Johnny Depp discusses Pirates of the Caribbean in 2017
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Pirates of the Caribbean may be a billion-dollar franchise for Disney after five films and counting, but the original movie The Curse of the Black Pearl was far from a sure-fire hit. The last big-budget swashbuckling adventure to hit cinemas was 1995’s Cutthroat Island, which was such a box office bomb that the losses led to the closure of Carolco Pictures. Basing a Pirates movie on one of their theme park rides was going to be a big gamble for Disney when it was released in 2003.
Originally, Disney had considered the likes of Matthew McConaughey for Captain Jack Sparrow.
This was mainly because they wanted the character to resemble Burt Lancaster, the star of 1952’s The Crimson Pirate, a far cry from Depp’s take.
Others who could have ended up playing the lead included Jim Carrey, Michael Keaton and Christopher Walken.
Robert De Niro even turned down Captain Jack for fear that the movie would be a giant flop after Cutthroat Island.
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