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He has collaborated on nine films with director, producer and friend Tim Burton.
Depp is regarded as one of the world's biggest film stars. Barrie in Finding Neverland, and the Boston gangster Whitey Bulger in Black Mass.
Depp later stated that he was at the time depressed about films and filmmaking, but that "within 10 minutes of hearing about the project, I was committed." Ed Wood received critical acclaim, with Janet Maslin of The New York Times writing that Depp had "proved himself as an established, certified great actor" and "captured all the can-do optimism that kept Ed Wood going, thanks to an extremely funny ability to look at the silver lining of any cloud." The following year, Depp starred in three films.
In 1997, Depp also debuted as a director and screenwriter with The Brave.
He starred in it as a poor Native American man, who accepts a proposal from a wealthy man, played by Marlon Brando, to appear in a snuff film in exchange for money for his family. Thompson, and played his alter ego Raoul Duke in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas (1998), Terry Gilliam's film adaptation of Thompson's pseudobiographical novel of the same name.
Depp's next venture with Burton was the period film Sleepy Hollow (1999), in which he played Ichabod Crane opposite Christina Ricci and Christopher Walken.
Depp has taken on the task of challenging himself to portray "larger-than-life" roles, starting with a supporting role in Oliver Stone's Vietnam War film Platoon in 1986, then playing the title character in the romantic dark fantasy Edward Scissorhands (1990).
He later found box office success in the fantasy adventure film Sleepy Hollow (1999), the fantasy swashbuckler film Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003) and its sequels, the fantasy film Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005), the fantasy film Alice in Wonderland (2010) and voicing the title character in the animated action comedy western Rango (2011).