Johnny being Johnny, he might have popped up the third week in August in some wry little character piece almost no one saw. And his performance would have been the best thing in it, a suitably obscure talking point for James Lipton. But this year, Johnny tried something different: He applied his outrageous gifts to Pirates of the Caribbean, a movie for the masses—winning over even the theme-park set with his cheeky swashbuckler, Jack Sparrow. That was the beginning of the summer. At the end, playing a weirdly hell-bent CIA agent, Depp stole Once Upon A Time in Mexico from Antonio Banderas, thus bookending the sweaty months with two of the season’s most entertaining movies.
And he did all this while turning 40. It’s a lesson to Hollywood’s febrile comers, all of whom call Depp their hero: Work hard, learn well. And make peace with the fact that you’ll never be as cool as Johnny Depp. ~ L.K.
Le Raincy, France
(suit by Dolce & Gabbana)