Fans of Johnny Depp’s Jack Sparrow have taken to Change.org to push two different petitions to have Disney reinstate Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.
The first petition created by a user named Femke simply stated, “I want to keep Johnny Depp as jack sparrow because he made the films extra fun and I just can’t think about a pirates 6 without Johnny Depp.”
Currently, the petition has been signed by 12,811 people and is aiming to reach 15,000 for its next goal.
Here is what some of the petition signers are stating:
Marika Dolinsky writes, “There is only one person who could be Captain Jack Sparrow, Johnny was demonized by Hollywood and the media and wrongly accused, no one gave him a chance, now it has been proven that he is innocent, he should be reinstated in his iconic role.”
Katherine Eschle writes, “He’s bloody amazing and NO ONE will replace him!!!!”
Lindsay Frazer writes, “Pirates of the Caribbean wont be the same if Johnny isn’t Captain Jack Sparrow.”
Monica Frate writes, “Potc is nothing without Jack Sparrow! He made the franchise what it is and Disney should treat Johnny Depp much better.”
Duda C writes, “There’s not anyone else who could play Jack Sparrow, he’s absolutely NOT replaceable! The franchise will never go on without our dear captain, who was fired for unfair reasons.”
Another petition, with the same goal, was created by Riza Siddiqui. Like the first petition, it calls on Disney to return Depp to the Captain’s chair.
That petition also has a much more detailed reason behind it. It points to Depp’s active role in the franchise for almost 20 years. It also points to the fact that the character is so identified with the actor; to separate the two would be quite difficult.
The author, Riza Siddiqui states, “Johnny Depp has been out recently as Captain Jack Sparrow. One of the reasons is his personal issues as well. He has been playing this role since 2003 when we first saw him arriving at the Port Royal in his boat with that epic background music playing.”
“But can you imagine someone else portraying this instead of him? Or no Jack Sparrow at all? Disney is rebooting Dead Men Tell No Tales because of its box office but don’t they know that without Johnny Depp or Jack Sparrow they will sink, they will never be able to reach that horizon they are looking for,” the petition continues.
It adds, “Even if it means nothing to you but please, sign this petition for the ones who REALLY want Johnny Depp as their Captain of the Black Pearl!”
The petition concludes, “They have to bring him back to rule the seas again or we will never watch any Pirates of the Caribbean movie without our Captain.”
Right now, that petition is sitting just under 4,000 signatures.
The petitions come in response to reports in October that Disney would reboot the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise with Deadpool and Zombieland writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick. Initial reporting indicated Depp would not be reprising his role with scriptwriter Stuart Beattie all but confirming it in an interview with DailyMail TV.
Beattie told DailyMail TV, “I think he’s had a great run. Obviously, he’s made that character his own and it’s become the character he’s most famous for now. And kids all over the world love him as that character so I think it’s been great for him, it’s been great for us, so I’m just very, very happy about it.”
Beattie would go on to discuss how Jack Sparrow would be Johnny Depp’s legacy, “I think Jack Sparrow will be his legacy. It’s the only character he’s played five times, it’s the character he dresses up in to visit children in hospitals, it’s what he’ll be remembered for.”
He added, “Before Jack Sparrow came along, [Depp] was considered this kind of quirky, independent actor that made these really cool little Tim Burton films but he was by no means a movie star and a lot of people thought we were crazy for casting him at the time.”
Following the reports in October, Disney would officially confirm that Johnny Depp would no longer be reprising his role as Jack Sparrow in December. Sean Bailey, Disney’s film production chief, spoke to The Hollywood Reporter confirming Depp was no longer attached to the upcoming Pirates of the Caribbean film with Deadpool writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick.
Bailey’s statement came days after Depp’s ex-wife Amber Heard wrote an op-ed in The Washington Post about domestic abuse.
Depp has since filed a lawsuit against Amber Heard over the op-ed. In fact, the lawsuit implies Heard’s op-ed damaged Depp’s reputation and career. It specifically cited Disney dropping Johnny Depp from his role as Captain Jack Sparrow in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.
It reads, “Mr. Depp’s reputation and career were devastated when Ms. Heard first accused him of domestic violence on May 27, 2016. Ms. Heard’s hoax allegations were timed to coincide with the day that Mr. Depp’s film, Alice Through the Looking Glass, was released in theaters. Her op-ed with its false implication that she was a victim of domestic violence at the hands of Mr. Depp, brought new damage to Mr. Depp’s reputation and career. Mr. Depp lost movie roles and faced public scorn.”
It further states, “Just four days after Ms. Heard’s op-ed was first published on December 18, 2018, Disney announced on December 22, 2018 that it was dropping Mr. Depp from his leading role as Captain Jack Sparrow – a role that he created – in the multi-billion-dollar-earning Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.”
As for the planned sixth Pirates of the Caribbean film it has reportedly faced a significant setback. Deadline reports that Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick are no longer working on the project.
They indicate Disney is split on what to do with the franchise. They mention there are rumblings of a potential TV series, while others indicate the franchise might be put on hold for the foreseeable future. Still others note they are looking for new talent to give the franchise a “kick in the pants.”
What do you make of these petitions? Do you want to see Johnny Depp return as Captain Jack Sparrow in a new Pirates of the Caribbean film?