While 2017 will see more female villains thanks to films like The Fate of the Furious and Thor: Ragnarok, there won’t be one in Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales. However, Terry Rossio, the screenwriter responsible for every other Pirates of the Caribbean, has revealed that wasn’t always the case, and that series star Johnny Depp vetoed the idea of having a female villain in the movie.
“My version of Dead Men Tell No Tales was set aside because it featured a female villain, and Johnny Depp was worried that would be redundant to Dark Shadows, which also featured a female villain,” Rossio wrote on his blog.
“Of course there is also the possibility that all those screenplays simply sucked,” Rossio continued. “But usually when I go back to read a screenplay that wasn’t produced, it holds up, often better than the film that was eventually produced. Sometimes it just takes a single decision by a single person, often just a whim, to destroy years of story creation and world-building.”
The final version of the film comes from Tower Heist and Catch Me If You Can writer Jeff Nathanson. In his iteration, Skyfall‘s Javier Bardem stars as Captain Armando Salazar, the film’s villain.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales is in theaters May 26. The film is a production of Walt Disney Pictures directed by Joachim Ronning and Espen Sandberg and stars Johnny Depp as Captain Jack Sparrow, Javier Bardem as Captain Armando Salazar, Brenton Thwaites as Henry Turner, Kaya Scodelario as Carina Smyth, Kevin McNally as Joshamee Gibbs and Geoffrey Rush as Captain Hector Barbossa.