The reboot of Disney’s ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ franchise is now in perilous tides, as the writing pair Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick jumped ship. The two were in talks to scribe the film that would redirect the franchise without Johnny Depp. Now it is unclear what will happen next.
The extremely sought out duo are famous for the ‘Zombieland’ and ‘Deadpool’ franchises. This year will have two films from them: Michael Bay’s ‘Six Underground’ starring Ryan Reynolds at Netflix, and Sony’s 10-year-later sequel ‘Zombieland: Double Tap.’ Meanwhile, their ‘Clue’ remake, also with Ryan Reynolds, is in the casting stages, with Stephan James possibly joining the film.
Additionally, their screenplay for Netflix’s ‘Spiderhead’ will be directed by Joseph Kosinski, once he finishes ‘Top Gun: Maverick.’ Finally, last year there was a report the duo would be writing the screenplay for Ben Affleck’s next directing vehicle, with Matt Damon starring. There hasn’t been much news on that since, but Affleck and Damon bought the movie rights for the true-crime Daily Beast story, and will be producing.
With $4.5 billion in worldwide box office and $2.5 billion more in global merchandise since 2003, the ‘Pirates’ franchise has been lucrative. However, the situation with Depp is unsavory, and his high salary did not help in the matter. Thus, Disney film production chief Sean Bailey made the plan to retool and relaunch the film series. That is where is Reese and Wernick came in.
Now, the once genius opportunity to reinvent the now 16-year-old franchise has dissipated. So, there are two options for Disney. They can simply find replacement writer(s). Or, they can let the ‘Pirates’ sail away into the sunset, never to be seen again.
Will Disney try again? Or, will they give up entirely? Will Disney invest in a television series for their upcoming Disney+ streaming service? Or, will a ‘Pirates’ show be too much of a financial risk? We’ll just have to find out next time, on Disneyball Z.