Turns Out Johnny Depp’s Time As Jack Sparrow Had A Huge Impact On John Boyega’s Career

John Boyega in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker

You can never really know where your life is going to take you and where inspiration might come from. John Boyega, it seems, had already decided that he wanted to peruse acting full time while he was attending the University of Greenwich, but then, while there, something happened that Boyega considers a sign that acting was what he was meant to do, and it's all thanks to Johnny Depp and Captain Jack Sparrow.

It seems that one day while John Boyega was attending class, a pyrotechnic explosion went off as part of a film shoot that was happening on campus that day. The young man ran out to see what was going on, and what he saw, he tells THR, he felt was a sign from above telling him what he needed to do with his life. According to Boyega...

We looked down and I saw Johnny Depp on top of two carriages, balancing himself, as Jack Sparrow. I saw what I wanted to do. I thought God sent the whole film set right here. He sent a film that I would love to star in, that I'd love to be a part of. I never went back.

John Boyega apparently means that last part quite literally. He left class that day to watch the Pirates of the Caribbean movie being filmed, and never went back to class. He'd already wanted to dedicate himself to acting and so seeing this all happening in front of him felt like validation. Who knows? Maybe if Captain Jack Sparrow hadn't arrived on that day, John Boyega would have never made the final decision to follow his passion. If that had been the case we would have been robbed of a great actor without even knowing it.

And, of course, there's the added coincidence that it was the filming of a major Disney franchise that inspired John Boyega, and he would go on to play a major role in another big Disney franchise with the Star Wars sequel trilogy. Even Boyega himself could not have predicted such things when he was watching Pirates of the Caribbean being filmed, and yet things work out funny.

Based on the description of the scene, it would appear that Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides was the movie being filmed. It would be released in 2011, which is the same year that Boyega would make is debut. That year he appeared in a few episodes of the BBC series Becoming Human, as well as the critically acclaimed sci-fi film Attack the Block. It apparently didn't take Boyega long to make his mark once he'd decided to do so.

And perhaps John Boyega has now inspired others to follow their passion for acting and we'll be graced by even more great performances by others thanks to people seeing Boyega in the recent Star Wars films or some other future project.

Up next: John Boyega Small Axe: Red, White and Blue Interview

Dirk Libbey
Content Producer/Theme Park Beat

CinemaBlend’s resident theme park junkie and amateur Disney historian, Dirk began writing for CinemaBlend as a freelancer in 2015 before joining the site full-time in 2018. He has previously held positions as a Staff Writer and Games Editor, but has more recently transformed his true passion into his job as the head of the site's Theme Park section. He has previously done freelance work for various gaming and technology sites. Prior to starting his second career as a writer he worked for 12 years in sales for various companies within the consumer electronics industry. He has a degree in political science from the University of California, Davis.  Is an armchair Imagineer, Epcot Stan, Future Club 33 Member.