Johnny Depp ‘blocked from Pirates of the Caribbean return by Disney’

Actor Johnny Depp has reportedly been blocked from making a return to the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise as Captain Jack Sparrow by Disney.

The 57-year-old lost his libel case against News Group Newspapers earlier this year, after The Sun published an article in 2018 which referred to him as a "wife beater" due to his ex-wife Amber Heard's abuse allegations, which he strongly denies.

But, according to reports, Disney distanced itself from Depp even before he lost his case.

The famous brand reportedly "balked" at the film's executive producer Jerry Bruckheimer's suggestion of bringing Depp back for a cameo in the new spin-off, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The Hollywood star played Captain Jack Sparrow in all five of the Pirates of the Caribbean films released so far, between 2006 and 2017.

The new imagining is thought to be led by Harley Quinn actress Margot Robbie.

And Disney are reported to have believed that Depp making a cameo could damage their family friendly image.

In November, Depp announced he had stepped away from the Fantastic Beasts films after being asked to step away.

He shared a statement on Instagram which read: "I wish to let you know that I have been asked to resign by Warner Bros from my role as Grindelwald in Fantastic Beasts and I have respected and agreed to that request."

Fans of the actor soon demanded he be reinstated, with thousands signing a Change.org petition to ask Warner Bros to bring him back as the magical villain.

And people have been campaigning to get him back in the upcoming Pirates of the Caribbean film too.

More than 350,000 people signed a petition asking for him to return as Captain Jack Sparrow.

It read: "They have to bring him back to rule the seas again or we will never watch any Pirates of the Caribbean movie without our Captain."

Back in November, Mr Justice Nicol ruled that The Sun had proved what they had published was "substantially true" to the civil standard.

The judge concluded that 12 of the 14 alleged incidents of violence against Amber Heard, which News Group Newspapers had relied on in their defence, did happen.

However Depp announced his plans to appeal with the Court of Appeal.

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