In addition to the big franchise news that Jurassic Park IV will be opening in 2014, Disney has just announced the screenwriter for Pirates of the Caribbean 5. Jeff Nathanson (Catch Me If You Can) has been tapped to pen the fifth installment of the property kept afloat by star Johnny Depp as Cap’n Jack Sparrow. Depp was “close” to signing on for the film back in 2011, but has yet to officially do so. It’s also unclear whether previous co-stars like Geoffrey Rush and Keira Knightley will return. What is clear is that the multi-billion-dollar franchise is sailing forward. Hit the jump for more on Nathanson and Pirates of the Caribbean 5.
Variety reports that Nathanson will script Pirates of the Caribbean 5. While Catch Me If You Can was well-written, the rest of Nathanson’s achievements are not so shiny. His other projects include: Speed 2: Cruise Control; Rush Hour 2 and Rush Hour 3; Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and Tower Heist. Yikes. Variety also reports that Nathanson will pen the adaptation of The 39 Clues.
As for Pirates of the Caribbean 5, we know that previous reports about the film shooting in and around Puerto Rico turned out to be erroneous and we know that Penelope Cruz hasn’t received any offers of scripts. Not much to go on. What we can count on is that Depp will be courted to return for a fifth film as the man is a box office treasure trove. Two of the four films (Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest and Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides) are billion-dollar earners with spots in the top ten all-time box offices, while a third (Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End) sits just under a billion in the 16th overall spot. Yo ho!