Take a fresh look at your lifestyle.

Johnny Depp rebuilds his life with an odyssey as bizarre as THAT process, writes ALISON BOSHOFF


On a chilly Sunday evening in the bustling city center of Sheffield, as drunken customers flocked to the sidewalk in front of The Slug and Lettuce, attention turned to a certain figure in the crowd.

Could it be? Wearing dark glasses – at night – and clad in his signature multi-layered shirts, bracelets and bandanas, and flanked by two stout bodyguards, the figure looked very much like a certain actor who’s been in the news a lot lately.

“That’s never Johnny Depp!” said one drinker. The exotic stranger looked out from under the brim of his fedora and replied with a smile, “It sure is.” He then gleefully posed for selfies with the crowd, mostly students, who were drinking.

And so began an unlikely adventure in the UK for Depp, 58, who had been in court in Virginia until last Friday for his blockbuster libel trial with ex-wife Amber Heard. Now he had switched courts to take the stage with his best friend and guitar legend Jeff Beck for his UK tour.

Beck introduced him on Thursday night, saying, “There’s someone here… you may not know who it is.” And the crowd roared. Depp is expected to join him for the remainder of the tour – to Birmingham, Manchester and York – which ends on Tuesday.

Johnny Deep appeared with Folly Wildlife Rescue on his ongoing UK tour following the conclusion of his defamation trial with Amber Heard

As you might expect, the spectacle of a Hollywood A-lister has caused a stir in British cities. Tickets to the shows are suddenly scarce and sizable crowds have gathered outside the modest hotels where the actor stays.

There were about 250 fans outside the Hilton in Gateshead on Thursday night hoping to catch a glimpse of Depp, his reputation restored by a US court, where he won his libel case against Heard.

He spent the hours waiting for the verdict in a pub in nearby Newcastle, drinking Guinness and eating fish, chips and mushy peas – much to the delight of gamblers and staff.

He went back to the Hilton to watch the court proceedings on Zoom.

Sources close to the star say he’s ‘still regrouping’ after the stunning ruling, which requires his ex-wife to pay him around £8 million, which she doesn’t have. “This is a huge moment for Johnny and he’s still trying to take it all in,” said a friend.

He may choose not to execute the debt, which would save Heard from bankruptcy. However, it’s too early to say if that’s an act of chivalry he’ll cherish.

The Hollywood actor (center) was pictured with singer Sam Fender (center right) and guitarist Jeff Beck (center left) in a Newcastle pub after the verdict

The Hollywood actor (center) was pictured with singer Sam Fender (center right) and guitarist Jeff Beck (center left) in a Newcastle pub after the verdict

Depp and his team continue to be furious with Heard and her side, assuming the process has yielded a second serious attempt to destroy him.

Meanwhile, he travels with Beck and his drummer, cellist, bassist and keyboardist, plus support act Sharon Corr. After playing at the Royal Albert Hall on Tuesday, a backstage party was attended by Kate Moss, Depp’s former girlfriend, who provided compelling evidence at his trial via a video link.

I am told it was a quiet affair of a few hours, with sandwiches and champagne. TV presenter Sharon Osbourne was also there.

But what is Depp up to — and why?

First, his pursuit of a music career is nothing new. He says, “I’ve been a guitarist all my life,” and in 2012 formed a band, the Hollywood Vampires, with Alice Cooper on vocals and Aerosmith’s Joe Perry on guitar. But his association with guitar icon Jeff Beck is another matter. The two men have written an album together that will be released in July and have been good friends for a long time.

It can be revealed that Depp is so committed to making music with Beck that he quietly flew back to the UK during a week-long hiatus in the process to rehearse with him to get ready for the tour. He stayed with Beck and his wife Sandra in their 16th century farmhouse near Wadhurst in East Sussex and spent his time playing the guitar.

He is indeed a regular at Beck’s spare room, spending months on end at their home, which he jokingly says is “in the English sticks.”

He is even gracious about the British weather, which he describes as ‘very nice and wet’. Though he owns a number of properties around the world, all of them more expensive and flashier than Beck’s, he is by choice the world’s most A-list sofa surfer.

A friend says: ‘They are very good friends and Johnny stays with him a lot. He spent months there during the lockdown, and since then. He’s actually been living there for a long time.’

The couple released a cover of the John Lennon song Isolation during the lockdown in 2020.

They met in 2014 when Depp was in Tokyo shooting a movie while Beck was on tour, and the actor knocked on his hotel room door to introduce himself. He idolizes the 77-year-old, who Rolling Stone has replaced Keith Richards as a father figure to Depp.

Growing up in suburban Wallington, Surrey, Beck is known as an innovator and guitar master, but not one of the easiest men in the world.

Depp, pictured here on stage with Jeff Beck at the Royal Albert Hall, has joined him on his UK tour

Depp, pictured here on stage with Jeff Beck at the Royal Albert Hall, has joined him on his UK tour

Indeed, he is quite famous for his bad temper and rivalry with other musicians. He was fired from the Yardbirds after failing to show up for appearances due to his “sensitive” nature. Pink Floyd’s Nick Mason confessed that he was too scared to ask Beck to join the band after Syd Barrett quit. Beck was also known to be asked to join the Rolling Stones, but left the hotel where they met after deciding it wasn’t for him.

And yet it seems that this very specific musician has found something in Depp – who is not even remotely in his league as a guitarist – to enjoy.

Both men emphasize artistic integrity above all else, which is a band. Depp has come to hate the Pirates Of The Caribbean movies that made him so famous.

He also has — as we saw in those infamous videos of him breaking kitchen cabinets — a temper. They share a taste for the surreal and quixotic, and both take politics and culture very seriously.

They also seem to “understand” each other’s sense of humor. Beck once said, “One of my touchstones is humor. I need to have people around me with a certain kind of humor. I can’t deal with people who don’t have a sense of humor.’

It’s a measure of the actor’s dedication to the musical venture that he travels in the humble way you’d expect from Jeff Beck rather than Johnny Depp.

For example, he stayed in London on Monday and Tuesday at the Queen’s Gate Hotel in Kensington, West London. It’s a luxury hotel in a lovely Victorian building, handy for the Royal Albert Hall, and costs around £200 a night.

But it’s a world away from the £10,000-a-night butler’s suite in Corinthia, where he stayed when he was in London for his 2020 High Court performance. This week, he’s traveling with the rest of the band in a large silver van. , and even with his own luggage. The careless financial surplus that caused him to spend £4 million firing the ashes of writer Hunter S. Thompson into space (he played the writer’s alter ego in the 1998 film Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas) and dropping it £25,000 a month worth of wine seems to be a distant memory.

Depp, pictured here with bar manager Lauren Whittington at Newcastle's Bridge Tavern, was harassed in the pub on Wednesday night

Depp, pictured here with bar manager Lauren Whittington at Newcastle’s Bridge Tavern, was harassed in the pub on Wednesday night

He seems to enjoy the quiet delights of East Sussex and is often seen in Beck’s local pub, the Middle House in Mayfield. Last month, he toured the Folly Wildlife Rescue animal center in Kent, of which Beck is a patron, and was photographed cradling an orphaned badger named Freddie Mercury.

However, he was harassed at the Bridge Tavern in Newcastle on Wednesday night. Naomi Holliday, an assistant manager in training at the pub, said he came in unannounced around 5pm: ‘He just came in. He sat at the table in the corner, ordered fish and chips with his brown ale and then drank a Guinness as well. He was very sweet.’

As the news spread and the crowd gathered, Depp and friends were moved to an upstairs room for privacy.

Mrs. Holliday said, “No one was bothering Johnny inside, but there were some people waiting outside, which you can understand. People were just excited that he was here.

“I need to talk to him in the outdoor area. He asked about Newcastle as he had never been there and he was interested in the Tyne Bridge and the pub. He seemed genuinely interested, and for him to come here was great.

“He was the healthiest guy ever and he liked to stop and talk to people. There was no lawsuit or anything like that. We’re Geordies, so we like to keep it casual. We will probably never have such a service again.’

General manager Janine Latchford said: ‘He was the most beautiful man I’ve ever seen. My assistant is heavily pregnant and he told her how wonderful it was to be a parent. He was really sober; he was sweet. It’s been the most surreal day of my life.’

After the tour, Depp will enjoy some free time, most likely in Sussex with Beck, and catch up with his children Lily-Rose, 23, a model who lives mainly in Los Angeles, and Jack, 20, who splits his time between London and Paris. .

I’m told that his agent has already received numerous offers for work in movies and TV, although he will probably take his time deciding what to commit to.

“This is a huge trauma for Johnny and it will take him a while to process it all,” said a source. “The music is very important to him and he is committed to it. It was in the diary as something he would definitely do. Then he’ll take a break.’

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