely lovable side of this man who befriends Alice.  He is the first to recognize that she is the “real Alice” and remains a loyal and trustworthy friend to the end, despite his odd behavior.  Depp captures the essence of the Mad Hatter and gives his all to this memorable performance.

1. Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean 1, 2, & 3 (2003, 2004, 2007)

This could be Depp’s performance of a lifetime and one he personally loves so much, he’s repriced the role four times.  Depp plays Captain Jack Sparrow as a drunken fool that tries really hard to be bad, but deep down he is caring and nice.  The little oddities that make Sparrow tick are captured so well by Depp that you forget where the man ends and the character begins.  He stays true to his performance throughout the first three films and even though the other main characters (Knightley and Bloom) aren’t in this next installment, people won’t even notice because Depp shines so brightly above everyone else in his role as the lovable Captain.

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