This is the tale of an ordinary man (Depp) who had everything. Until a man of power stole his freedom, destroyed his family, and banished him for life. In his sorrow, a new man was born.

Sweeney Todd marks the first time Johnny Depp has sung publicly. Sweeney Todd composer, Stephen Sondheim was reluctant to hand over the rights to this dark musical, but allowed director Tim Burton to make it into a movie on the condition that he retained casting approval. However, Burton refused to direct unless Depp played the lead. Sondheim was concerned his voice was too rock orientated but he approved after Depp performed a vocal audition for the composer.

Sacha Baron Cohen prepared for his role by undertaking 16 hours of barber shop shaving training to perfect his razor technique.

Sweeney Todd is the sixth Burton/Depp collaboration. Others have included The Corpse Bride, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, and Edward Scissorhands.

Sweeney Todd Trailer Screencap

Musical fans will know that Sondheim's Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street is a challenging musical, both for the actors involved and the audience watching. Who better to tackle the dark, macabre horror than Tim Burton, whose interpretation of pretty much everything transcends standard film making and takes us firmly into the territory of the surreal.

Johnny Depp takes the lead role of the wronged Benjamin Barker, who has been left determined to seek revenge on Judge Turpin after he stole his family away. Depp's vocals aren't really showcased much in the above trailer, but what little we do hear gives the impression of him sounding very Bowie-esque, which while unusual for the actor playing Barker/ Sweeney Todd, is certainly not unwelcome.

Helena Bonham Carter always embraces her dark side, and plays that borderline psychotic character very well indeed. Truly, she's a joy on screen and though we don't hear her sing in the trailer, she really is good at it.

As for Alan Rickman well, he is, as always, fantastic at portraying the cold, heartless, icy villain. Sacha Baron Cohen brings a great vibrancy to the screen in a otherwise incredibly dark (visually) movie.

The music is, of course, stunning. The plot is repulsive and, if you have a weak stomach, be warned that this movie is very bloody and very sickening indeed. All that said, Sondheim's work is that of pure brilliance, and the chance to see such an all-star cast tackle it, is a dream come true.

2 min 26 sec


Posted On
October 07, 2007
Tim Burton

John Logan

Paramount Pictures

December 21, 2007
Johnny Depp
Helena Bonham Carter
Alan Rickman
Timothy Spall
Jamie Campbell Bower
Trailer Tracks
No Music Available
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