Javier Bardem may soon be going from Bond Villain to Ghost Pirate. While development on Pirates of the Caribbean 5 has been extremely slow, things are finally starting to pick up in anticipation of filming beginning in February 2015. Directors Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg (Kon-Tiki) were hired over a year ago, but then word went quiet as Disney worked to bring the budget down. With Johnny Depp’s schedule cleared after he finishes Alice in Wonderland 2, production is finally set to get underway in Australia early next year. And as filming looks to begin, Rønning and Sandberg are starting to put together their cast. The first piece in the puzzle is the villain, and Bardem is the one with the offer to take the role. More after the jump.
The folks over at The Wrap were the first to report that Bardem is in early talks to play the villain in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, but THR adds that the character is that of a ghost captain who blames Sparrow for the death of his brother and sets out in search of a supernatural object that will aid him. Christoph Waltz was rumored for the role at one point, but Bardem currently has the offer and is in discussions to sign on. Bardem’s wife, Penelope Cruz, appeared in the previous film On Stranger Tides.
THR adds that Dead Men Tell No Tales will feature a co-starring love interest for Sparrow, a woman who is accused of being a witch, and that Geoffrey Rush will reprise his role as Barbosa. There have also been rumors that Orlando Bloom might be making a return appearance as Will Turner.
I’m a fan of Gore Verbinski’s initial trio of Pirates films even if the third one overstays its welcome a bit, but director Rob Marshall’s fourth film On Stranger Tides was a big misfire. I’m still not sold on the idea of Jack Sparrow as the lead of the Pirates films—the reason the first three worked is because Sparrow wasn’t the central focus; a little Jack Sparrow goes a long way. But Bardem’s casting is promising and I’m intrigued to see what Rønning and Sandberg can add to the franchise.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales will open in theaters on July 7, 2017.