Johnny Depp on the set of The Rum Diary

Photos courtesy of David Ische/Caitlin Weber

Photos courtesy of David Ische/Caitlin Weber

Special thanks for Caitlin & David for letting me post their pictures. They were lucky enough to get a glimpse of Aaron Eckhart and Johnny Depp shooting a scene at El Yunque National Rainforest near San Juan, Puerto Rico this past March. After playing opposite Christian Bale, a.k.a Batman in Public Enemies, Depp is co-starring with another Gotham resident ‘Harvey Dent.’ (Sorry I couldn’t resist!)

Based on a novel by Hunter S. Thompson with the same name, Depp plays an American journalist named Paul Kemp, which is loosely based on the author’s own life journey. Kemp moves from New York to the Caribbean with the hope of finding adventure, but instead finds himself tangled in love, jealousy, and violence, amongst his alcoholic American peers who staff the run-down newspaper. Lots of alcohol (rum) involved I’m assuming, hence the title.

Set in the 1950s, this is the second Thompson’s book-to-film adaptation for Depp. The first one was Fear & Loathing in Las Vegas in 1998, where he also played a journalist desperately seeking for the ‘American dream’ with the help of drugs and alcohol hidden in their convertible. Looks like this is a fitting vehicle for Depp who’s known to gravitate towards ‘lost soul’ kind of characters. Eckhart, hot off the massively popular Batman sequel, is a also a great actor with skills and charisma. This is a much more promising cast than the previously rumored Benicio del Toro + Josh Hartnett duo. Nothing against del Toro, but Hartnett just isn’t in Depp’s league.

In any case, Depp is definitely one of the busiest actors working today. He just wrapped Alice in Wonderland as The Mad Hatter (which would mark the seventh time he works with director Tim Burton), and is slated to do The Man Who Killed Don Quixote next. Awesome!

9 thoughts on “Johnny Depp on the set of The Rum Diary

  1. I had the pleasure of spending a week watching the filming in Puerto Rico. It was amazing seeing how a film is done.
    Got lots of pictures and stories. Everyone on the set were so nice and helpful. What a great bunch of people!
    Johnny was so gracious and sweet to everyone.
    An experience I would not trade for anything.

  2. rtm

    Hi Kim, thanks for visiting my blog. WOW, that’s cool that you got to be on the set and actually meeting him. I’ve always wanted to see a film shoot, especially with someone like Johnny! He’s one of the few American actors I admire, so that’s great to hear he’s also gracious in person. I’ll be checking your blog to see all the pics. Thanks again for sharing your experience!

  3. PrairieGirl

    Been to San Juan and El Yunque, sans movie stars. Fabulous locations, will be great to see on film. BTW, how do you get to watch filming? Probably a dumb question, but had to ask.

  4. Sometimes when they film on location and not in a studio you can watch what happens.. The nice thing about the Rum Diary is that I think they shot the majority of the film on location. Not sure if they did any work in a studio or not.
    But knowing they were filming down there and wanting to try and get our sites project into Johnny’s hands we booked a trip!
    All the filming was done in the open and as long as people behaved themselves they were allowed to stay. It’s amazing how many people when they are watching pay no attention to what the crew is telling them they need to do. We were there a week.. and everyday that they filmed m-f we were able to be right there! How do you come down from something like that? Seeing JD everyday several times a day and with some interaction.. to not seeing him?? Haven’t figured that one out yet. Neither has my traveling friend.
    If you just want to watch the filming process find out where films are being shot on location.. most will let spectators close.. as long as they do what they are told(which means to stay out of the “shot”)
    And yes.. I was not disappointed at all.. I know sometimes when you meet someone that you admire they so often let you down.. Not Johnny.. Just made me admire and respect him more then before (if that was possible)

    1. PrairieGirl

      Hi Deppo, thanks for all the inside info, sounds like it was really worth the trip, especially in such a great location. Is finding out where location filming easier said than done? Now to find out where Rufus Sewell will be filming his next project on location…(smile!)

      1. rtm

        Ha..ha.. Becky, of course you’d like to know where Rufus’ shooting his next flix! If only they shot more movies here in the Midwest! Well he was in a flix where part of the filming was in Mpls though (The Very Thought of You), not sure if he was actually in town then or not.

  5. Mike

    I think Depp, who’s got real talent, also has a knack for picking interesting roles. He’s skilled enough to pull them off. That variety of characters keeps his image fresh. And thus one never tires of his work. He rewards you for being a fan!

    Another flick on my list of “gotta-see” …

  6. Sometimes IMDB.com will have information if you go further in on the movie info… find what movie they are working on.. click on it.. then go to the production info.. sometimes you get lucky

  7. Juliet

    Ohhh, how cool… I just read the book on one of my long train trips around Germany last couple of weeks and really loved it! Cracked me up! I will be sure to watch this movie when it comes out, especially Johnny Depp is in it. My friend, Angie is also a great fan of Thompson’s books so I will let her know. Thanks, Ruth!

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