Total Film’s tour of the set is conducted by the ideal guide – the guy who designed it all. John Myhre was brought in by Marshall after working with him (and Cruz) on tepid musical Nine.
He’s joyfully indiscreet about plot details… “It all starts in the big city,” gushes Myhre. “With Jack being captured by King George.
"He’s brought into the castle and, of course, escapes from a situation where he couldn’t possibly escape.
"We see him running through the streets of London and there’s a big centrepiece carriage chase. And Jack is leaping from carriage to carriage.
"This is a big, busy movie. We have around 100 different sets and locations. We haven’t been bored!”
We trail Myhre into the artfully distressed interior of the ale-house where Captain Jack first encounters Angelica (“He has a close encounter with her cleavage”).
Withered candles, tank-sized tankards, creaking teak floors smeared with crust and dust...
“Jack’s entrance is terrific. We see the door open and a shadow cast – the unmistakable sword and dreadlocks.”
Myhre herds us into the main soundstage housing Blackbeard’s ship, a sinister frigate garlanded with gilded spine bones.
The morbid decor extends to the interiors – skeletal chandeliers, pelvic chairs, humeral hand-rails. Myhre chuckles with pride.
Further through the soundstage, a hangar-sized hall is monopolised by a motion-controlled gimbal rig, a fully dressed room that can be tilted and pivoted to 15 degrees.
“That doesn’t sound like much, but when you’re running around, trying to act and remember your fight moves, it’s a lot.”