Johnny Depp has had a pretty remarkable career in Hollywood. Though his movie-star looks made him an easy choice to be the next big heartthrob, Depp steered away from those roles early in his career, taking on more unusual projects. That penchant for daring choices surprisingly made him one of the biggest movie stars in the world.
Though behind-the scenes-drama has led to Depp's career faltering in recent years, he has created many fun and eccentric characters over the years through unusual costumes, voices, and mannerisms. Sometimes these characters can feel forced, other times they make the movie exponentially more interesting. Here are the weirdest Johnny Depp characters, ranked.
10 Sands (Once Upon A Time In Mexico)
Robert Rodriquez seems like the perfect director to team with Depp. Rodriguez too is interested in departing from typical characters and isn't afraid to create something truly weird. The results can vary, but Once Upon a Time in Mexico was a real winner.
Depp plays a Sands, a rogue CIA operative who enlists the help of a famed gunfighter (Antonio Banderas) to take down a drug lord. Despite the complex plot he's involved in, Sands seems to be making it all up as he goes. He is a wild, childish character and Depp seems to be having a lot of fun with the role.
9 Mad Hatter (Alice In Wonderland)
Tim Burton has been one of Depp's most important collaborators in his career. We'll see their work together many times on this list and that the two were willing to take chances with each other.
When the two teamed for a retelling of Alice in Wonderland, it was clear it was going to be a strange film, especially with Depp as the Mad Hatter. The pasty appearance and insane costumes for the character stood out, as did Depp's choice of accent and the decision to have the Hatter breakdance.
8 Ichabod Crane (Sleepy Hollow)
Tim Burton was an obvious choice to bring the classic scary story of "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" to life, and Depp was an obvious choice for his Ichabod Crane. In this telling, Crane is a forensic investigator in the 1800s who investigates a series of murders in the titular town.
Depp once again plays against the norm, portraying Crane, the hero of the story as an awkward, frightened man who spends much of the movie fainting. It's a hammy performance that brings a lot of humor to the tale of horror.
7 Raoul Duke (Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas)
Depp has always had a fascination with the eccentric writer Hunter S. Thompson. It's likely he was quite honored to bring one of Thompson's most popular works to the big screen and he was ready to fully embrace the insanity of the project.
Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas follows a journalist (Depp) and his lawyer (Benicio del Toro) on a drug-fueled odyssey in Las Vegas. Depp and del Toro are both completely mad in their roles and their performances only add to the movie feeling like a fever dream.
6 Tonto (The Lone Ranger)
Tonto is one of Depp's more controversial roles and one that he didn't hold back for in its strange design. The movie is a big-budget take on the classic Western hero the Lone Ranger (Armie Hammer) and his Native American sidekick, Tonto (Depp).
Aside from the controversy of casting Depp as a Native American, the actor had some unusual choices for the character. Aside from being painting totally white and his ability to talk to horses, Tonto spent the entire movie with a dead crow on his head, which was a choice from Depp himself.
5 Ed Wood (Ed Wood)
Depp and Burton reteamed for a Hollywood-set comedy. But, as can be expected with these two, it was a very unusual Hollywood tale. Ed Wood tells the story of the infamous filmmaker who was largely considered to be the worst director in the world.
Depp plays Wood as a hapless yet enthusiastic man who simply loves making movies. The pencil-thin mustache and unsettling toothy grin make Wood a unique-looking character. Depp's voice choice, which is said to be based on Ronald Reagan and Casey Kasem, is also very memorable.
4 Rango (Rango)
Depp even manages to infuse some of his trademark weirdness into his animated characters, as seen in Rango. Depp stars as the titular chameleon, who stumbles into a lawless and dangerous town and inadvertently becomes the new sheriff.
The film has a unique animation style that lends itself well to the surreal feel of the film. Depp, of course, adds to this feel playing the cowardly, reluctant hero. His voice work adds a lot to the character and makes Rango that much more fun.
3 Willy Wonka (Charlie And The Chocolate Factory)
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory might have been the point where audiences decided these collaborations between Burton and Depp were getting a little repetitive. While the movie does feel somewhat uninspired, it's hard to say that Depp isn't trying something new.
Willy Wonka is a strange character however you look at him, but Depp was able to bring it to a whole new level. With a ridiculous wig, childlike enthusiasm, and some very white fake teeth, Depp set himself apart from Gene Wilder's take on the character, for better or worse.
2 Edward Scissorhands (Edward Scissorhands)
Edward Scissorhands was the first film Depp made with Tim Burton, and many consider it to be their best work together. Depp plays the titular character, a boy who was made by a lonely old inventor who died before he could replace Edward's scissor hands with real ones.
The character's Goth appearance fits Depp well and the insane, dangerous hands are certainly memorable. Depp brings a lot of sweetness to the character, speaking in almost a whisper and always looking like a lost puppy.
1 Captain Jack Sparrow (Pirates Of The Caribbean)
The Pirates of the Caribbean series has become one of the biggest franchises in history and a lot of that could be thanks to Depp's performance as Captain Jack Sparrow. Sparrow is a renowned pirate of the high seas who teams up with a blacksmith to take on a band of ghostly pirates.
Depp famously based his performance on musician Keith Richards, with a slurred voice and unique walk. Depp's performance is amazing to watch and even earned him an Oscar nomination. It helped turn what could have been a standard adventure film into a wild and entertaining ride.