Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (in 3D) Starring Johnny Depp (Edward Scissorhands, Sleepy Hollow), Penelope Cruz (Gothika, Vicky Christina Barcelona), Geoffrey Rush (House on Haunted Hill, The King’s Speech), Ian McShane (Deadwood [tv]), Kevin McNally (Demons [tv]), Sam Claflin (The Lost Future [tv]) and Astrid Berges-Frisbey.  Produced by Jerry Bruckheimer (Beverly Hills Cop, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation [tv]). Directed by Rob Marshall (Chicago, Nine).

If you asked anyone who watched Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest (2006) and At World’s End (2007) if he/she wanted to see another sequel with Jack Sparrow, you would be hard pressed to find him/her saying “YES!” or even just a semi-enthusiastic “yes.”  Johnny Depp, the star of the Pirates franchise, didn’t even watch the two movies though he did with the first, The Curse of the Black Pearl (and he, like most actors, does not watch his own work).  He felt that the back-to-back films were both “plot-driven and complicated” and that “they had to invent a trilogy out of nowhere.”  When talking to Gore Verbinski [the director of the first three films] on the set, Depp would say “I don’t really know what this means.”  Verbinski simply responded with “Neither do I, but let’s just shoot it.”  Although Disney raked in over $732 million with its #1 (Dead Man’s Chest) and #6 (At World’s End) top ten movies of all time (as of 2010), the problems clearly translated onto the screen, leaving audiences scratching their heads and hesitant about a fourth film.

This was a wake up call for Depp and producer Jerry Bruckheimer.  The duo have a love for the character of Jack Sparrow and the franchise, and jumped into action with the script for On Stranger Tides.  The fourth is not only 30 minutes shorter in length than the previous movie but has also started fresh with no storylines from the past (meaning no Orlando Bloom or Keira Knightley).  Depp and Bruckheimer are giving audiences “something character-driven” and “something fun and irreverant” (according to Depp) while toying with Captain Jack’s past.  That past is new character, Angelica, played by Penelope Cruz, who Jack feels regret over (or is that regret over the past two sequels?).  Also signing on are Ian McShane as the villainous Blackbeard and Geoffrey Rush’s likeable returning frenemy Captain Barbossa.  New to Pirates is director Rob Marshall, known for musical dramas and Memoirs of a Geisha, after Verbinski vacated the director’s chair (he chose not to return but no reason was issued).

After opening weekend (starting at midnight), we’ll find out if the Captain (Jack) will go down with the ship or if we’ll see him sailing the high seas again in Pirates of the Caribbean: 5.

Synopsis:  Jack Sparrow (Depp) finds himself crossing paths and swords with the enigmatic Angelica (Cruz).  When she forces him aboard the Queen Anne’s Revenge, the ship of the legendary pirate Blackbeard (McShane), Jack finds himself on an unexpected journey to the fabled Fountain of Youth.  Along the way, Jack must use all his wiles to deal with the barbarous Blackbeard and his crew of zombies, Angelica, the ravishing pirate with whom Jack shares shares a dubious past, and the beautiful, enchanting mermaids whose masterful cunning can lure even the most seasoned sailor to his doom.  The indestructible Captain Hector Barbossa (Rush), Captain Jack’s longtime comrade Joshamee Gibbs (McNally), Philip (Claflin), a stalwart missionary, and the mysterious mermaid Syrena (Berges-Frisbey) join in on the adventure.  courtesy of Disney

Source: Entertainment Weekly

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