Johnny Depp' s production company, Infinitum Nihil (do you think he' d sue me if I named my production company "Nihilistic Infinity?") has acquired the rights to the Nick Tosches novel In the Hand of Dante and the announcement has people talking. And what everyone is saying is: Johnny Depp has a production company? While not exactly confidential, the company, founded in 2004, hasn' t gotten a lot of press until this latest announcement in Variety, and is described on Wikipedia as "Depp' s best kept secret." I read the trades nearly every day, and I have to say, "Johnny Depp has a production company?" was my first thought, too. Followed immediately by "Geez, ' Infinitum Nihil' has more 'I' s' than 'Mississippi.' "
While not the company' s first film--Depp will star in the Hunter S. Thompson adaptation The Rum Diary in March for Infinitum--In the Hand of Dante marks the start of a real push into the business with the company acquiring the rights to several books for film adaptation, including Dark Shadows for Warner Brothers, The Invention of Hugo Cabret which will be directed by Ice Age' s Chris Wedge, and the Gregory David Roberts book Shantaram, among others. In the Hand of Dante will be a potential star vehicle for Depp, its plot revolving around Dante' s "The Divine Comedy," and tells parallel storylines involving Dante in 14th-century Italy as he tries to complete the masterwork, and a contemporary storyline involving Tosches (whom Depp would play), who is asked to authenticate what might be Dante's original manuscript.
Depp should have his hands full, as before Dante can get rolling, he has starring turns to take in Tim Burton' s Alice in Wonderland, a fourth Pirates of the Caribbean, and a stint in The Lone Ranger. Though I wouldn' t be surprised if he also found the time in there to acquire the rights to a few more books .