By Evy Baehr, Associate Editor 

This is it, the first really big movie of the summer, PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN: ON STRANGER TIDES. In the past

three movies, pirates have

been fighting each other, the government, and the aristocracy. As each adventure unfolds, we’ve mostly enjoyed the ride.


This time, however, there are a few changes, new characters, new plots, and a whole new big adventure!

The pirates are now looking for the Fountain of Youth, which interestingly enough reminds me of eternal life in heaven. With the new movie’s new, positive comments about Christian faith, forgiveness and the supernatural, MOVIEGUIDE® has taken a special interest in the messages being put out by the makers of ON STRANGER TIDES. So, without further ado, let’s take a look at some thoughts from the cast and crew of PIRATES OF THE CARIBBEAN 4, starting with star Johnny Depp.


Q: How does it feel to be in the Disneyland ride?

“It’s pretty psychedelic. The idea of wandering through this ride and suddenly there you are on it three times. It’s a great honor. Something you took part in creating becomes this forever object.”

Q: You used to say none of my movies will make any money. Do you feel guilty now?

“It’s not my fault, I did my best, you know, even to the point of trying to get fired on the first one.”

Q: About your character:

“A character like Captain Jack you feel like you could just continue, you know. The possibilities are endless, limitless. There’s any possibility of madness and absurdity that could commence. Basically, I can’t shake him.”

Q: You’ve lived like a superstar that all men dream of, what dreams do you have now that you are a family man and have made it?

“Smooth sailing. I’m okay with no big ups, no big downs, full steam ahead. As a family man, all you want as a dad is pure happiness for your kids. That’s a universal, sort of parent thing. That’s it, that’s my dream, happy kids.”


What was the key thing to creating your character?

“We didn’t go into the studio until after they shot for a few months. To try to imagine what the pirate world is like during that time, because it is so far from our reality – to create a character like that – is all about using your imagination.”


Can you talk about working with the cast?

“I am so blessed to work with this extraordinary cast. Sam as Philip in this movie, I’ve never seen anything like [him] in my life.”

And about Johnny Depp:

“He’s able to watch something and then pick it up and do it within seconds. He’s Fred Astaire, he’s this genius dancer, and he says he can’t dance but he can.”


What was the idea behind the movie?

“Screenplays are the hardest thing to try to get right. They look so simple when they work, but they really destroy your brain cells trying to get them there, so we took our time, we did it right. Johnny was really instrumental in working on the script process with us and actually created Sam’s character [the positive Christian missionary in the movie].”

What were some of the things you wanted to address to make a change from the last two for being too confusing?

“Two and three got bashed a little bit, but you have to understand two was the biggest of the bunch, it was an enormous success, three reached almost a billion dollars, so they were enormously successful movies, even though the media didn’t understand them as much as the audience did, [but] that’s who we make movies for. So, I think one of the things we try to address, and we really do not have to address because we started fresh, we finished our trilogy and paid off all our characters, so it makes it much easier to not have as long a movie because we have less characters and less plot lines to deal with each character. . . . This is something Rob [Marshall, the director on No. 4] accomplished very well, by making the film shorter and not quit as complicated. Less characters to deal with.”


Q: This is your fourth time around, what is it about this particular script that takes your character forward?

“We must keep Barbossa/Sparow as an old married couple, constantly bickering. Because it goes back to the first film [CURSE OF THE BLACK PEARL], where the ownership of the Black Pearl [the ship in the first movie] is a part of that conflict. . . . It’s only on this film we started to talk about the Black Pearl. It was a kinda shared girlfriend, [so] we’ve made that plot line a little more interesting rather then just talking about a boat.”


“I think their relationship [between the mermaid and the Christian missionary] symbolizes something great and powerful. Two cultures meet and try to trust the other one. . . .”


“I didn’t miss the swearing [in his role on DEADWOOD for HBO). This is a Disney movie; this isn’t HBO.”

Quality: - Content: +3
Quality: - Content: +1