Depp's Wonka Inspiration? George W. Bush

Depp's Wonka Inspiration? George W. Bush

Johnny Depp’s take on Willy Wonka in the 2005 film “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” proved as weird as most Depp fans expected.

The “Pirates of the Caribbean” star is known for his outlandish film roles, particularly when he teams up with oddball auteur Tim Burton.

And while most people saw more than a little bit of Michael Jackson in Depp’s Wonka, a role made famous by Gene Wilder, Depp contends he was channeling someone else while on set.

A certain president of the United States, to be precise.

“I imagined what George Bush would be like incredibly stoned. And, thus was born my version of Willy Wonka,” he said.

It’s the kind of goofy sound bite he knows will get traction, especially as he hits the talk show circuit to promote his latest film, “Dark Shadows,” which opens Friday. Depp plays Barnabas Collins, a vampire set free after roughly 200 years trapped in a locked coffin. The film is based on the popular late ’60s/early ’70s gothic soap opera starring the late Jonathan Frid.

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