Johnny Depp Finalizing ‘Alice in Wonderland’ Sequel Return

Published 2 years ago by

johnny depp alice wonderland Johnny Depp Finalizing Alice in Wonderland Sequel Return

One of the (relatively) more divisive elements that places director Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland apart from countless adaptation that’ve come before is the relationship between a nineteen-year-old Alice Kingsleigh (Mia Wasikowska) and WonderUnderland resident Mad Hatter (Johnny Depp). Burton, along with the film’s screenwriter Linda Woolverton, upgraded the Hatter’s importance in Alice’s story – and that was either detrimental or beneficial to the narrative, depending in part on how you feel about Depp’s interpretation (whose appearance and manner is meant to be a colorful allusion to someone with mercury poisoning).

Burton won’t be back to helm the Alice in Wonderland sequel (which Woolverton is writing), but it has long been anticipated that Depp will continue his $uccessful working relationship with Walt Disney Pictures and make an appearance in the film. Sure enough, reports are now in that the actor has entered final discussions to reprise as the Mad Hatter, well before any other cast members (new or returning) have been reported as being in negotiations.

Six weeks ago, we heard that Depp would be meeting with the Alice in Wonderland sequel’s potential director, James Bobin – who helmed The Muppets in addition to next year’s sequel Muppets Most Wanted (both for the Mouse House) – but it hasn’t been confirmed (yet) that a deal was reached with Bobin; though, chances are good that one has been. Regardless, a new Deadline exclusive does assert that Depp is working out the final details of his return for the Alice followup, as part of a multi-year first look deal with Disney that allows Depp to develop projects he can produce there (presumably, through his Infinitum Nihil banner?).

Deadline‘s insiders are claiming that Depp’s first-look deal was signed, sealed and delivered back in March, but has only just been announced in order to keep up his public appearance (and refute the claims made by some that Depp is no longer an in-demand star). In all fairness, there could be truth to that, when you consider the number of articles that’ve been published over the past week, focused on how Depp’s reputation as a likable, and bankable, actor is starting to crumble (following the disappointing turnout for Dark Shadows last year and The Lone Ranger last week).

lone ranger tonto johnny depp Johnny Depp Finalizing Alice in Wonderland Sequel Return

Johnny Depp as Tonto in ‘The Lone Ranger’

Depp’s last two films were, in this writer’s humble opinion, at least interesting revisionist takes on older properties (if also misguided and over-ambitious with their approach), while the actor himself gave solid performances in each movie, when judged on their own merits. Similarly, Depp has interesting projects on the horizon – like Wally Pfister’s sci-fi feature Transcendence and the stage musical adaptation Into the Woods next year – for those of us who aren’t really looking forward to his return as Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean 5 in 2015. So the claims that his career is doomed or damaged beyond repair seem like an over-reaction (to yours truly, anyway).

Having said that, Burton’s Alice in Wonderland – the debate about its strengths and flaws aside – was a pretty self-contained tale, and didn’t really suggest that there was unfulfilled potential for more stories (featuring either the film’s version of Alice or Depp as the Mad Hatter). Hence, until more information is provided about the story that Woolverton is putting together for the sequel, it might be for the best to keep your expectations low for this one.

Let us know what you think about Johnny Depp returning as the Mad Hatter for the Alice in Wonderland sequel (and your feelings about the project in general), in the comments section.


Expect more updates on the Alice in Wonderland sequel over the forthcoming months.

Source: Deadline

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  1. Depp is so overrated. I’d be curious to see a mosh up of all his characters into one. He’d probably be flat on the floor from all the makeup and costume design.

  2. I thought the original was terrible, but I suppose it did gross over a billion so I could see executives wanting to make a sequel. Can’t see it making nearly as much as the first one though.

    • Ur right @Mikey W. The 1st movie was absolute pants, the story, acting, cast and script and 3D visuals was just plain awful. Hopefully this sequel bombs at the box office, so there’s no more!

  3. And with this role Johnny Depp finalizes his place
    in film history as a man of a thousand faces.
    Unfortunately for Depp they’re all clowns.

    • Well said. I am sure it has been a calculated decision on his part, with a focus on marketing, but I believe it says something about an actor when he consistently hides behind makeup and costume, and lets those props contribute to the performance for him…

      • You may feel the abundance of props, makeup, and costumes detract from his acting ability, but it’s just a pile of garbage without a powerful character to animate it. Johnny Depp, like Jim Carrey, is just the sort of force of nature who can bring virtually any pile of rags and paint to life in a charismatic sort of way, like a surreal cartoon character yanked off the paper and into the real world.

        I respect that in him.

    • Chairperson of the National Clown-Boxers’ Association of America!

  4. And all of you guys are onto Adam Sandler? Give me a break

    • My sentiments exactly. The quality of his filmography puts most of his contemporaries to shame.

      • Ah, as of late…

        The Lone Ranger
        Dark Shadows
        Pirates of the Caribbean
        Alice in Wonderland
        Sweeney Todd
        Charlie and the Chocolate Factory


        • The first Pirates movie was good and Chocolate Factory was great too and followed the book at least (other than the stupid Wonka childhood flashbacks that never existed before).

          I can also say that I’ve enjoyed those two movies plus those of Depp’s that aren’t on your list while the only Sandler movies I’ve ever enjoyed were Zohan and Airheads, the latter of which he wasn’t even the main star, Brendon Fraser and Steve Buscemi were.

          • It was “Benny Spoiler” above who referred to Adam Sandler, and frankly, I don’t know why he brought him into the conversation. I’d guess that most of us here don’t think highly of Sandler, and I personally can’t stand him. I’d agree that Depp is the better actor, but that is not saying much. There are so many actors out there who are far more proficient, and they don’t need costume or makeup to contribute to their performance.

            • I should say that I sincerely believe Depp’s popularity began with the teenage girls when he was on 21 Jump Street, and that fanbase followed him to the movies. Being “cute” certainly helps in Hollywood.

              • I am a 21 old girl and I have no idea what you are talking about. So – probably not, sir. I have just witnessed his portrayal of all sorts of different unique characters from Edward Scissorshand, through Public Enemies, to, yes, Alice in Wonderland… and I could not say a negative thing about any of his performances. How other people do, I have no idea… I guess it originates from the complete inability of humans to appreciate other people’s success, to envy those that do things better than them… I think he always put his utmost effort into creating the most interesting characters – and it is usually his work that makes us watch the movies he is in… and no, no other actor could do what he does, even though I agree there are “better actors” out there… not in his field of acting though. Someone mentioned Jim Carrey here and I could not believe my eyes when I read that… that one actor actually never changes anything about the way he acts and I hate how he over-acts everything, even facial expressions… how can Depp be even compared to that?

          • Um, no, Sweeney Todd was most definitely NOT a “masterpiece”. It’s a veritable trainwreck.

            The opera from which the film was adapted is a masterpiece. The adaptation itself was pure garbage.

            That said, I have enjoyed MOST of Depp’s roles.. but the Alice in Wonderland film is one with which I was less than impressed. I wouldn’t put the blame on Depp for that, however. I would blame Tim Burton. While I liked his first films, progressively as his career has advanced I’ve grown to hate his output.

    • Tomato, tomahto. At least Sandler knows he is being a goof unlike Depp who thinks he is doing highfalutin quality work.

    • Sandler ranks up there as pretty retarded, too.

      • And Ben Stiller.

        • Some of these boys would seem to relate better to their audiences and reality if they wore beanies on their heads with propellers. At least we would know what we were getting before we watched their movies.

    • One has nothing to do with the other. Since Depp is a better actor and a different kind of actor, most of us expect more out of Depp.

      • Thank you for the distinction of having my name in quotations. Hats tipped to you, sir. Anyways, I absolutely hate Depp’s performances in Tim Burton’s films (which I also hate). Absolutely weird and creepy, like the films themselves. That being said, he is a rather talented actor when at his best. Pirates 1-2 were decent but could’ve been better and he was an absolute stand out. 3 was boring and mediocre and drawn out. 4 was awful. And his films as of late, much like Will Smith, have only been to bolster his movie star, and not movie actor, ego (please note ‘movie star’ and ‘movie actor’ are 2 completely different things) and get a huge paycheck. Sandler, on the contrary, needs a different crop of directors and screenwriters. Sandler is a very hilarious comedian and a pretty talented actor. Happy Gilmore remains his best film, and I may even say it’s better than anything Depp’s done. The rest of his filmography is composed of hilarious, decent not great entertainment (outside of the terrible Little Nicky, That’s my Boy, and Jack and Jill). Punch Drunk Love, Reign Over Me, and Funny People revealed a much different side. Now, I’d like to see both take on scene-stealing character roles, be the heads of tentpole big-budget films (more like Tropic Thunder than Pirates), and some dramatic work even. I can promise you these two are very talented. And Jim Carrey I don’t like in the least to be quite honest. For me, he’s way down on the list with Leonardo DiCaprio, Tom Cruise, and Nicolas Cage. Some of you may complain why I think this way and quite frankly, I can’t stand any of them. They either overact or underact. DiCaprio overemotes all the time or overdoes his accents. Cruise (apart from Tropic Thunder) is way too cocky and self-assured and just plain underacts. Nicolas Cage was the biggest fluke in National Treasure, among other ridiculous performances. And Carrey just plain overacts. Take it for what it is, but these are all my OPINIONS and I’m not forcing you to accept them or believe them so please take that into consideration


  6. I think Transcendence is going to confirm Depp as one of the biggest stars in the world for the next few years. Although we don’t have a vast amount of information on this project yet, it has a very strong cast, an interesting original plot and a director who has worked under one of the most critically acclaimed directors in recent years. This production is making all the right sounds for me.

    In response to Depp doing this sequel, well why wouldn’t he. It is a job in the end. Good pay plus a few extra benefits for producing some of his own stuff. Good business from Mr Depp in my eyes. I would expect the sequel to make around 450 – 550 mil. The studio should be sensible and only give a 150 mil budget, don’t be silly and give it a 250 mil budget, those films haven’t done too well for you mousey housey.

    • Add in the fact that Depp himself said in recent weeks that he can’t see himself acting for another decade (he’s currently 53 years old) and it makes sense he’d try to make more cash for himself and his kids in time for retirement.

      • And considering he now refuses any roles that might pay him less than $20 million. Maybe he DOES need the jobs.

  7. I think Johnny Dipp is just a kinko who likes dressing up funny. If I want to see that, I’ll just wait until Halloween and look out my window.

    • So actors like Kane Hodder, Ron Perlman, Doug Jones, Andy Serkis etc who dress up in costume for movie roles too in that weird assessment of actors playing roles that require makeup and costume?

      • Well, the Serkis Ape was better than the Circus monkey that Depp was, but he (Depp) sure tried harder to be a lower form of life from the evolutionary tree (still, alot of you did vote for Barack Obama, some twice{!!} proving that maybe the human brain has not developed as quickly as one would hope)! Darwin is spinning in his grave like a roto-rooter right about now.

        • And therein lies the problem…the workings of the human brain. We may differ on some issues, Goldilocks, but I am also bewildered that a slim majority of people voted for O not once, but twice…

          Absolutely perplexing, but an indication that emotion and ideology handcuff rationality in most people’s minds.

          • I’m sorry, on what Earth does Mitt Romney sound better than Barack Obama? You act like he was running against FDR.

            Romney, to me, seemed like another George W. Bush.

            • Romney is not Bush, and after Obama, Bush does not look so bad, either.

              Five years into Obama, and seven years into majority Democrat rule, including two years of complete Democrat rule, we have more people in poverty and on food stamps than ever before, unemployment hovering around 8%, and a national debt of close to 17 trillion dollars, not to mention multiple scandals, including spying on reporters, collecting records on masses of Americans, the IRS selectively auditing political opponents, an ambassador and other Americans murdered in Libya with not only no response from our government, but an attempt to cover up the reason why, and guns being sold by our government to known criminals in Mexico that have resulted in the death of an American border agent and multiple Mexican civilians. Had all this happened under a Republican administration, you lefties would be demanding impeachment and prosecution of the president, without a doubt!

              • I could also accuse O of being one of the most divisive presidents in history, inflaming divisions among classes and races of people, and I could also reference his dismal handling of foreign affairs, particulary Iran, North Korea, et. al., but I’ll give him a pass on the latter, since the Middle East has been in turmoil regardless of who has been in power.

                • If I were President, we would grab all those guys like Iran, North Korea, Syria, several other Middle Eastern and African Countries, and maybe even Venezuela, by the tail and swing ’em around like a whirling Dervish (and I do not fear China, Russia, or anyone else, either). I would not take CCCRRRAAAPPP on the world stage from Anybody.

              • That escalated quickly! Screenrant aka Politicalrant.

              • You’re calling me a lefty?

                I don’t give a flaming elephant or donkey about what party the President is in, Obama is not the high power. Congress is. Obama is their messenger, and they can’t seem to get along with each other. So if you want to blame a political power, you’d better understand who is really in charge.

                It could’ve been Romney, Obama, or even Herman Cain. Face the facts that we cannot instantly fix those problems with any of those men. The government did not all of a sudden become stupid when Obama was elected, it has been built up to this point.

                • “Obama is not the high power. Congress is.”

                  So then, the most recent recession was not caused by Bush’s policies, but by the House and Senate, which were controlled by Democrats for two years at the time. And again, they have held two of the three branches of government, or the majority of power, for seven years now.

                  Look, we agree that there are inept politicians in both parties, but Obama is among the most inept of them all, as he had two years of complete control and another three years of majority power, not to mention the loving affections of the mainstream media, yet our country is arguably in more shambles now than ever before.

                  Anyway, no offense meant Ultimate ACW, but you touched a nerve when questioning my and Goldilocks’ comments. He admittedly should not have brought politics into this discussion, however, and I should not have responded, since I was already in agreement with him. Let’s get back to the movies…

                  • Agreed, it’s not worth arguing over. My apologies

                  • …movies {grumble, mutter, burble)…oh yeah, why we’re here. Right. Well, OK. {dusts self off after little flaring dust-up}.

            • I supported McCain whole-heartedly, with money, lobbyinmg, newspaper editorials, and more. I also supported romney (less ardently, I will admit). While a big McCain fan most of the time, I am not so much a Romney fan, but I saw what a disaster another Obama administration was going to be, or a Congress controlled by the Democrats. So I supported nothing but Republican candidates the last two elections. In the places where democrats have taken over or stayed in office or whatever, my fears have proved to be a scary reality. It is gonna take a long time and alot of miracles to unsnarl the mess of the Obama & Co. years (thanks, guys who voted Democratic, for rocking my world like a nasty blaster inside a heated sauna when the door is stuck so I can’t breathe! Do you import stupidity???).

          • I work as a cashier for a Wal-Mart store in upper Michigan, and when Obama ran against McCain (I was a big McCain supporter), I told a number of our employees who were “Big O” supporters I could prove we were a Republican store (the store was actually about evenly divided). I went out into the aisles, and collected a cab of “Bush’s Baked Beans” and a package of “McCain Onion Rings”, and brought them back to the lounge, where I challenged my detractors to find a product espousing the virtues of the Democratic Party or any of their candidates. They could not (although I think that is when they threw me bodily out of the lounge!!).

            • You know, I wanted McCain as well, but I knew Obama had it just because he was good with a crowd.

              Nothing about Romney made me think he was going to be a suitable President. Not because of the party he stood for; because it was like he wanted to make himself lose. If the Republicans had a better representative, different story.

  8. “Oh he had two flops, that means he’s losing bankability!”

    One of those went up against The Avengers and the other had a ridiculous budget and a limited audience to begin with. I’m not a fan of all of his films, but I do think he’s a solid actor and it is an over- reaction.

    • Can’t use The Avengers as an excuse for Dark Shadows being a bad movie. Avengers could’ve released later and it still would’ve flopped.

      • Avengers was pretty good for a first attempt at putting all those heroes together (Ok, a couple flaws, but still very entertaining!).
        The travesty that was the Depp dark Shadows was an abomination and an insult to those of us who were raised on and swear by the original 60s/70s series. We just swear at the Depp version.

    • 3 straight flops
      Let’s not forget the rum diaries

      • No, LETS forget the Rum Diaries.

  9. All his performances are solid. Dark Shadows wasn’t a good movie but that’s Tim Burton’s fault and the script’s, not Johnny. His performance as Barnabas, also now as Tonto, is spot on.
    I don’t have interest in Alice 2, but without Burton we could expect a different approach and that give me hopes. Also it said the sequel is called “Through the looking glass” so it’s obvious, that whatever they are doing with the script, they are taking that book as inspiration

    • Burton needs a woodshedding as well!

  10. Depp jumped the shark. Same odd character in every movie

  11. Disney, stop with this crap and make a John Carter sequel already.

    • I loved John Carter, great film.

      Pity it did not do so well.

      • Yeah. I do not expect a sequel, but I enjoyed John Carter more than almost any other such big-scale film of the last few years, and from an objectively critical standpoint I rate it higher in quality of craft than most of the other huge 2012 films. Pity indeed that it tanked financially.

  12. The phrase “cash grab” comes to mind. Dear god, it’s like The Lost World all over again…

  13. Alice in Wonderland was a total surprise for me.

    Other than Edward Scissorhands I find most of Burton’s work to be great visually but he drops the ball in every other department.

    But Alice in Wonderland was a terrific film. That would also be the reason it took a billion dollars.

    • Blame the writers for Depp’s failure. I kinda blame the failure on Ted Elliot,Terry Rossio and Justin Haythe on the failure of the Lone Ranger
      POTC 5 could save the Franchise and make Depp a bigger star since he is failing now but no details so far?Are we set for disappointment?
      I enjoyed Alice in Wonderland. It was exciting,emotional and Depp’s performance was one of the best and one of the more weirder performances. I thought it was great
      But a sequel is in my opinion doing a sequel to is like Finding Dory. It could be great or it could ruin it for everybody.
      Transcendence looks interesting and Depp might have a finally more intelligent film.

      • I agree with you completely… and I still do not get what is ppl’s problem with Alice in Wonderland… it was a much better adaptation of the original story than the original itself… I used to hate the story because of the original. Now I love it because of Johnny Depp and Anne Hathaway in the movie… So, in this sense, the movie was, indeed, successful.

        Plus, I loved how there was this tension between Alice and the Mad Hatter… I would love to see the development of their relationship in the future.

        • Me too Johnny Depp and Mia Wasikowska were very good, they both were cute as couple in the movie Alice in Wonderland, I wanted them to be together in the second film.
          Sorry my english is because I’m Brazilian then I dont know speak very well English.

    • Thanks someone who actually enjoyed Alice in Wonderland

  14. I’ve never been a fan of Depp so much as I am of Tim Burton, who likes to constantly use Johnny in a major role and so I do respect the filmography that tags along.

    Depp CAN be a great actor, he’s proven that before. However, he keeps signing on to the worst kinds of projects lately. They SOUND interesting, but in the end they’re either average or below average.

    It’s not like Depp has been in something as big as “The Nightmare Before Christmas” though. I don’t consider him to be a “gigantic” master of the theatre. I’d say that title belongs to Daniel Day-Lewis. Depp is just living off of these projects and it’s his interest in them that’s killing him. Which also furthers the dark truth of studios revolving around money and giving quality the cold shoulder.

    • I find the Corpse Bride much bigger than the Nightmare before Xmas, which was made in a few days (in that sense, an absolute masterpiece)… if you want to speak about animated Burton’s movies…

  15. Great, another tentpole movie for Depp….

  16. I agree that rumors of Depp’s demise as a reliable box-office draw are probably exaggerated, and he is certainly not the worst thing going in the film industry right now. That being said, I do find myself rolling my eyes every time I see his name in the cast of a new project, particularly set to play essentially the same character that he always plays, just transposed into a different genre. Enough already, people. But whatever.

  17. Jack Sparrow in Wonderland 2 ! Really John, the last roles were all Sparrowish could you please move on ?

  18. All you need to do is read some quotes he’s made in interviews. He seems like a bit of an airhead. Anyone can be naturally quirky, it’s not exactly an art form. Jim Carey would have made a better Jack Sparrow.

  19. I see an awful lot of ugly people in this forum with some really horrible thoughts. Have you stopped for a second to think if you actually have a right to criticize someone who accomplished so much as an actor to call Depp a clown? Are your lives so exemplary that you can spend your day looking at faults in other people? I find that horrifying. Truly. How does the world expect people to have even a pinch of kindness left within themselves when they are just full of jealousy?

    I, for one, love all Tim Burton’s movies, especially the ones with Depp in them. And though most of Depp’s roles are extravagant, I would like to see other people pull that. Besides, he did several serious, non-extravagant roles in his life to generalize what he did into one word – clown. And even if we think about that word, clowns’ job is to entertain people and Depp does a marvelous job in that.

    As to Alice in Wonderland – I love that adaptation, I always disliked the original and finally, Burton’s version made me actually like the story. I would love to see more – and more to the development of Alice’s and Mad Hatter’s relationship.
    Johnny, you have not lost your fans… only the number of jealous idiots that spend their time gossiping and criticizing your success has increased.

    Maybe you people should think about the complexity of Depp’s roles and how they are different – which they are, tremendously – instead of trying to find how they are similar (ofc there are similarities – because the actor always puts a bit of himself into the roles). The matter of speaking, walking, thinking, gesturing, etc. are all different in his roles… Too bad you cannot see it.