Pirates of the Caribbean star says Johnny should be allowed to play Jack Sparrow again

Johnny Depp's Pirates of the Caribbean co-star Kevin McNally has backed his return to the franchise despite Depp's legal trouble.

McNally, 68, said he had "never seen a hint of any dark side to Johnny" during his interview with Express.

Depp, 58, has led all five Pirates of the Caribbean movies as the iconic Captain Jack Sparrow.

But his high-profile split from ex-wife Amber Heard and failure to sue The Sun newspaper - who branded him a 'wife-beater' - has left him boycotted by most of Hollywood.

Credit: MPG / Alamy
This includes Pirates of the Caribbean studio Disney, who last year announced they'd be taking the billion-dollar franchise in a new direction, with Margot Robbie stepping into the captain's boots., per Hollywood Reporter.

Nevertheless, McNally - who has played Depp's first-mate Mr Gibbs in all five movies - continues to back his return to the franchise.

"I think there was a general feeling that without Jack there is no Pirates franchise. And there's probably a lot of truth in that," he told Express while promoting his new movie Decrypted.

McNally went on to talk about the different ways Depp could be included in the franchise without taking a starring role.

"You can easily think of stories in which somebody is looking for Jack and come to Mr Gibbs and say, 'How would I find Jack?' And so have a whole bunch of people on a trek to find the legendary Jack Sparrow," he added.

Kevin McNally in a scene from the Robert the Bruce (2020) Credit: LANDMARK MEDIA / Alamy
McNally isn't the only one hoping that Depp will sail again in the new Pirates movie. A fan petition campaigning for his return to the high seas has amassed over 650,000 signatures.

As well as being dropped from Pirates of the Caribbean, Depp was also asked to resign from his role in Fantastic Beasts, where he will be replaced by Mads Mikkelsen.

The actor, who also starred as Willy Wonka in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, spoke out against cancel culture at the San Sebastian film festival earlier this year. He told Deadline: "It's so far out of hand now that I can promise you that no-one is safe."

Originally inspired by Disney's long-running ride, Pirates of the Caribbean is one of the most lucrative film franchises of all time. In total, the five films have grossed over $4.5 billion. But the most recent installment - 2017's Dead Men Tell No Tales - saw a significant drop-off, with the second-lowest box-office performance of the franchise.

Margot Robbie at The Suicide Squad Premiere. Credit Hollywood News Wire Inc. / Alamy
Disney is hoping to blow new wind into the series' sails with a female-fronted reboot, which will see Robbie reteam with Birds of Prey writer Christina Hodson, Hollywood Reporter reports.

Even if Disney don't reverse their decision to keep Depp out of future Pirates films, fans could still look forwards to seeing the actor reprise his iconic role elsewhere.

He spoke recently about how he'd love to play Jack Sparrow again, saying: "I'll go to somebody's house, man, I'll perform at your kid's birthday party at this point."

Featured Image Credit: MPG / Alamy

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