Disney has finally settled on a director for the upcoming fifth installment of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, and it’s a somewhat surprising choice. We learned earlier this month that Disney had narrowed the director list down to Fredrik Bond (The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman), Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg (Kon-Tiki), and Rupert Sanders (Snow White and the Huntsman), and now Deadline reports that the directing duo of Rønning and Sandberg has landed the job. Rønning and Sandberg are best known for helming last year’s Norwegian action/adventure film Kon-Tiki, which was nominated for the Best Foreign Language Oscar. Hit the jump for more.
Producer Jerry Bruckheimer is said to have been keen on Rønning and Sandberg landing the Pirates of the Caribbean 5 gig from the start, and he, Disney, and Johnny Depp have all signed off on the duo to take over directing duties from On Stranger Tides helmer Rob Marshall for the next Pirates pic. Negotiations are underway, and Rønning and Sandberg are poised to start prepping Pirates 5 immediately in order to start production later this year or in early January.
Pirates 5 took a bit of time to put together, as Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides raked in over $1 billion at the box office but suffered from a mixed critical reception. Marshall didn’t really seem like he knew how to handle a large-scale action/adventure pic, but I’m eager to see how Rønning and Sandberg adjust to the world of tentpole moviemaking. Disney is apparently bullish on Pirates 5 after a recent script rewrite from Jeff Nathanson (Catch Me If You Can). It’s unclear which cast members—if any—will be returning alongside Depp, but we should hear more about the film soon as the production startdate looms closer. Pirates of the Caribbean 5 will open in theaters on July 10, 2015.