‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ Star in the Lead To Play Iconic ‘Harry Potter’ Villain

in Disney, Television

Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) and Davy Jones (Bill Nighy) speaking in Pirates of the Caribbean

Credit: Disney

Whether anyone wants it or not, the Harry Potter series is being rebooted, and a Pirates of the Caribbean star is reportedly in the lead to play Voldemort.

Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes) grinning in front of a crowd of Death Eaters in Harry Potter
Credit: Warner Bros

Earlier this year, Warner Bros Discovery announced that it was going to remake the beloved Harry Potter movies as an HBO television series, with an ambitious seven-season plan to cover The Sorcerer’s Stone, The Chamber of Secrets, The Prisoner of Azkaban, The Goblet of Fire, The Order of the Phoenix, The Half-Blood Prince, and The Deathly Hallows one at a time.

Recasting ‘Harry Potter’

However, it has been made clear that original series stars Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Rupert Grint would not be returning and certainly not reprising their roles, given their current ages. Other primary figures of the franchise, like Michael Gambon and Alan Rickman, have passed away since the final film premiered in 2011.

Harry Potter sitting with Dumbledore in limbo
Credit: Warner Bros.

Related: A Harry Potter TV Show is Finally Happening, Here’s Everything We Know

That means, in its quest to mine the Harry Potter IP for everything it’s worth, a whole bunch of roles associated with very famous actors would need to be recast.

While Warner Bros has not made any official announcements, there are already some strong speculations as to who the studio might be in discussions with.

The Dark Wizard’s Odds

The United Kingdom has an interesting tradition of turning casting speculation into gambling, with the role of James Bond being famously bet on each time a new actor is cast. It turns out that this phenomenon is not exclusive to 007 and that Bill Nighy, the star of numerous Pirates of the Caribbean movies, is heavily favored to play Harry Potter’s nemesis Tom Riddle, better known as Lord Voldemort.

Bill Nighy as Davy Jones in Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End
Credit: Disney

According to Online Betting Guide, Bill Nighy is in the lead to play Voldemort, currently given three-to-one odds to be cast. Marvel Cinematic Universe star Benedict Cumberbatch (who normally plays a more benevolent wizard) is right behind him at four-to-one, while OG Voldemort Ralph Fiennes trails at five-to-one.

While these are not numbers being thrown out by the studio, it is a pretty strong indication of public belief about who should be cast in Harry Potter roles. Amusingly, Nighy has actually already appeared in the JK Rowling franchise, having portrayed the stern and autocratic Minister of Magic, Rufus Scrimgeour, in Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows: Part 1 (2010).

Bill Nighy scowling as Rufus Scrimgeour in Harry Potter
Credit: Warner Bros

Related: Johnny Depp’s Return as Jack Sparrow in ‘Pirates of the Caribbean 6’ May Save Disney Studios

Bill Nighy and ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’

Bill Nighy appeared in three Pirates of the Caribbean movies as Davy Jones, the vengeful and monstrous captain of the Flying Dutchman and a major enemy of Captain Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp). He is considered one of the most memorable villains of the franchise, and the extensive makeup and CGI work needed to transform Nighy into a semi-aquatic humanoid was widely acclaimed.

Lord Voldemort (Ralph Fiennes) at the table in Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 2
Credit: Warner Bros.

It actually makes us wonder if Bill Nighy is being speculated as the new Voldemort simply because he’s used to playing ghostly pale villains with no noses. The HBO show could definitely do a lot worse.

Who could play the new Voldemort in the Harry Potter reboot? Give us your best guesses below!

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