Jerry Bruckheimer Promises All Future Pirates Films Will Be Standalone Stories

Worried that Pirates of the Caribbean 4 might not wrap up conclusively, or leave dangling threads? Worse still, are you concerned that its success (I think it’s going to be a smash) would lead to another pair of intertwined, cliffhanger-cleaved sequels like the shot back-to-back Pirates 2 and 3?

Well, Jerry Bruckheimer has promised that from here on out, each Pirates yarn is going to be left unplaited. He was speaking to USA Today, relating what he’s learned from test screenings of this year’s fourth chapter, On Stranger Tides.

Bruckheimer said:

The audience told us what they loved about it is that it was fresh, it was new, it was a whole new story. So that will carry over into the next one, too, to give it something fresh and different. As long as the audience embraces this one, we’ll certainly try to make another one. It’s really up to Johnny. He loves the character.

And USA today say:

Bruckheimer says On Stranger Tides and future Pirates flicks will be stand-alone stories continuing the adventures of Depp’s woozy buccaneer Capt. Jack Sparrow.

Tell me, please, if this is a sensible move.

I’m interested in how this might indicate a cultural shift. I recall how exciting it was when The Empire Strikes Back was closed out on a cliffhanger, or when I read that Back to the Future 2 and 3 were going to feature interwoven plot threads. Maybe we’re done with that now, though, as a viewing public. Maybe we feel a bit burned after hanging on to favourite shows for season after season only to see them fail to conclude in any satisfactory way.

Yes, Lost, I’m looking at you.

It’s possible that the motivation is simply something like “We can’t give Captain Jack too much of a character arc, so let’s just make this ‘the many adventures of sozzled Jack’ and see how that goes down”. He can be the new James Bond – less well groomed, less obviously drunk and even more difficult to recast.

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