What is the viral Jack Sparrow run on TikTok? Trend explained as fans mimic Johnny Depp’s famous sprint

Jack Sparrow run challenge goes viral on TikTok (Image via Disney)
Jack Sparrow run challenge goes viral on TikTok (Image via Disney)

Fans of Johnny Depp have been recreating his iconic Pirates of the Caribbean character Captain Jack Sparrow's run in a new social media trend. The challenge went viral on TikTok even though it has been five years since Depp last portrayed the Disney character.

The sudden revival of the Captain's comical sprint can be largely attributed to the ongoing Johnny Depp-Amber Heard defamation trial, which has sparked a barrage of memes on the internet. The 'Jack Sparrow run trend' seems to be yet another form of showing overwhelming support for Depp during the televised hearing.

Jack Sparrow run challenge takes TikTok by storm


Any fan of the five-film Pirates of the Caribbean franchise would be familiar with Captain Jack Sparrow's run, which seems to defy all commonly laid down expectations for running.

The Captain's running style could be more befittingly defined as a form of prancing, with his arms flailing wide by his side. The run doesn't seem to be as inimitable as originally pegged, since thousands of netizens trying to recreate it have succeeded to some extent. However, there have been many who failed miserably.

Videos of users attempting the challenge have been populating the platform since the beginning of May. All the TikToks are set to the signature theme music of the film.

A search for 'Jack Sparrow run' pulls up a whopping 151,000 videos, and the hashtag #jacksparrowrun has over 50.2 million views, as of this writing.

Some of the top creators who have participated in the viral TikTok trend include Stephanie B (@stephaniebooty), Kris HC (@kallmekris), Matt Scharff (@mattscharf), Alex Warren (@alexwaarren), @jazmine0107, and @aileenchristineee. Their videos have garnered millions of views, with Stephanie and Kris' videos crossing the 10 million views milestone (16.3 million and 13.7 million, respectively).

In fact, one creator @joggingjacksparrow built his whole account around the character's idiosyncrasies, including his run and his penchant for rum. To add to the authenticity, he dons an impressive Captain Jack Sparrow cosplay for each video.

Johnny Depp explains the iconic Jack Sparrow run

While many speculated that the reason behind the Captain's peculiar run was his rum intake, Johnny Depp debunked this theory in an interview with Collider. He explained:

"In terms of his body language, I felt that when he was on the ship he would be fine as the ship would be bounding away. He would have sea legs, but when he gets on land he cannot get land legs. He would be looking wobbly."

Depp has always prided himself on building much of the Captain's unforgettable personality on his own, much to the chagrin of Disney executives. He recalled:

"The executives made some comments at film tests for hair make-up and wardrobe when I presented the character. They were like, 'What’s he doing?' Then I got phone calls: 'You’ve got to lose the dangly things and what’s that sore on your face?' 'What’s going on? Is he mentally just gone, left the building a long time ago, or is he just incredibly drunk or is he gay?' So my response was, 'Sorry, don't you know that all my characters are gay?'"

Depp claimed that he "believed in the character wholeheartedly" and felt like he "was onto something." The executives' disapproval did not stop Depp from innovating, but perhaps it was for the better since Depp's antics were what breathed life into his character.

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Edited by Mohini Banerjee