‘Help us mutiny’: Johnny Depp pays surprise visit to London primary school dressed as Jack Sparrow after letter from girl, 9
Last updated at 10:58 AM on 8th October 2010
It’s not every day a Hollywood heart-throb pitches up in your classroom.
But these Greenwich schoolgoers left the rest of Britain’s children – if not parents – green with envy when they had a surprise visit from Johnny Depp yesterday.
The star is currently in south-east London filming the fourth Pirates Of The Caribbean movie On Stranger Tides and arrived at the Meridian Primary School dressed in full character as Captain Jack Sparrow.
He made the one-off trip after nine-year-old pupil Beatrice Delap wrote to the star asking for help staging a ‘mutiny’ against the teachers, as he was filming at the nearby 18th century Old Naval College.
Ahoy there: Johnny Depp meets nine-year-old Meridian Primary School pupil Beatrice Delap and shows the letter she wrote asking him to help ‘budding pirates’ with their ‘mutiny’ against teachers
X marks the spot: The letter that Beatrice wrote to Johnny, who was filming at the Old Naval College next to her school
Budding pirate: Beatrice Delap
The school was told just ten minutes before that Depp would be arriving and two blacked-out cars swept through the school gates.
An onlooker said she heard the most ‘incredible screams of joy’ as the actor, in full make-up, then entered the school.
In an interview on London Tonight after the visit, Beatrice revealed what she had written in the letter to the star – or rather his salty seadog alter ego.
She said: ‘Captain Jack Sparrow, At Meridian Primary School, we are a bunch of budding young pirates and we were having a bit of trouble mutiny-ing against the teachers, and we’d love if you could come and help.
‘Beatrice Delap, aged nine, a budding pirate.’
She said that she was then asked by the star to make herself known from the assembled pupils once he arrived, and gave her a cuddle.
Beatrice marvelled: ‘He gave me a hug and he said, “Maybe we shouldn’t mutiny today ‘cos there are police outside monitoring me.”‘
Police have been a constant presence as filming has progressed at the old college, parts of which have been transformed to look like Georgian London.
Depp has been seen filming scenes in which he jumped from a third-floor window and later balanced on a chariot pulled by galloping horses.
In the movie, Johnny stars alongside Penelope Cruz, who plays an old flame of the crazy ship captain who heads off on a journey to find the fountain of youth.
Stuntman: Johnny in character as Captain Jack Sparrow while filming an action scene for Pirates Of The Caribbean 4: On Stranger Tides in Greenwich last week
The movie, which has already shot in Hawaii, Los Angeles and Puerto Rico, is due for release next summer.
Johnny has got form when it comes to flying visits to fans in London too.
He made a secret visit to Great Ormond Street Hospital in January 2008 to donate �1million to say thank you for saving his daughter’s life, just months after making a clandestine visit to the wards to tell bedtime stories to sick children on the wards dressed as Captain Sparrow.
The then eight-year-old Lily-Rose was treated there in March 2007 when her kidneys failed while he and partner Vanessa Paradis were staying in Richmond, southwest London, together with son Jack John, while Johnny filmed Sweeney Todd at Pinewood Studios in Buckinghamshire.
Nice 1 JD (-: