HitFix's Drew McWeeny and THR have two news items up about Johnny Depp casting - one a new project, another that's been in development for awhile. Both of them would've sounded MUCH more intriguing back before Depp had Pirates4 and Alice In Wonderland in his recent-filmography. But, then, who knows?
First, the more interesting of the two: A biopic of Theodor Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss. That I want to see regardless of whom they cast.
Secondly, his long-gestating do-over of Dashiell Hammett's "The Thin Man," a detective franchise previously adapted into a mega-popular film series starring William Powell and Myrna Loy. This is the one that has "red flag" written all over it. The basic setup is an uber-wealthy married couple, Nick and Nora Charles, who solve crimes and mysteries more-or-less for shits and giggles. The "gimmick?" They're both functional alcoholics, doing their thing while constantly sauced - the book and films having originated in the era before over-drinking was thought of as a "problem" for the upper-class. So... yeah, you can already see what the danger is: It'd be very, VERY easy for this to turn into "Jack Sparrow but as a 40s crimesolver."
I'm curious as to how they plan to translate ANY of it. The original films hold up remarkably well, but it's still pretty jarring how "cute" they play Nick and Nora's vices (seriously - go watch one of the first four or five of these, they really put it away) for modern eyes. I'm not sure that really "works" anymore. The original "Arthur" was the last real 'eccentric rich alcoholism is adorable' movie, and famous MAAD appeared one year later and "Arthur 2" just wasn't as funny.