The last we saw of Captain Jack Sparrow, he was on a beach with ol’ scallywag Gibbs, reflecting on his decision to deny himself the Fountain of Youth. “Who’s to say I won’t live forever [anyway], eh?,” he says. Indeed. Despite some delays—and a Lone Ranger-sized hiccup—the long-awaited next chapter in the Pirates franchise, following 2011’s On Stranger Tides, has a new official release date: July 7, 2017.
Common sen$e dictated that there needed to be another film, even though the fourth film was hardly the best-regarded of Capt. Jack’s adventures. Still, it grossed more than $1 billion around the world. A fifth film, at one point titled Dead Men Tell No Tales, was initially targeted for a 2015 release, with Kon-Tiki directors Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg taking over for Rob Marshall (who in turn had taken over for Gore Verbinski.) But last summer, shortly after The Lone Ranger had put a $190 million dent in Disney’s bottom line, the project was delayed, due to budgetary concerns and an unfinished script. Now, Disney is recalibrating Sparrow’s course for 2017.