Pirates of the Caribbean 5, sometimes referred to as Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, has found its villain! Javier Bardem is in early talks to square off with Johnny Depp's iconic Capt. Jack Sparrow in this latest Disney adventure.

Christoph Waltz had previously been rumored to play Brand, but it is now Javier Bardem who is the frontrunner for the part. The actor is no stranger to playing villains. He famously portrayed baddies in both Skyfall and No Country for Old Men. Disney currently has no comment. And no further character details have been released.

It's believed that Javier Bardem may have been sold on the idea of starring in a Pirates movie after his wife Penélope Cruz took the lead female role in 2011's Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. He is also said to be intrigued by working with the two directors now at the helm of this sequel.

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Pirates of the Caribbean 5 will be directed by Kon-Tiki duo Joachim Rønning and Espen Sandberg. And it is their gorgeously created visuals in that film, achieved on a low budget, that has perked Javier Bardem's interest most.

Jerry Bruckheimer will be back to produce Pirates of the Caribbean 5, which begins filming this February in Australia. Geoffrey Rush is expected to reprise his role as Captain Barbosa, but that has not been confirmed by the studio. Other returning cast members are said to likely include Ian McShane and Stephen Graham, with cameos from Orlando Bloom and Keith Richards.

Thus far, the Pirates franchise has pulled in $3.7 billion worldwide. This current sequel is a top priority at the studio, which also has six Star Wars movies in development, along with a number of Marvel sequels and spin-offs.

B. Alan Orange at Movieweb
B. Alan Orange