Disney boss refuses to rule out Johnny Depp's comeback as Jack Sparrow
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A senior executive at Disney hasn't ruled out the possibility of Johnny Depp returning to the Pirates of the Caribbean fold after his legal saga with ex-wife Amber Heard.
Depp had previously been considered out of the franchise and had said himself that he wouldn’t return even for ‘$300 million’, but with his recent victory over Heard in a US court, it seems that Disney might have left the door open.
The actor played Jack Sparrow five times in the huge adventure series, with his last appearance being in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales in 2017.
There is a sixth film in the pipeline, and stars such as Orlando Bloom and Kaya Scodelario have said that they’d be up for it.
In 2018, it was announced that Depp had been dropped from the sixth instalment in the franchise.
After Heard claimed that Depp had been physically and emotionally abusive to her during their marriage, he pursued two defamation trials on either side of the Atlantic Ocean.
The US-based trial saw Depp victorious, and whilst Heard said that she’d be appealing the verdict, she ultimately settled out of court in December.
During his testimony, the actor admitted that he felt ‘betrayed’ after Disney cut ties with him ahead of a result to the trial.
Describing how he felt, he said: "Hurt. Blinding hurt.
“It was like somebody hit me in the back of the head with a 2x4... Captain Jack Sparrow was a character I built from the ground up and was something that I, of course, put a lot of [myself] into the character and also having worked on these films with these people and added much of myself, much of my own re-writing of the dialogue and scenes and jokes.
“I didn't quite understand how, after that long relationship and quite a successful relationship certainly for Disney, that suddenly I was guilty until proven innocent."
However, he did admit that he wanted a ‘proper goodbye’ for the characters, adding: "My feeling was that these characters should be able to have their proper goodbye, as it were.
“A franchise can only last for so long and there's a way to end a franchise like that and I thought that the characters deserved to have their way out, to end the franchise on a very good note.
“I planned on continuing until it was time to stop."
Well, now Disney Studios Motion Picture Production President Sean Bailey has left a crack in the door that could spell a way back for Depp.
On the proposed new Pirates film, he said: “We think we have a really good, exciting story that honours the films that have come before but also has something new to say.”
Addressing the prospect of Depp appearing, he said that Disney is ‘noncommittal at this point’.
OK, it’s not a ringing endorsement, but neither is it a flat-out refusal.
So, we might see Johnny Depp back in Jack Sparrow’s trademark hat once again before the whole franchise is wrapped up.
Only time will tell.