Johnny Depp has built his career off becoming an entirely different person usually while hiding under gobs of makeup and hundreds of hair extensions. On February 15th, Johnny Depp will be honored by receiving the Distinguished Artisan Award from the union representing Hollywood’s hair stylists and make-up artists. Johnny Depp will be the first ever recipient of this award. The award ceremony is schedule to take place at Paramount Studios and had previously been on a hiatus for a decade.
Depp will be receiving the inaugural award from his friend and long-time make-up artist Joel Harlow. Depp and Harlow first met on the set of Jim Jarmusch’s Dead Man back in 1995. Harlow then worked with Depp on the mega successful Pirates Of The Caribbean franchise. Harlow helped hide the A-lister and make him nearly unrecognizable as the famous Captain Jack Sparrow. Since the Pirates franchise, Harlow has become Johnny Depp’s key make-up artist working with the actor on several films including but not limited to Alice In Wonderland, The Tourist, The Rum Diary, and Dark Shadows. The pair even worked on this year’s The Lone Ranger together. The actor and make-up artist next collaboration can be seen on April 18th when Depp appears in the Wally Pfister’s science fiction film Transcendence. Harlow won himself an Academy Award for his work on the 2009 J.J. Abrams’ film Star Trek and is nominated again for this year’s The Lone Ranger.
President of the Make-Up Artists And Hair Stylists Guild, Local 706 Susan Cabral-Ebert said Johnny Depp could not be a fitting recipient for this honor when the announcement came in Monday afternoon. She went onto add that Depp, more than any other actor working in Hollywood today, utilizes the skills of the make-up artists and hair stylists to delineate his characters and separate them from the rest of the pack. Cabral-Ebert noted that Depp has always been a keen supporter of the craft and is ultimately very respectful and appreciative of the members’ abilities during the creative process. She concluded by noting that he is a great artist that always allows for those around him to shine.
Johnny Depp got his first break on the big screen playing the title character in Tim Burton’s 1990 nightmarish fairy tale Edward Scissorhands. Since his breakout, the actor has been known for his willingness to alter his appearance through the use of hair and makeup and has done so several times throughout his career. The actor has given show-stealing performances in films like Sleepy Hollow, Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street, Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas and Ed Wood amongst a plethora others. Depp always seeks to create an indelible impression on every character he tackles. From the actor’s kooky and quirky takes on Willy Wonka and The Mad Hatter in Charlie And The Chocolate Factory and Alice In Wonderland to his now iconic performance as Captain Jack Sparrow in the Pirates franchise, the actor has shown why the make-up and hair artists of Hollywood chose him for this prestigious honor.
By Benjamin Murray