LONDON – Johnny Depp stirred up the U.K. press corps Monday, telling the BBC that he's "probably not too far away" from quitting acting.
Depp, talking to BBC Breakfast ahead of the U.K. rollout of The Lone Ranger in British cinemas on Aug. 9, said while he isn't going to be "dropping out any second," he's mulling retirement from screen work.
The star, who recently told Rolling Stone magazine he was thinking of ending his acting career, said he recently added up all the words he says per year and realized that he says more dialog written by others than his own personal utterances. "You start thinking about that as kind of an insane option for a human being," he added.
Depp, a global A-lister, always attracts a media frenzy when he's on the road pushing his latest release.
He said he would like to focus on "quieter" pursuits soon, without revealing what that might be.
His comments to the BBC were picked up all around the world, making the news as far afield as TVNZ in New Zealand.
Disney and producer Jerry Bruckheimer will be hoping that Depp and his headline grabbing retirement threats provide a boxoffice bump to The Lone Ranger as it hits international screens after being declared a flop at the U.S. box office by industry analysts and casual commentators alike.
Bruckheimer and director Gore Verbinski have worked with Depp regularly, having brought the highly lucrative The Pirates of the Caribbean franchise to the screen together.