Craig Mazin, best known for his work on The Last of Us, says Disney has given his new Pirates of the Caribbean movie the green light despite it being too weird. “We pitched it and thought there’s no way they’re buying it, it’s too weird. And they did!” he said via Variety. “And then [Ted Elliot] wrote a fantastic script, and the strike happened and everyone’ waiting around.”
Two Pirates of the Caribbean movies are in the works, one with Margot Robbie, and another written by Craig Mazin, showrunner of The Last of Us.
In 2020, several reports surfaced about Disney developing two Pirates of the Caribbean movies: One would be a reboot led by Margot Robbie. A sixth film in the original franchise was also in the works before the WGA and SAG-AFTRA strikes, written by Mazin and Ted Elliott, who co-wrote the first four films in the highly popular series.
Meanwhile, in 2022, Robbie told Vanity Fair that her Pirates of the Caribbean movie, penned by Christina Hodson, had been scrapped. “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.”
Franchise producer Jerry Bruckheimer later clarified Hodson’s statement, saying Robbie’s Pirates of the Caribbean movie will happen at some point. However, Disney was giving priority to the script by Mazin and Elliot. The plot of this particular Pirates film is being kept secret, and it remains unclear if Johnny Depp will return as Jack Sparrow following his libel trial with Amber Heard.
“We pitched it and thought there’s no way they’re buying it, it’s too weird. And they did! And then [Ted Elliot] wrote a fantastic script, and the strike happened and everyone’ waiting around.”Craig Mazin describing his Pirates of the Caribbean script
The Pirates of the Caribbean movie franchise is a series of swashbuckling adventure films produced by Jerry Bruckheimer and distributed by Walt Disney Pictures. The franchise’s central character is Captain Jack Sparrow, a witty and eccentric pirate known for his unorthodox methods and love for rum. Each film follows Jack on various adventures and encounters with supernatural threats.
Viewers were first introduced to Sparrow and the cursed Aztec gold in 2003’s Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl. The movie, directed by Gore Verbinski, was a surprise hit and led to several sequels. Dead Man’s Chest was released in 2006 and saw Jack Sparrow seeking to settle a blood debt with the ghostly Davy Jones.
This was followed by three more Pirates of the Caribbean movies, including At World’s End in 2007, On Stranger Tides in 2011, and Dead Men Tell No Tales in 2017. The films collectively grossed over $4.5 billion worldwide. The two latter films each crossed the $1 billion mark at the global box office. The franchise also spawned merchandise and even a video game.
“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.”Margot Robbie on her Pirates of the Caribbean film
The initial Pirates of the Caribbean film, The Curse of the Black Pearl, received critical acclaim for its inventive story, humor, and Johnny Depp’s iconic portrayal of Captain Jack Sparrow. However, the sequels received mixed reviews, with some critics feeling they were too convoluted or lacked the freshness of the first film. Still, they continued to perform well at the box office.
Besides his work as the co-creator of HBO’s Emmy-nominated series The Last of Us, Mazin has extensive experience scripting Hollywood sequels. Notable titles include The Hangover II, The Huntsman: Winter’s War, Identity Thief, and the biographical drama Rocket Man. Mazin’s contributions to these films demonstrate his versatility as a screenwriter across genres.
The Pirates of the Caribbean franchise has been a major success for Disney financially and in terms of cultural impact. It will be interesting to see if the sixth movie matches its predecessors’ success. However, due to the ongoing strikes in Hollywood, it is unclear when it will be released.