Per Vanity Fair, Margot Robbie’s Pirates of the Caribbean reboot has sunk to Davy Jones’ Locker of unmade films. Despite an announcement in June of 2020 that we’d be getting a reboot of the iconic blockbuster franchise with Robbie in the lead and a script by Birds of Prey and Bumblebee scribe Christina Hodson, the powers that be at Disney appear to have lost interest in the project.
Margot Robbie on Pirates of the Caribbean Reboot
Robbie told 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… But I guess they don’t want to do it.”
The cancellation of Margot Robbie’s Pirates movie comes as a bit of a surprise given the talent involved. Robbie is a largely beloved Oscar-winner who has shown to be a box office draw in both adult-aimed fare and summer blockbuster, while Hodson’s Birds and Bumblebee have slowly but surely amassed passionate fanbases.
Curiously, Disney also began development on an entirely separate Pirates movie, this one written by original franchise co-writer Ted Elliott and Chernobyl creator Craig Mazin. Longtime franchise producer Jerry Bruckheimer was attached to both projects. While we’re unsure exactly how far along in development each of these scripts were, Bruckheimer confirmed in an interview with The Sunday Times in May of this year that the ship that is the Pirates franchise would no longer see Johnny Depp as its captain:
“Yes. We’re talking to Margot Robbie. We are developing two Pirates scripts — one with her, one without,” Bruckheimer said when asked about the future of the Pirates franchise. “[Will Depp be back?] Not at this point. The future is yet to be decided.”
For many years, the Pirates franchise has been one of Disney’s most successful investments, with the 5 installments each being huge earners for the studio.
Dead Man’s Chest sailed past mixed reviews to a cool $1 billion global haul matched by On Stranger Tides, and even Dead Men Tell No Tales (Also known as Salazar’s Revenge depending on which part of the world you live in) delivered a domestic take of $172 million and an international one of $622 million. That makes it clear that even if the franchise isn’t drumming up enormous business stateside, there is still a hungry audience for the franchise across the seas.
Of course, with Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s attention-nabbing trial having captured the world’s eyes over the past few months, it will be interesting to see how much of a box-office draw they’ll be in future films.
Though it wasn’t the original intention, Johnny Depp’s Captain Jack Sparrow quickly became the lead character of the franchise and the one most often associated with it. It’s unclear how much Sparrow would have featured in Robbie’s film, if at all, but given the combination of Robbie’s star power and audiences’ seemingly boundless interest in reboots of iconic properties, it’s possible the film could have been a hit with Margot Robbie captaining the vessel for a change of pace.
What makes this especially interesting is Robbie’s claim that her film would have attempted a different kind of story for the franchise, which has often been criticized for repeating plot elements and over-convolution. This new film could have smoothed out the sails for the dogged franchise to continue box-office domination, but sadly we’ll never know.
What do you think of Margot Robbie’s Pirates of the Caribbean film walking the plank? Were you excited to see what she brought to the franchise? What’s your favorite Margot Robbie performance? What’s your favorite installment in the Pirates franchise? Would you have seen both proposed Pirates reboots? Tell us yer tale in the comments below as well as our Twitter, Mateys.
Source: Vanity Fair