The Pirates of the Caribbean franchise surely wouldn't have been nearly as successful as it was without the contributions of Johnny Depp as Jack Sparrow, and with Disney currently developing a reboot of the concept with Margot Robbie set to star, the studio is reportedly uninterested in having Depp appear in the film, even in with a small cameo. Given the number of reboots of famous films that have happened over the years, some successors honor what came before them with cameos from original contributors, while it appears that Disney wants to completely disconnect from the legacy that came before it, in addition to the controversies surrounding Depp wanting the studio to keep their distance from the actor.
The Hollywood Reporter recently published a piece chronicling the many controversies surrounding the actor, with some sources in the industry calling him "radioactive" in regards to his reputation, which detailed that Pirates producer Jerry Bruckheimer attempted to make the cameo happen in the new film, but that Disney "balked."
Depp's public controversies were largely ignited in 2016 when his then-wife Amber Heard made allegations of domestic abuse against him, leading to their divorce and him lobbying similar allegations back at her. In the years since those allegations, Depp has been in a number of court cases in hopes of clearing his name, though a number of other reports have emerged in the years since about his erratic behavior, with Depp himself announcing last month that Warner Bros. asked him to leave the upcoming Fantastic Beasts film and that he obliged.
While some will surely point to his recent reputation in the public as the reason Disney wants to avoid a Depp cameo, this is likely compounded by the major studio wanting to entirely revive the franchise with an all-new approach, rather than approach it as any sort of spinoff. While Depp's fame might be waning, Robbie's popularity only grows by the year, not only with fans, but also with critics, as she has received recognition from a variety of organizations for her performances in recent years.
Largely when it comes to adapting one of their animated films into live-action, Disney avoids drawing direct references to its predecessors, likely to cement these stories as timeless tales. It would seem as though they're taking a similar approach to Pirates of the Caribbean and, while the most recent sequel hit theaters in 2017, it's been nearly two decades since the debut film, allowing Robbie's approach to be the film for a new generation.
Stay tuned for details on the new Pirates of the Caribbean.
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