EXCLUSIVE: Rob Marshall Is ‘Officially’ Talking To Johnny Depp About ‘Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides’

We spoke to “Nine” director Rob Marshall a couple of times towards the end of last year. He’ll be the one helming “Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides,” which everyone has questions about. Will it be a 3-D release? Where will the story pick up? Will stars Orlando Bloom or Keira Knightley return? How about Johnny Depp?

That last question seems to be the most prevalent one in the minds of fans. Fortunately, MTV’s Josh Horowitz spoke to Marshall on the Golden Globe Awards red carpet and he got some of the first definitive answers on the subject of Depp and the fourth “Pirates” movie.

“We’ve now started, officially,” he revealed. “I’m talking to Johnny and it’s been great. I’ve been working already. I’m spending a lot of time with [producer] Jerry Bruckheimer. Learning this whole adventure of this… different genre for me, which I feel so at home [with] already.”

The genre question is a big one. Marshall is best known for his work on the musicals “Nine” and “Chicago,” and on the adaptation “Memoirs of a Geisha.” The swashbuckling action of “Pirates of the Caribbean” represents a dramatic shift in tone for him. So we wonder he he’ll make this next “Pirates” movie his own.

“I never quite think of myself in terms of putting a stamp on anything. I think we’re just trying to bring what’s on the page to life, to make the actors as great as they can be, serve them, serve the material.”

How might this new director benefit the series, help it grow? What do you think the dangers are, if any, of bringing in such a dramatically different creative talent to oversee the story’s telling?