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After appearing to walk the plank just last month, the undeveloped, female-centric script for a new Pirates of the Caribbean movie with Margot Robbie attached to star may not have met its watery demise just yet.
A possible reprieve, of sorts, for the project first announced two years ago came this weekend by ship’s captain (aka producer) Jerry Bruckheimer, who shared with Collider that the potential film’s story — which Robbie said in November had likely been sunk for good — could still strike gold for Disney…after, that is, a separate Pirates script he’s had locked away makes landfall at the studio first.
“I think that that script will come forward at a certain point,” said the super-producer. “We developed two different stories for Pirates and the other one’s going forward first, so that’s what we’re working on, to try to get that one made."
That’s almost as vague as a scribbled “X” on a buried treasure map, but Bruckheimer’s remarks nevertheless rekindle the flame of a long-flickering swashbuckler story that appeared, for a moment at least, to have been permanently extinguished. Just last month, Robbie told Vanity Fair she was resigned to never seeing her version of the project all the way to shore.
“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,” said Robbie, whose name has been associated with the more female-focused take since all the way back in the summer of 2020 — a full year before she reprised her role as Harley Quinn in James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad.
A lot, in fact, has happened in Pirates-land since the Robbie script was first revealed. Disney disembarked franchise star Johnny Depp from the series after a hugely successful five-film collaboration with Bruckheimer, thanks to the public swirl of controversy over the then-emerging allegations of abuse levied against him by former spouse Amber Heard. Bruckheimer, meanwhile, already had revealed that two future film treatments were in the works — a pair of options that now seem to favor the “other” script (that is, the one without Robbie) for the inevitable sixth Pirates film, based on Bruckheimer’s latest comments.
Details on the Pirates of the Caribbean sequel that does appear to be moving forward are definitely still as mysterious as a lurking galleon hidden in the ocean mist. Collider notes that longtime Pirates writer Ted Elliott is presumed to be returning to pen the sixth movie’s script, this time in partnership with HBO creative powerhouse Craig Mazin (Chernobyl, The Last of Us). Beyond that, though, little else about the project is known, including who’ll be joining the cast or when the movie might board theaters with a release date.
Looking for more family-friendly movies in the meantime? Check out The Goonies, Night at the Museum, Journey to the Center of the Earth and more, streaming now on Peacock.