It all started when Denise took on the role of Captain Jack for her own family Halloween event in 2003. Many who saw her were astounded with her uncanny resemblance to that of Johnny Depp himself.
Having been told on several occasions, Denise decided to take a chance by enhancing and perfecting the attire and taught herself the art of make-up and the techniques of sewing over the following 4 years.
She then took on Jack’s mannerisms and worked hard on the visual aspect of the character.
During these years of improvement and study, Denise’s family would join her for those bigger events to pose as individual characters from POTC: her husband, (Barbossa), daughter, (Will Turner), son, (Ragetti) and herself as Captain Jack, have entertained crowds and strutted decks of vessels such as the Lady Washington known as the British brig ‘Interceptor’ in “Curse of the Black Pearl”, and The Bounty as the ‘Black Pearl’ in “Dead Man’s Chest”.
The Captain Jack character has brought Denise to the ‘HIGH SEAS’, if you will. Private ship invites, Tall Ship gun battles, parades, festivals, parties, private dinner functions, newspapers, brochures, media interviews, billboard, just to name a few.
During her travels she has met some fascinating people… ie., some who have graced the sets of POTC during filming. Being a female emulating a male character, does not seem to have hindered the image of the spirited and nefarious character of Captain Jack! In fact, if anything, it has intrigued the “SENSES” of both men and women.
Born in the same year as Johnny Depp, (1963) Denise has been a fan of his for years and grew up watching him on 21 Jump Street, (filmed in British Columbia). Now he is one of the more integral and prestigious actors of all time and graces the screen with such finesse taking pride in each and every character he portrays.
She has extended her interest and dabbled in the dark and vengeful character of Sweeney Todd along with the more colourful, quirky and yet spirited character of the Mad Hatter.
She was asked several years later since the start of her portrayal of Jack, if she had ever tried looking like Johnny Depp himself.
Unsure if she could hide her feminine attributes, she tentatively took on the task, and was able to produce a strong enough resemblance to convince the public that they had indeed seen the real Johnny.
“The beauty of emulating the actual icon, is there are no set rules with already in place “pre set” attire and/or costume ideas along with no real guidelines. Although there is one rule, and that is to remain respectful of the icon himself. As difficult as it is to be another person, (especially a woman trying to be a man), the freedom in this case is to be able to chose clothes that suit the body type which gives me a better chance to be more accurate as I possibly can to look like Mr. Depp, or rather, at least a man”, states Denise. She is quite pleased with her attempts of the icon himself. “Before applying any make-up, I look upon myself as a blank canvas. Trying to look like someone else or any sort of character, is truly a form of art.”
As she enjoys the ride, Denise can only hope her journey continues and takes her to new heights and places she has yet to explore.