Johnny Depp signs up for The Rum Diary

This is one of those stories we’ve watched grow from a little rumour seedling through the difficult growth of searching for funding and development hell, and now emerging as a beautiful cinematic plant. Or, you, know, something.

Because the deal is done at last – Johnny Depp’s slipping back into his Hunter S Thompson style for Warner Independent’s film of The Rum Diary.

Withnail & I’s Bruce Robinson is the man charged with writing and directing the adaptation of the autobiographical novel that Thompson penned when he was 22. The story follows Paul Kemp, a freelance hack working for a rundown newspaper in 1950s Puerto Rico, surrounded by a load of fellow journos mired in self-destructive tendencies. Though it was written in 1959, the book didn’t actually arrive until 1998.

It’s not the only big announcement in recent Depp history – he’s also just started developing an adaptation of TV vampire soap Dark Shadows, which was an obsession for the young Johnny. He’s wanted to be lead Barnabas Collins for years and now it looks like he’ll get his chance.

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