Right from the start, risking hundreds of millions of dollars on a movie about pirates seemed like a crazy venture, but Disney really wanted to take the chance. They knew summer needed blockbusters, and they loved the idea of using one of their rides to create one. They were ambitious but cautious, they had a backup plan. If the movie didn't turn out the way they wanted, they could release the film straight to video. 

After a few script rounds they had a fun but straightforward pirate movie. Jerry Bruckheimer came aboard and brought on writers Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio to work in the supernatural elements in the world. Visionary director in Gore Verbinski to play around in this world. And soon they were in production. 

Check out the video about the creation of this adventure classic from Savage Books, and let's talk after the jump. 

Appreciating Disney's Set Piece and Character Extravaganza, Pirates of the Caribbean

Even with one of the biggest rolls of the dice in cinema history, Disney forged ahead with the first Pirates movie, and they never looked back. The first movie in the series cost around $140 million but made $654,264,015 worldwide. It was an unprecedented hit that launched sequels that upped the budget and mostly matched the success. 

While it's impossible to point your finger at just one thing that made these movies popular, it's easy to see the array of particulars that made the story sing. The casting was perfect, and the characters they were asked to play were so well-drawn. Everyone has individual motivations and they're developed in tandem with the plot, meaning that they all have points in this movie. Elizabeth is wrongfully taken, due to her love of Will. Will is bound by blood and hiding a secret. Jack needs Will's secret to get his ship back, and Barbossa needs it to live. 

Around these characters are some of the most inventive set pieces. We see people fighting in a blacksmith shop, scaling walls, using boats like submarines, and even getting stranded on deserted islands. 

The best part of all of this? The movies kept this up for the sequels. People were fighting on rolling wheels, facing a giant Kraken, and inhabiting boats that became part of them. We saw incredible CGI villains that hold up today, people who had wants and desires that were palpable and delightfully nefarious. Across the next four sequels, the movie constantly had to up the ante. Though none of them are as good as the first (in my opinion), they all capture the heart of the movie and the mission to have swashbuckling fun. 

All of these elements are what convinced Disney to bet on the first film and what continues to convince them to adapt other rides like Jungle Cruise into movies today. While not all of them come out as strong, it set the bar incredibly high, and it made Disney a ton of money.  

Are you a fan of these movies? What were your favorite parts? 

Let us know in the comments. 

Source: Savage Books