Who is Sean Bailey? Johnny Depp opens up on being dropped from Pirates of the Caribbean days after Amber Heard's op-ed

Johnny Depp in the film franchise (Image via The Walt Disney Company)
Johnny Depp in the film franchise (Image via The Walt Disney Company)

On Monday, April 25, Johnny Depp had to continue his deposition by Amber Heard’s lawyer J. Benjamin Rottenborn. During his cross-examination by Rottenborn, Depp was asked about his accounts of him being dropped from the sixth installment of Disney’s Pirates of the Caribbean series.

Amber Heard’s attorney argued that Johnny Depp was let go from the role of Jack Sparrow even before the actress’ 2018 op-ed in the Washington Post. However, Depp countered that Heard’s accusations of assault at the time of their divorce were in circulation in the media for two years.

In his deposition, Depp said:

“Two years had gone by of constant worldwide talk about me being this wife beater. So I’m sure that Disney was trying to cut ties to be safe. The #MeToo movement was in full swing at that point.”

Following Amber Heard’s op-ed, Pirates of the Caribbean production chief Sean Bailey announced the departure of Johnny Depp from the lead role in the franchise.

What is known about Sean Bailey? Exploring his connection with Johnny Depp


Sean Bailey is a Hollywood producer and writer who has been the president of the production at Walt Disney Studios Motion Picture Production since 2010. At the time of Depp’s controversy with Amber Heard’s allegations against him, Bailey addressed letting go of the actor from the Pirates of the Caribbean series.

In December 2018, months after Heard’s controversial op-ed, Sean Bailey told The Hollywood Reporter:

“We want to bring in a new energy and vitality. I love the [Pirates] movies, but part of the reason (writers) Paul (Wernick) and Rhett (Reese) are so interesting is that we want to give it a kick in the pants. And that’s what I’ve tasked them with.”

Bailey previously worked with ABC on a production deal as the chairman and board member of LivePlanet, which he co-founded. However, after LivePlanet was dissolved, the producer began working for Disney and formed Ideology Inc production, which produced the 2010 sequel to 1982’s Tron, titled Tron: Legacy.

@LawCrimeNetwork (On his conversation with Sean Bailey, a Disney executive) Depp: I have always re-written my characters words and jokes and situational comedy ... Mr. Bailey was very complementary of some of the things I had done.#JohnnyDepp #AmberHeard @LawCrimeNetwork

After joining Disney in 2010, Sean Bailey produced multiple hit films like Alice in Wonderland (2010), Maleficent (2014), Cinderella (2015), The Jungle Book (2016), Beauty and the Beast (2017), Aladdin (2019), The Lion King (2019), and more. As a producer, Bailey has received three Emmy Awards for his contributions in 2001’s Project Greenlight.

While it is not clear if the 51-year-old had served as a producer in the fourth and fifth installments of the Pirates of the Caribbean series, Bailey still was a very crucial figure in the production.

Sean Bailey may have been one of the figures at Disney who decided to drop Johnny Depp from the future Pirates of the Caribbean movies.

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Edited by Sijo Samuel Paul
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