The Australian federal government has agreed to provide US$20.2 million of financial incentives in order to attract Disney's "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales" to film in the country. Federal arts minister George Brandis announced the agreement a few hours ago.
Disney had previously reached an agreement for funding on David Fincher's "20,000 Leagues Under The Sea" but that project was shelved. There were reports not long ago that the studio was trying to revive the agreement and extend it to cover a fifth 'Pirates' as well.
Now it has been confirmed that plans to film 'Leagues' in Australia are out, and this isn't so much a new agreement as a transfer of the old one to cover the fifth 'Pirates' instead.
In a statement, Brandis says: "The government is pleased to agree to Disney’s request to enable earlier funding to be repurposed for the production of 'Pirates of the Caribbean 5'. Any decision to film productions in Australia (such as ‘20,000 Leagues Under the Sea’ or ‘Pirates of the Caribbean 5’) is a commercial matter for Disney."
Disney sought to have the funding promise re-allocated to the new film and topped up to a figure equal to 30% of its Australian budget. With the next 'Pirates' tipped to cost around $200 million or more, it's still short and it's expected the studio will go to individual state governments to make up the difference.
The studio isn't quite locked yet, as is said to be considering alternative locations including Mexico. Whatever the case, production is expected to begin in early 2015 for a release in 2017.