Director Terry Gilliam is said to have his sights on Johnny Depp to finish a presumable portion of what remains of Heath Ledger‘s role in The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus. The news comes from Rupert Murdoch’s scandal-obsessed UK paper The Sun, complete with a quote from an unnamed studio source…

“There is a point in the film when Heath falls through a magic mirror,” says the anonymous source. “He could change into another character after that and that is where Johnny would come in. It’s a weird, fantasy, time-travel movie so Heath’s character could easily change appearance. It would be a poignant moment. Johnny’s not working at the moment so everyone is praying he will do it.”

Now, this sounds like it could be legit, as Gilliam and Depp previously collaborated on the infamous The Man Who Killed Don Quixote, a movie that was canceled mid-production due to an actor’s serious illness, as well as floods, a possible voodoo curse et al. And then there’s Gilliam’s Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, which clearly marked a personal career highlight for Depp. And as you can see, Depp and Ledger are often shown wearing fedoras, sunglasses and artiste ‘staches in photos, so there’s a shared appearance and sensibility.

On one hand, Depp would be paying a nice tribute to Ledger if he goes for it and saving Gilliam yet another dashed vision on his record; on the other, if Depp’s not interested, this is a messed up way to create an obligation via the media, no matter the source.

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