A Brief History Of Johnny Depp's Sunglasses

Currently channeling his inner Hunter in the Rum Diary, we found Johnny Depp is no stranger to ocular protection. Here's a run down of his ten best eyewear choices.
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Currently channeling his inner Hunter in the Rum Diary, we found Johnny Depp is no stranger to ocular protection. Here's a run down of his ten best eyewear choices.

Johnny Depp is often cited as a sex symbol and one of the sexiest men alive, but without his beloved eyewear this may all not have been possible, and so we give you 10 great examples of the king of cool sporting a mix of onscreen frames.

1. Johnny Depp as Paul Kemp - 'The Rum Diary'


Chances are if it’s Depp taking on another Hunter S. Thompson movie, it involves indulging in drugs, late night drinking, profanity, sex and self-destruction – and so we have The Rum Diaries.  Depp plays Paul Kemp, the young journalist working in a Puerto Rico newsroom, who seems only able to only come alive when he is drugged up or knocking back excessive amounts of rum.  In true how-to-hide-a-hangover style, Depp fittingly wears these semi-rimless sunglasses that conceal him from the awful sobriety of life that he struggles to deal with– on the while looking effortlessly cool, as you do Johnny.

2. Johnny Depp as Willy Wonka - 'Charlie and the Chocolate Factory'


Considering Depp’s outfit here as the eccentric, chocolate bearing, kids favourite but tooth fairies worst nightmare, Willy Wonka, these ridiculously oversized goggles don’t seem far worse off than the rest. Depp casually sports a knee-length velvet coat, a massive top hat and an Anna Wintour-esque bob.  In the film Willy Wonka wears the goggles to “prevent light burning his eyeballs right out of his skull” in the TV room, we wouldn’t expect any less from a Burton/ Depp collaboration.  Neither would we expect any less from socialite Nicole Richie who was caught out wearing similar Wonka-style goggles – providing laughs all round and a temporary distraction from when we actually try to figure out why the fuck she is rich and famous.

3. Johnny Depp as Ichabod Crane - 'Sleepy Hollow'


Only Depp could make this bizarre, mad scientist eyewear look fashionably cool.  Ichabod Crane is the wimpish constable in pursuit of the Headless Horseman killer in the village.  With 18 decapitations in the film it’s no surprise that along with this magnifying eyewear, Crane faints a total of 6 times in the film.  As the story goes Crane was dreadfully ugly and so Depp wanted to wear prosthetics to enhance this look, adding a long nose and big ears, but director Tim Burton refused stressing that Crane’s ugliness would be indentified in his personality.  In simpler terms, no we don’t want to see you dressed as an ugly creep Depp, you unlike a large majority of mankind are blessed with awfully good looks, please embrace this.

4. Johnny Depp as Raoul Duke - 'Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas'


En route to LA in search of the American Dream, told through a non existent narrative, blurred lines between reality and fantasy, hallucinations and a whole heap of drugs, these yellow tinted Ray-Ban’s help make the ride all the more hazy. Refer to the bizarre photo-shopped movie poster for another dose of some major tripping and probably the biggest glasses in movie poster history you will ever see.

5. Johnny Depp as George Jung - 'Blow'


Given that Penelope Cruz co-stars as Depp’s love interest in this 2001 biopic of big time Medellin drug smuggler George Jung, there’s no doubt that Depp relished on wearing a range of sunglasses for the majority of his screen time.  The perfect disguise for perving on the Spanish beauty without facing stalking charges.

6. Johnny Depp as John Dillinger - 'Public Enemies'


Set in 1933, before the Ray-Ban Wayfarer of Aviator frames were invented, this was the classic look of the time, simple rounded vintage frames.  Depp seamlessly looks the part as he depicts the story of notorious bank robber John Dillinger during an era of fashionable gangsters – where style was booming and in came the obsession with celebrity criminals.   Throughout the period there were reported cases of the FBI finding copycat gangsters dressed head to toe like Dillinger, if the image is anything to go by can you blame them?

7. Johnny Depp as Dean Corso - 'The Ninth Gate'


A film about Satan, two demon texts, one written in collaboration with the devil and a dark sinister tone playing the backdrop, yet in the 133 minutes of running time we’re more interested in the bold eyewear worn throughout by Depp and two of his co-stars, Frank Langella and Barbara Jefford.  With all the films enormous potential it’s a shame that it failed to match the extravagance of Depp’s luxury Savile Row frames.

8. Johnny Depp as Mort Rainey - 'Secret Window'


Author Mort Rainey, suffers a mental breakdown after catching his wife having an affair.  Going for the ‘My wife’s just left me so I’m going to wear my bathrobe throughout all hours of this depressing day and never going to get a haircut’ look, Depp completes his outfit with some rather large but trademark black glasses.  Tough times for Mort who on the recovery form catching his wife sleeping with another man, manages to win over thousands of women in cinemas across the world with his vulnerable, just-had-his-heart-broken appeal.   There, there Johnny.

9. Johnny Depp as Donnie Brasco - 'Donnie Brasco'


Simply because of how cool he looks in these Aviator Ray-Bans, it’s only right that we feature this in the list and pay homage to Johnny Depp, the on/off screen king of glasses.

10. Johnny Depp as Ed Wood - 'Ed Wood'


Once named the world’s worst director by TIME magazine, Tim Burton calls onto his collaborating whore buddy Depp to step up to the challenge of portraying this notorious filmmaker.  These classic dark shades add a nice touch to the black and white production that cost more to make than all of Wood’s films put together.

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