Verbinski Drops Pirates 4 to Focus on BioShock

Gore Verbinski is a man saddled with a full plate. In addition to currently working on the animated Rango with Johnny Depp, the director has Pirates of the Caribbean 4 and BioShock lined up next.

With two big effects-laden projects looming that Universal and Disney want in theaters sooner rather than later something had to give. That something turns out to be the Black Pearl’s plank.

According to Variety, Gore has formally notified Disney and Bruckheimer that he will not helm Pirates of the Caribbean 4. This development could put a big dent in the film’s anticipated 2010 arrival with pre-production reportedly already underway.

“I had a fantastic time bringing ‘Pirates’ to life, and I am eternally grateful to Jerry, Johnny and the rest of the creative and production team,” Verbinski said. “I’m looking forward to all of us crossing paths again in the future.”

Like the rest of us, Gore has probably seen enough of Captain Jack Sparrow and wants to focus instead on the edgier and probably more challenging to pull off BioShock project. If done correctly, BioShock has the potential to turn into a huge mysterious Lost-like franchise.

As for Pirates 4, does it really matter who calls the shots on set? I’d reckon Depp can do Sparrow in his sleep by now. Toss in some CGI beasties and all is well.

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