Superstar Johnny Depp has been dropped from the Pirates of the Caribbean film franchise as Disney Studios plans a major reboot, DailyMailTV can reveal.
Depp was the major lead in five Pirates movies over the past 15 years - but it appears Captain Jack Sparrow has made his final voyage on the Black Pearl.
Original Pirates script writer Stuart Beattie is the first to publicly confirm that Disney Studios appears to be ditching the star as they rework the entire franchise, reports Daily Mail.
Depp, 55, who has been dogged by personal dramas over the past four years, saw his last outing as Sparrow in Dead Men Tell No Tales, which became the lowest performing movie of the films.
Speaking exclusively to DailyMailTV at a red carpet event in Hollywood, Beattie confirmed on camera the reboot means Depp is out as Sparrow.
Nodding when it was suggested Depp was out, he said: "I think he's had a great run. Obviously, he's made that character his own and it's become the character he's most famous for now.
"And kids all over the world love him as that character so I think it's been great for him, it's been great for us, so I'm just very, very happy about it."
Beattie feels no matter what Depp does next in his career, his Hollywood career high point will be defined by Sparrow and amassing more than $4 billion from the movies.
The star, known for cult hits like Edward Scissorhands, was not expected to be a success with the release of The Curse of the Black Pearl in 2003.
Beattie added: "I think Jack Sparrow will be his legacy. It's the only character he's played five times, it's the character he dresses up in to visit children in hospitals, it's what he'll be remembered for.
"Before Jack Sparrow came along, [Depp] was considered this kind of quirky, independent actor that made these really cool little Tim Burton films, but he was by no means a movie star and a lot of people thought we were crazy for casting him at the time.
"Because he wasn't a proven commodity; you know, a big movie star. And we were making a big movie and we were putting this quirky, independent actor in the middle of it and people thought we were crazy. The fact that it worked is a miracle.
"They were certainly nervous watching the rushes everyday but when it all came together, something just clicked and it was magic and connected with audiences. I'm proud to be a part of it."
Beaming with pride, Beattie added that his first film was nominated both for best film and Depp was leading actor at the Oscars.
He said: "For a big, commercial popcorn movie to get a Oscar nomination, for the actor, is incredible. So that was a lot of fun seeing that."
Recent reports claimed Deadpool's writing team was working on the reboot and Beattie confirmed that Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick are indeed working on script drafts.
The pair penned the first two Deadpool blockbusters, Zombieland and 6 Underground, the action film,
Beattie reacted: "Hopefully they'll bring a lot of the great comedic subversiveness. I was laughing out of my seat in the opening credits of Deadpool so I am a big fan of those guys and I hope they do something really special."
Even though Beattie carved the characters for the films, Disney have not yet asked him to return: "That would be great. I would love to. I mean, I love that world and love the people that make those films so yeah, I would love to be involved."
But he will not be upset if the call doesn't come: "There's that saying, don't frown because it's over, smile because it happened.
"And the fact that they're rebooting something that you did, means that you did something that is worth rebooting. So I tend to look at it as the glass half full and it's an honor to be rebooted."
Beattie revealed that the initial movie took 10 years to get made by Disney.
"Firstly, it's extraordinarily validating to know I wasn't crazy; that there were people that wanted to see a pirate movie like I did. So that was fun.
"And look, it's just great to see there are Jack Sparrow costumes at Halloween now and it's great to know that you've created something that's become a part of the culture. It so rarely happens and I just feel very honored and blessed by it."
Smiling he added that he hopes the reboot will hit the screens faster than his original idea in 1993.
His next project is likely to create huge news too.
"We just finished filming Danger Close, the Battle of Long Tan. So it's the true story of the biggest battle the Australian's fought in the Vietnam war.
"So it's a very big Australian independent film; a war film. And just beautiful performances, it's an incredible story, and that will be out sometime next year."
The BAFTA winning screenwriter spoke at the Seventh Annual Australians in Film Awards (AiF) in Los Angeles.
Presented by the non-profit organization, Australians in Film, the annual star-studded Awards Show and Benefit Gala Dinner celebrates the achievements of Australian entertainment professionals and supports the foundation's mission to usher Australian filmmakers into the international market.