How One Amusement Park Ride Inspired the ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ Franchise

If you can’t get to the Disney theme parks at the moment, binge-watching some of the Pirates of the Caribbean movies might be the next best thing. Turns out, these movies, along with classics like The Haunted Mansion and The Country Bears were inspired by the amusement park rides of the same name. 

In terms of this franchise, though, the movies eventually inspired some of the changes to the ride. Learn more about Pirates of the Caribbean movie and iconic theme park ride here.

The original Pirates of the Caribbean ride inspired the films

The tales of Jack Sparrow, Will Turner, and Elizabeth Swann might seem pretty fantastic, but the idea for this action/adventure franchise actually came from a theme park ride in both Disney World and Disneyland. 

There are a few iconic moments from the Pirates of the Caribbean ride that helped inspire these adventure films. That includes the part where the criminals behind bars are begging for the keys from a dog. In the film, Jack Sparrow does the exact same thing, holding up a bone for the dog. 

According to Screenrant, “The original villainous crew from Curse of the Black Pearl all turned out to be skeletons that were cursed, and that was something that was taken directly from the ride. Many of the characters on the ride are skeletons in the early stages before the live pirates appear.”

'Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End' Display during Disney's 'Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End'
‘Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End’ Display during Disney’s ‘Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End’ | Barry King/WireImage

The ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ films then inspired the theme park ride

With the success of the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, these movies impacted the theme park ride. Now, each ride includes an animatronic version of the Captain of the Black Pearl, Jack Sparrow. In Walt Disney World, fans can also see Captain Barbosa standing on top of a ship.

At the beginning of the Pirates of the Caribbean ride in both Disney World and Disneyland, ride goers are greeted by some of the villains of the franchise. A thin veil of mist forms, projecting the image of Dave Jones and, sometimes, Blackbeard.

Disney continues to make changes to the Pirates of the Caribbean ride, most notably, the “redhead” pirate

There’s always plenty of surprises that pop-up during the Pirates of the Caribbean ride. If you’re lucky, you’ll even catch Johnny Depp acting as Captain Jack Sparrow. Aside from live actor appearances, Disney continues to improve a number of its rides, and Pirates is no different. 

Most recently, there was a female character nicknamed “Redd,” auctioned off by the pirates, while the characters shouted, “we wants the redhead.” Instead of removing the redhead, Disney gave her a more empowered (and important) role in the ride. Now Redd is a pirate herself, taking on the role of the auctioneer, as she seeks to profit off the goods she’s plundered. 

The Pirates of the Caribbean movies are available for streaming on Disney’s service. To learn more about Disney+ and to subscribe, visit their website

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