In Johnny Depp, Disney found an unlikely Mickey messiah. His once-dicey-seeming turn as a scenery-chewing eyeliner junkie was a risk worth taking, it turned out, and it wasn't long before Pirates of the Caribbean's staggering grosses had execs' eyeballs rolling back into their heads, replaced by spinning gold bullion. Resisting the urge to stuff their single biggest revenue generator into a chest and throw away the key until Depp had completed filming on Pirates 4 through 18, the company instead lay out a buffet of properties and encouraged the actor to help himself—and he did, committing to parts like the Mad Hatter in Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland; The Lone Ranger's sidekick Tonto; and, in his biggest stretch to date, the titular transportation device of Jerry Bruckheimer's thrilling Monorail: The Motion Picture. Still, we haven't yet seen the last of Captain Jack Sparrow, a role Depp is reportedly revisiting for a $56 million paycheck. From the Daily Mail:

Hollywood heartthrob Johnny Depp will pick up a staggering $56 million for starring in a fourth Pirates Of The Caribbean film. And it's the highest up-front pay-cheque in showbiz history.

Insiders claim the movie will have Captain Jack searching for the elixir of eternal youth. But it's unlikely that Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley will return to their roles.

If the amount reported by the British tabloid is right, the sum would make Depp the highest paid movie star in Hollywood history. Yes, it's exorbitant, but we have no doubt the malleable thespian will earn every cent, giving audiences $56 million dollars' worth of boozy swashbuckling and sexually ambiguous repartee with his tentacle-faced love interest in the hotly anticipated Pirates of The Caribbean: Song of the Peg-Legged Parrot.