Johnny Depp And Meryl Streep “Deals Almost Wrapped” For ‘Into The Woods’ Movie

Johnny Depp and Meryl Streep filming together and singing. Who can resist? Not Disney any longer. It’s taken 16 months to get off the ground — ever since January 2012, when the studio sent out a press release announcing Rob Marshall (Chicago, Nine) would be directing Stephen Sondheim’s iconic 1987 Broadway musical Into The Woods as a feature film for Disney. A table read was held in NYC this past October featuring Donna Murphy, Megan Hilty, Christine Baranski, Allison Janney and quite a few other Broadway stars. Buzz of Streep’s interest first surfaced last summer and this past week Marshall confirmed in an interview to Playbill that she was “in” to the play the witch. Today Variety reported Depp’s interest. Now I’ve confirmed that Johnny and Meryl “almost have their deals wrapped up for the film,” according to sources. Marshall directed 2011’s Pirates Of The Caribbean 4 (which might have been more palatable as a musical because it stunk as the franchise’s fourquel) so he’s already Mouse friendly. The original musical with music and lyrics by Sondheim and book by James Lapine is about a childless baker and his wife who attempt to lift a family curse by journeying into the woods to confront the witch that put the spell on them. Along the way, they encounter classic fairy tale characters. Depp previously starred in the DreamWorks film version of Sondheim’s dark musical Sweeney Todd which was also the last time he sang on camera. Streep in films had a nice turn warbling country Western in the final scenes of Postcards From The Edge until the longtime Abba fan became the singing and dancing queen of Mamma Mia!. For Into The Woods, Marshall frequent collaborators John DeLuca will produce while David Krane will arrange the music. Lapine penned the screenplay.

Comments (60)

  • Dear Mr. Depp:

    If you’re playing the Baker, please do us an enormous favor and play it for real. No funny hats or clown makeup, no outlandish outfits or cutsie glasses, no affectations, no gimmicks and most of all, NO ACCENTS! If you need help, just call Chip Zien and/or Joanna Gleason – who were FLAWLESS. However… If you’re playing the Giant…. have at it!

    Dear Ms. Streep – just channel Prada, wear more eye shadow and sing the songs, which are the Bible compared that Abba nonsense – you can do no wrong.

    Comment by Paul — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 5:23pm PDT  
    • Amen.

      Comment by Mark — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 8:45pm PDT  
    • Chip Zien was a twitchy mess.

      Comment by Banjoman — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 11:50pm PDT  
      • Chip Zien was GREAT as the baker!

        Comment by SteveJay27 — Saturday May 4, 2013 @ 8:38am PDT  
    • The perfect role or roles for Johnny Depp would be the Wolf and one of the princes as was done on stage! He would be fantastic as the wolf!

      Comment by Al Schweiger — Sunday April 28, 2013 @ 2:31am PDT  
      • Agreed–wolf/prince all the way!

        Comment by Elaine — Tuesday May 21, 2013 @ 2:39pm PDT  
  • After what Depp did to Sweeney Todd, How can he even be considered for another musical????!!?? This is a sad week for Musicals – first they announce Channing Tatum for “Guys and Dolls” and now this. What Hollywood continues to do to musicals is a travesty! SELECT ACTORS WHO CAN SING!!! I am sure a remake of “Mame” with Roseanne Barr is in our future.

    Comment by sad — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 5:32pm PDT  
    • What’s wrong with Channing Tatum in Guys and Dolls? He’s charismatic, handsome and funny.

      Comment by Anonymous — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 10:13pm PDT  
    • Depp was wonderful in Sweeney Todd. His voice isn’t big but it didn’t need to be for that movie. Even the New York Times opera critic loved his performance, including his singing. He was nominated for an Oscar for it, and unlike some recent actors singing in a musical movie, there were no complaints about him being nasal, whiny, over emoting or just being a non-singer. He’s musical, he started out as a musician. Guess it’s trendy to claim he does this or that all the time, but his career has been tremendously varied, about all he hasn’t played is a stereotypical leading man, which for some reason some people think he “needs” to play.

      Comment by vf — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 10:36pm PDT  
      • sorry but he was dreadful. Played one note, i dont mean singing i mean emotion, through the whole movie. He just glowered. Dreadful and i can guarantee some of the people you mentioned who loved him just wanted to sleep with him.
        I used to like him but i dont think hes given a decent performance in years.

        Comment by please — Saturday April 27, 2013 @ 12:22pm PDT  
        • Well, it’s not like Sweeney Todd was a role with a lot of range of emotion, he was hell bent for revenge from the start. He played him like he was damaged, depressed, with little affect, which considering Sweeney’s past and his horrendous acts made sense. What were you expecting from a characterization of a serial killer in the middle of his crimes? But as such a damaged Sweeney, Depp made him seem tragic, you cared when he died, which I think is a feat. Given the material (and I hated a recent production of it, which was played too much for laughs, which some people seem to like, don’t get that at all) I think he did the best he could, if you don’t care about Sweeney at least somewhat, what’s the point?

          Depp is a very good actor.

          Comment by vf — Saturday April 27, 2013 @ 2:02pm PDT  
          • I’ve seen eight or nine people play Sweeney Todd on stage. All of them were far less famous than Depp; all of them found a far greater range of emotion in the role than he did, all of them were far more moving in that final scene than he did, and all of them sang it better (but then, granted, a lamp-post could probably sing it better than Depp). Depp is a lousy actor who has been very, very lucky indeed; his Sweeney Todd was a particular low-point in his career. He *might*, I suppose, do OK in a film of Into the Woods, as long as it’s written into his contract 1) that he’ll have to use more than three facial expressions (somebody might want to check that he’s *got* more than three first), and 2) that his singing will be dubbed by someone competent.

            Comment by SF — Saturday April 27, 2013 @ 8:11pm PDT  
      • I Agree! “Sweeney Todd” is much harder to sing than “Into the Woods”

        Comment by Al Schweigerv — Sunday April 28, 2013 @ 2:35am PDT  
    • roseanne in riding togs while the whole cast belts out the song MAME……I’M IN FOR THAT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      Comment by richard — Saturday April 27, 2013 @ 1:00am PDT  
  • Awesome, awesome, awesome. Thank God they’re doing this with such a classy cast, cannot wait.

    Comment by theatrenerd — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 5:33pm PDT  
  • This is golden. If you get some hot under 40′s in the cast then it will become even more appealing.

    Comment by Roberto — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 5:38pm PDT  
  • What did he did for ST?? He was AMazing in that movie and he have been nominated for the oscar and The critics choice award and he have won the golden globe for his performance

    Comment by yousef — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 5:47pm PDT  
  • I guess Meryl didn’t sing a note in A Prairie Home Companion in 2006–16 years after Postcards but a mere 2 years prior to Mama Mia!

    Comment by moto — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 6:03pm PDT  
  • Depp should run far, far away from disney. since he hooked his wagon to that mouse, he’s done nothing but sully his reputation.

    Comment by merrrrraanga — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 6:18pm PDT  
    • and in the process made millions for him and Billions for Disney, remember it’s a business and films are a product, not art.

      Comment by lsb — Saturday April 27, 2013 @ 12:22am PDT  
      • yeah, he got a pretty good price for his integrity.

        Comment by merrrrraanga — Saturday April 27, 2013 @ 11:13am PDT  
  • Depp AND Sweeney Todd were both incredible. One of the best movies from that year. And in my opinion, the best adaptation from Broadway to Hollywood that we’ve seen in a long while.

    Comment by Sweeney — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 6:21pm PDT  
    • Agreed…+1

      Comment by Truthteller — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 6:53pm PDT  
  • Why are you talking like if he’s wearing that stuff in all of his movies? He wear that stuff when the role require that ANd he didn’t wear that stuff in most of his movies like the rum diary and the tourist and public enemies

    Comment by goga — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 6:21pm PDT  
  • Meryl & Johnny don’t have the vocal chops to pull-off these songs. It is important to hire actors that have the singing chops.

    Comment by jt — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 6:29pm PDT  
    • Street has the chops. Depp, I’m not so sure about.

      Comment by Sparky — Friday April 26, 2013 @ 7:51pm PDT  
    • I assume Depp would play the baker, which I don’t think is a particular ardous singing part. Besides, Sondheim didn’t have a problem with him in Sweeney Todd.

      The casting I wonder about is Strep as the witch. She has a decent singing voice, but it is untrained. Can she bring off “Children will listen”? Well, never underestimate one of the top 3 actors of her generation.

      Comment by Dedpubserv — Tuesday May 7, 2013 @ 9:02am PDT  
  |  More Comments

Sorry, comments are closed for this article.