An animated Pirates of the Caribbean series is being developed for Disney+.
The Pirates of the Caribbean franchise is being revived as an animated series on Disney+. According to our trusted and proven sources, a Pirates of the Caribbean cartoon series is currently in development, which could potentially make it the first new entry in the franchise since 2017’s Dead Men Tell No Tales. The future of the popular Walt Disney series has been up in the air for quite some time, so this seems promising for a new start for one of the biggest film franchises of all time.
It also makes a lot of sense that the Walt Disney Company would be looking to turn Pirates of the Caribbean into an animated series on their proprietary streaming platform, for a number of reasons. For one, various branches of the mega-company have been increasingly leaning on Disney+ for their new content over much riskier (and more expensive) feature film releases, so Pirates of the Caribbean going that direction fits in with the overall strategy. For another, going the animated route could potentially allow Disney to avoid the huge, heavily eyeliner-d elephant in the room: Johnny Depp.
While the Pirates of the Caribbean was initially presented as a vehicle for Orlando Bloom (then white-hot from the success of the contemporaneous Lord of the Rings franchise) and Keira Knightley (who was breaking out after the surprise hit Bend It Like Beckham), it became quickly apparent that Johnny Depp’s Captain Jack Sparrow was the star of the series. Over the course of the next four sequels, Johnny Depp would become the deadlocked, drunken face of the series, which would inadvertently paint both the franchise and Depp himself into a corner. Once it became clear that Captain Jack Sparrow was the center of Pirates of the Caribbean, it became increasingly difficult to imagine the series without Depp.
However, Johnny Depp’s plummeting public image in the 2010s and his ongoing, widely publicized, highly contentious legal battle with his estranged former spouse Amber Heard made him a risky proposition for the famously risk-averse, family-friendly Disney. Combined with Johnny Depp’s comments that he would never work for Disney again, the future of the Pirates of the Caribbean has seemed to bounce from word of Margot Robbie starring in a spin-off or Dwayne Johnson being courted for a leading role. In contrasted, a Disney+ animated series would be an easy, relatively safe way for Disney to test the waters for the Pirates of the Caribean, so to speak.
An animated Pirates of the Caribbean series could allow Disney to recast Captain Jack Sparrow without necessarily drawing the fan anger, much in the same way that Marvel’s What If…? series cast Mick Wingert to voice Tony Stark rather than the presumably much more expensive Robert Downey Jr. An animated series could also potentially act as a ramp-up to a new feature film or a reboot by introducing characters or explaining what happened to old ones without the enormous cost of a theatrical release. As with both Star Wars and the MCU, it is clear that Disney+ is the way of the future.