Back in 2012, Javier Bardem used his special brand of terrifying charisma to benefit a franchise when he starred alongside Daniel Craig in the Sam Mendes James Bond film Skyfall. His presence having enhanced that movie to an extreme degree, now another major Hollywood series is looking to bring him on board as a villain.
The Hollywood Reporter has gotten word that the Academy Award-winning actor is now in negotiations to play the central antagonist in Disney's upcoming Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales. Should he sign on, he would be joining a cast that only contains regulars so far: Johnny Depp is coming back to once again play the infamous Captain Jack Sparrow, and Geofrey Rush will be reprising his role as the dread pirate Barbossa.
Not much is known about the script for Pirates of the Caribbean 5, but this new casting report delivers a good amount of broad details hinting at where the story is going. Should he sign on, Bardem will reportedly be playing a ghost who has a vendetta against Captain Sparrow. Apparently the pirate was directly responsible for the death of Bardem's character's brother, and he wants revenge as a result. In order to accomplish this mission, he needs a "supernatural object to aid him" - which will likely be the MacGuffin that winds up driving the plot. There will also be a romantic interest introduced for Captain Jack. THR simply describes her as "a woman who is accused of being a witch." That role has not yet been cast, but we can probably assume that the production is actively looking for an actress to take the part.
It's funny that Bardem might end up in a Pirates of the Caribbean sequel given his relationship to the leading lady in the last movie. Bardem is married to Penelope Cruz, who you may remember played Angelica Teach in Rob Marshall's Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. Perhaps she enjoyed her time in the franchise enough to recommend it to her husband?
Bardem has a tendency of being very selective about the parts he chooses, and we actually haven't seen him in theaters since Ridley Scott's 2013 film The Counselor. He most recently finished working on director Pierre Morel's upcoming action thriller The Gunman, which co-stars Sean Penn and Idris Elba. He is also starring in Penn's next directorial effort, The Last Face, which will also feature Charlize Theron.
Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales, which will be directed by Joachim Ronnin and Espen Sandbreg, is currently planning a five-month shoot that will take place in Australia next year. Once production is completed, Disney and the filmmakers will get the film prepared for release on July 7, 2017.