The first Pirates of the Caribbean remains a Grade-A blockbuster. The sequels, well, those are a mixed bag. I’ll go to my grave fighting for the much-derided Dead Man’s Chest and At World’s End, but the fourth and fifth movies? Hard pass. Over the years the Pirates franchise has only dwindled, with increasingly awful reviews and less impressive box office numbers. The fifth film, Dead Men Tell No Tales, earned 29 percent on Rotten Tomatoes and only made $172 million domestically, compared to the first film’s $432 million (though it did bring in bigger numbers overseas). So it makes sense that Disney may be planning to bring some fresh blood to the dying franchise.

Deadline reports that Disney is considering to reboot the Pirates franchise. They’ve eyed two notable names to help them do it: Deadpool and Zombieland screenwriting duo Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick. The two, who most recently penned Zombieland 2 and Michael Bay’s 6 Underground, reportedly met with Disney recently to discuss writing the script. The franchise won’t entirely change hands though, as Jerry Bruckheimer is said to remain on board as producer.

It’s not clear what a reboot may entail though. Will they be wiping the slate clean to start over with all new cast and characters? Will it be another sequel with Johnny Depp’s Jack Sparrow? I really hope it’s not the latter, and would be a bad move for the studio to hire Depp again considering the abuse accusations – can the studio really fire a dude for tweets, but ignore extensive evidence of domestic abuse? However you feel about Depp though, there’s no denying he’s a major liability for studios and if Disney wants a successful reboot, doing one without him is key.

Casting aside, the thing that will make this franchise work again comes down to two words: Gore Verbinski. The director’s first three Pirates movies are great because of their wacky visual style and thrilling sense of imagination. Though I imagine he won’t be back if Disney is looking for something completely new, and a fresh set of eyes could be what the franchise needs. But hey, we’ll always have ghost pirates and that water wheel sword fight.

Gallery – Reboots That Were Also Sequels:


More From KMGWFM