HOLLYWOOD – First image of Black Mass 2: Dog Days starring Amber Heard and Johnny Depp was released on the internet today.

Johnny Depp and Amber Heard are to star in Black Mass 2: Dog Days, the sequel to Depp’s hit crime movie which will follow the adventures of master criminal Whitey Bulger and his dogs Bullet and Pooch. Johnny Depp spoke EXCLUSIVELY to the Studio Exec about the new movie:

When we finished Black Mass I thought I’m done with this story. It ain’t nice being in Whitey’s head, but I don’t know what it is but at the moment I feel close to the criminal world and I feel like going back there and finding out what would happen.

But surely Bulger goes to prison?

We’re making this an original story. I’m writing it with Amber. Whitey escapes from prison and goes to Australia.


Yeah, Australia and you know what he takes with him.


His dogs. All of them.

But the quarantine laws are quite strict in Australia.

Oh yeah they try to stop him but Whitey isn’t a pushover. And he goes on a one man crime spree throughout Queensland. And he doesn’t ever say sorry.

Image courtesy of @ThePixelFactor.


HOLLYWOOD – Johnny Depp has an unrecognizability clause in his contract, it was revealed today.

Noted children’s entertainer and one time actor Johnny Depp has a special ‘unrecognizability clause’ in his contract which states:

Johnny Depp (hereafter the ARTIST) must be made up and costumed in such a way as to make reviewers and critics write something along the lines of ‘Johnny Depp is unrecognizable in the role’. This must be done no matter how distracting the make up and costume might be to the story and the ARTIST must be allowed to go home in the costume and visit hospitals, children’s parties etc.

Although insiders tell the Studio Exec that this part of the contract is not always enforced, Depp insists that it is always present should he feel the urge. Black Mass, Alice Through the Looking Glass, The Lone Ranger, the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise and Tusk all fell victim to the clause.

The most recent film in which the clause was not enforced – Transcendence – was largely seen as a flop and has only hardened Depp’s insistence on being unrecognizable. However, legal expert Morty Penn told the Exec that the clause has very little validity.

You see, the problem is once you become known for appearing unrecognizable then it’s precisely your ostentatious disguise which makes you so obviously you. It becomes your trademark.

Tim Burton, Johnny Depp’s best friend and many believe his enabler, says that he believes Depp’s method is due to his childhood:

When you’re a child you want to dress up and pretend to be someone else. That is in what essence acting is. And that is what Johnny does. And he does it well. He tries to go away and do something else – like the Rum Diary – but then he comes back to me weeping and begging me to put a ton of make up on him and dress him up as a banana or something.

Alice Through the Looking Glass will be released in 2016.


SPOTLIGHT – REVIEW – All the Pope’s Men sees Birdman and the Incredible Hulk lead a newspaper investigation in Boston to bring down endemic child rape in the Catholic church.

Boston has not had a good year in film. First Black Mass reminded everyone of Whitey Bulger and now Tom McCarthy’s Spotlight throws light on the pedophilia scandal that broke in the Catholic church there in the early oughts. Marty Baron (Liev Schreiber) is the new editor of the Boston Globe and is cordially feared as the new broom who has come in to sweep through another series of cuts, but the first in many surprises it turns out that he also wants to gee up the investigative team on the paper, the Spotlight section, and get them doing something relevant to the city. He prods team leader Walter Robinson (Michael Keaton) to have a look at a story of a cover up of child abuse scandal involving a Catholic priest. With the rest of his team Matty Carroll (Brian d’Arcy James), Mike Rezendes (Mark Ruffalo),  and Sacha Pfeiffer (Rachel McAdams) they begin to meticulously uncover a massive systemic problem. As one of the former victims tells them, with over half of all priests violating their vows of celibacy an atmosphere of secrecy and collusion exists where such aberrant behavior can go unchecked. Stanley Tucci also turns up as Stanley Tucci, a lawyer who has been pursuing the church for years and is highly suspicious of the staying power of the journos.

Both a timely reminder of the scandal itself, the aftershocks of which continue to this day and a heartfelt peaen to the kind of investigative print journalism which is becoming ever rarer – the Spotlight team might only do one story a year – Spotlight is an old-fashioned procedural in many ways but it has the heft and the wit to build its own case without histrionics or outrageous villains. The whole of Boston is to some extent at fault and the journalists themselves are left to examine their own consciences rather than run victory laps. A sober and fascinating film.

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REVIEW – BLACK MASS – Is Johnny Depp’s return to form as James ‘Whitey’ Bulger in Scott Cooper’s Boston set gangster pic, actually true?

There is no doubt that Johnny Depp is beginning to tire of visiting children’s hospitals dressed as Jack Sparrow. Maybe he’s also fed up of having to sit in Tim Burton’s make up chair for seven hours every day to recreate some fantastical personage that ends up always looking like Johnny Depp with tons of make up. He might even have started watching his own movies, something he denied doing and then made Dark Shadows to show the reason why.

However, Scott Cooper’s “Black Mass” is not quite the masterpiece, to be ranked with the best of Martin Scorsese, that it obviously sets out to be. The fact that the nearest Scorsese film it resembles is the messy minor work The Departed – also set in Boston, also featuring a corrupt law enforcement officer – is perhaps a warning sign. And yet The Departed was a noisily entertaining lump of grunge with a wonderfully over the top Jack Nicholson performance, full of grand Guignol verve. Black Mass is altogether more respectable. It’s a polished piece of film that tastefully harks back to the seventies. It’s layered narrative feels like an after thought and its script has a tendency to lead the audience by the nostrils, but it isn’t dull. It’s good TV. Not great TV. Good TV.

James Whitey Bulger (Depp) is a small time hood, being squeezed by the Italian mafia but when John Connolly (Joel Edgerton) comes back to South Boston after landing a job in the FBI he brokers a deal whereby in return for the Italians, the FBI will turn a blind eye to, if not facilitate Bulger’s rise in the crime world.  Bulger himself is a weird Vampiric creature who is closer to the Madhatter than he is to Donnie Brasco. This is a huge problem with the film. You don’t see a character. You see contact lenses and a weird swimming cap bald piece. Just once I’d love Johnny Depp to be in a film in which he wasn’t review as ‘unrecognizable’. He is given lots of great scenes – the family recipe one feels like an instant classic – but this is also the problem: lots of great scenes does not a story, nor a character make. And many of the scenes appear to be at the service of Depp, showing how threatening etc he is. But it is a one note performance. A scene with his wife (Dakota Johnson) is so underwritten on her part that it feels like the two of them have never met let alone had a child together. Edgerton actually has the more interesting role and he pulls it off, amazingly, while still looking like Joel Edgerton!

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VENICE – In Venice, on the Lido, Italy – our very own Studio Exec wanders dazed among the stars and the paparazzi to bring you this latest report.

Goddamn Italian food. They stole Pizza from us. And now they steal spaghetti and meat balls too! And you cannot find a Starbucks anywhere in this God forsaken hole! Still, the fizzy grape juice is delicious. But I’m not here to talk about that I’m here to talk about the 72nd Venice Film Festival and all the films I’ve seen. Well first thing, if I had a star system (and I don’t) everything would be three stars. Nothing great, and worse still nothing completely rotten.

Beasts of No Nation: Was kind of depressing, looked beautiful, bits of savagery and  was way better than Season 2 of True Detective. Plus Idris Elba was and is amazing and should forget about James Bond and stick to acting in good films. Jesus Christ, Pierce Brosnan could play Bond and he can’t even play ping-pong.

Frankofonia: Wandering around the Louvre with Sokurov, a muttering Russian film director. It was funky but when he said: ‘It’s almost over, bear with me’ he won my first gut laugh of the festival. And it was of relief.

Looking for Grace: They find her.

Black Mass: It wanted to be a classic. It looked like a classic. But Goddamned Johnny Depp and his love affair with his Goddamned make up artist and costumer continues unabated. He looks like Nosfer-f*cking-atu. For all the talk of a comeback to serious acting, I’d like to see behind the curtain. Just once,can we have a performance from the man that doesn’t involve the word ‘unrecognizable’ in the review.

That’s it. I’m off for something they call ‘gelato’, that looks an awful like ice-cream to me.

The 72nd Venice Film Festival continues.


HOLLYWOOD – Johnny Depp was rushed to hospital last night with a rare case of second puberty.

The Pirates of the Caribbean star was taken ill during dinner when a witness speaking EXCLUSIVELY to the Studio Exec described the scene:

Johnny Depp was talking happily when mid-sentence, his voice broke. It just went up and then down again. It was strange and everyone turned round to see what was going on. And it was then we noticed this weird  bum fluff type hair appearing on his chin.

Depp retired for the evening, but later awoke with an intense urge top talk about his feelings and the meanings of Pink Floyd lyrics. He was admitted to hospital with what medics described as an intense case of second puberty.

Physician to the stars, Dr. Hali Tost explained:

Most of us only have one puberty, thank the good Christ, but in rare cases the fully grown or what us doctors call ‘adult’ patient can present with symptoms which are associated with puberty.

My God! What causes it Doc?

Usually, and this is very rare, the syndrome only occurs after a kind of regression back into childhood. There was a case in Australia where a man accidentally got locked in a crèche and when he emerged he had terrible acne and sulked all the time.  In the case of Johnny Depp, I imagine it has something to do with him dressing up all the time, like some silly child. Now he’s doing a serious role in Black Mass, playing an actual mature role, his body has caught the signal and is acting like he is just coming of age.

Does this mean he will be young again?

Oh Lord, no! People who go through second puberty always look dreadful. Truly awful. Nick Nolte went through it shortly after Prince of Tides.

Black Mass will be released tomorrow.  


HOLLYWOOD – Soon to be seen in Black Mass, Johnny Depp has also added a big screen adaptation to popular British children’s cartoon character Mr. Benn to his roster.

Following his more serious dramatic turn as real life gangster Whitey Bulger, Mr. Benn looks to be a return to Johnny Depp’s comfort zone of dressing up in different costumes.The BBC television program from the 1970s told the story of the eponymous character, a straight laced business man with a suit and bowler hat who occasionally left his house on 53 Festive Road to visit a costume shop. The shop and its fez wearing shopkeeper, however had magical properties and when Mr. Benn exits the changing room, he enters the world appropriate to the costume he has chosen. Created by David McKee, the show was a favorite of British children everywhere but only ran for two years. The film version will be directed by Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson is rumored to be in talks to play the shopkeeper.

Johnny Depp spoke EXCLUSIVELY to the Studio Exec:

This is going to be my most autobiographical film to date. I am Mr. Benn. That’s my life. Dressing up and make believe, a fantasy world to which I escape and yet then cannot escape from.

So is it an analogy?

I don’t like Italian food.

Mr. Benn will be released in 2018.