'Chernobyl' creator to reboot the 'Pirates of the Caribbean' series for Disney

Johnny Depp as Jack Sparrow (Credit: Disney)
Johnny Depp as Jack Sparrow (Credit: Disney)

Craig Mazin, the creator of celebrated HBO miniseries Chernobyl, has been signed up by Disney to reboot the Pirates of the Caribbean series, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Mazin both wrote and created to historical series, about the collapse of the Chernobyl nuclear reactor in 1986.

And while the maker of such a harrowing drama might seem an odd choice for the family-friendly fantasy-adventure franchise, Mazin has made some lighter material too.

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He also wrote the comedy movies Identity Thief with Jason Bateman and Melissa McCarthy, The Hunstman: Winter's War and all three Hangover movies.

Mazin's signing up follows Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick, the duo behind Deadpool, pulling out earlier this year.

He will be working alongside Ted Elliott, who has written four of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, including the first one, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl.

First launching in 2003, there was some skepticism that Disney could turn a movie based on the Disney theme park ride into a hit.

But with Johnny Depp playing drunken sailor Captain Jack Sparrow, four more movies were spawned, earning the studio nearly $5 billion at the worldwide box office.

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News emerged last year that the franchise was to be rebooted, and it's not yet known whether Depp will be back on board.

The actor is currently in the thick of a defamation lawsuit with his ex-wife Amber Heard.

Depp and Heard divorced in 2016, but Heard has since claimed that she was the victim of domestic abuse while married to the actor.

One of the claims made in Depp’s suit against Heard is that the allegations of abuse lost him his multi-million dollar contract with Disney to make the Pirates movies, though that remains officially unconfirmed by Disney.

Depp has long denied the abuse allegations, alleging instead that he was the victim of abuse at the hands of Heard, and is now suing her for $50 million.