Austin Butler Reacts to Rumors He's Joining the 'Pirates of the Caribbean' Reboot (Exclusive)

Will Austin Butler star in a new 'Pirates of the Caribbean' film? Here's what he had to say.

Austin Butler is open to sailing the seas in a new Pirates of the Caribbean film. 

Sitting down with ET's Nischelle Turner to promote his new film, The Bikeriders, the 32-year-old actor -- who is not on social media -- responded to recent online rumors suggesting that he would star in a reboot of the massively popular franchise for Disney. Whispers began online in mid-May when The DisInsider reported that after years of wanting to work with Butler -- even potentially considering him for the live-action Hercules -- Disney wants him for Pirates of the Caribbean.

Butler -- talking alongside his Bikeriders co-star and on-screen love interest, Jodie Comer -- said that while he is not in the know of such speculation, it's not out of the question. "Oh really, I haven't heard about that," he told ET, adding, "I loved Pirates of the Caribbean." 

For the Dune: Part 2 lead, if the online rumors came to fruition, it would be a full-circle moment for him. Butler shared that the Pirates of the Caribbean movies were some of the earliest films he remembers loving and looking up to in his pre-teen years. 

"That just reminded me of when I was a kid," he said. "In elementary school, we had to make these posters that had like your favorite music, your favorite actors. And at that time – I don't know what grade, it must have been fourth grade, third grade or something – but it was -- Pirates of the Caribbean was on there.”

"That's huge," responded Comer, 31.

Because of how much it means to him, however, Butler said he is slightly hesitant at the idea of joining -- or shall we say boarding -- a new Pirates film.

"It's a hard one to touch because they did it so well," Butler continued. "I loved what Johnny [Depp] did with that."

The last of the original Pirates of the Caribbean films, Dead Men Tell No Tales, was released in theaters in 2017 and starred Johnny DeppJavier Bardem and The Gentlemen actress Kaya Scodelario. Earlier franchise films also starred Orlando Bloom and Keira Knightley, who opted out of the last film.

In March, producer Jerry Bruckheimer confirmed to that he and Disney are in the process of making a new Pirates of the Caribbean film and that the intention is to create a completely original reboot, sans the cast members who popularized the films. 

"[...] We're gonna reboot Pirates, so that is easier to put together because you don't have to wait for certain actors," Bruckheimer, 80, said while also discussing plans for a third Top Gun film, which he said requires coordinated schedules for Tom CruiseMiles TellerGlen Powell and more stars. 

Should the rumors about Disney wanting Butler for a rebooted Pirates be true, they will have to get in line as the Elvis actor and Oscar nominee has become one of the most sought-after stars in Hollywood these days. 

After dropping AppleTV+'s Masters of the Air earlier this year (and receiving Emmy buzz for his role in the show) and then jumping immediately into promotion for Dune 2, Butler quickly switched directions to advertising The Bikeriders, which initially premiered in 2023 at the Telluride Film Festival. 

The movie follows Comer's character, Kathy, who falls for Benny (Butler) after a chance encounter at a Midwest bar in the 1960s. Things are complicated by Benny's commitment to his newly-joined motorcycle club, The Vandals, led by Johnny (Tom Hardy). "Much like the country around it, the club begins to evolve, transforming from a gathering place for local outsiders into a dangerous underworld of violence, forcing Benny to choose between Kathy and his loyalty to the club," a description of the film reads. 

Written and directed by Jeff Nichols, the director of Mud and Loving, the project also stars Nichols' frequent collaborator Michael Shannon, as well as Challengers and West Side Story star Mike Faist and The Walking Dead's Norman Reedus

The movie was a natural project for Butler, who said he grew up around bikes with his dad, a motorcycle enthusiast. Butler said that while he still rides, unlike his character, he would prefer to not have someone behind him while he's out on the road. 

"In everyday life, I don't want to put anyone else's life at risk," Butler said, laughing. 

For her own part, Comer -- a BAFTA, Emmy, Tony and Olivier Award winner -- said that she would prefer to be behind another person -- much like her character in the movie. 

"Everyone's like, 'Were you jealous at any point [of getting to ride]?' and I'm like, 'No, I'm quite content being on the back of that thing and kind of taking in the moment," the Killing Eve actress joked. 

Watch the trailer for The Bikeriders in the player below: 

The Bikeriders speeds into theaters nationwide on June 21.