A few years ago, we heard about Disney’s attempt to revive the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise by getting Academy Award nominee Margot Robbie to lead the new installment.
Although that dream is dead, Robbie just disclosed it to Vanity Fair. “We had an idea, and we were developing it for a while, ages ago, to have more of a female-led — not totally female-led, but just a different kind of story — which we thought would’ve been really cool,” she said. “But I guess they don’t want to do it.”
Johnny Depp will not return to the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.
Another Pirates project is in the making, and this one is written by franchise veteran Ted Elliott and Chernobyl creator Craig Mazin. Mazin is currently the showrunner of HBO’s The Last of Us. That’s an enormous responsibility, so it wouldn’t be surprising if this other Pirates movie were also dead in the water, although we haven’t heard anything regarding that one yet.
Neither of these projects would involve Johnny Depp, whose Captain Jack Sparrow made up the center of the franchise. That both makes sense, as Depp has been involved in controversy over the last few years, and it makes no sense because I don’t know if the Pirates franchise is that great to escape the shadow of the man who took it to where it is now.
But maybe we should just let it be. Yes, Hollywood (and especially Disney) wants everlasting franchises, but there have been precisely one good Pirates of the Caribbean movie — 2003 original —and it all went downhill. Disney might have some other ideas to explore.
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