Pirates of the Caribbean Co-Star Vince Lozano Reflects on 20 Years of the Iconic Disney Franchise


Playing a part in any Disney related film or movie is very much a dream come true for many actors. The instantaneous legacy, name recognition, and fan familiarity are all aspects that could very much cement a career in Hollywood. An actor is part of history when that happens, and it’s even more historically apparent if one was lucky enough to be in the introductory entry of a certain groundbreaking buccaneer film series, as actor Vince Lozano was in 2003’s Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl.

Stepping into the shoes of Jacoby, one of the more highlighted cursed pirates in Captain Hector Barbossa’s crew, Lozano’s character faced off against Orlando Bloom’s Will Turner not once, not twice, but three times. Starring in both big screen and small screen features for over 30 years, MovieWeb recently had a quick chat with the experienced actor about what it was like being on the ground floor of a movie series that quickly turned into an exciting worldwide phenomenon.

Pirates of the Caribbean Turns 20

Barbossa standing with his crew on the Black Pearl
Buena Vista Pictures

While there were four sequels released after 2003’s The Black Pearl (and two more rumored to be on the way) and other projects in the franchise released in other mediums (such as novels, video games, comic books, and toys), Lozano does admit that, while on set, he didn’t think a story about pirates would have longevity.

This all changed though when he saw the publicly released sneak preview for the first time with some other members of the cast. “We were having a party, a superbowl party, and they showed the trailer for the first time,” said Lozano. “We all looked at each other and went, ‘Wow, this is going to be a mega, mega, mega hit,’ we were all stunned.” He also mentioned how the surprise of seeing his character being the payoff at the end of the teaser made him even more hyped to see the movie when it was released:

The other thing — I ended up being the punchline in the trailer, so I was the last thing you saw — I was so excited and so thrilled.

As the initial question grazed over the other entries in the series, such as Dead Man’s Chest and At World’s End, there was a certain charm that the first movie brought to the stage that the other ones didn’t have in Lozano’s opinion as well. “They had one script, and they ended up splitting that into two for a second and third film.”

Being Part of a Pirate Crew

Captain Jack Sparrow and Will Turner on a ship
Buena Vista Pictures

As we are now 20 years away from the original cinematic introduction to Jack Sparrow, Will Turner, and Elizabeth Swann, Lozano also discussed his most memorable experiences from working on the movie. Well, not before he talked about his least favorite part, “Sitting in makeup for two and a half hours with them putting a rash on my face. That — that wasn’t a lot of fun,” said Lozano.

Thinking back to 2003, he can’t help but mention the friendships he made and some fond moments throughout production:

“Hanging out with [other] pirates, telling stories, building some camaraderie, making jokes on each other of course. Hanging out with Geoffrey Rush, talking about acting, life; same thing with Johnny Depp. Asking him, ‘How did you come up with this character? ‘He would tell me stories about how he did it, jumping into a pool, coming out cold and thinking about how British musician Keith Richards moved his body. Johnny is one of the best people you’ll ever meet.”

Being around the main cast, Lozano also notes how Orlando Bloom was already an excellent sword fighter and Knightley came to set not only with her family but her little dog, “Watching her at 17, [thinking] man, she is going to be a huge star.”

Related: Pirates of the Caribbean: A Look Back at the Black Pearl, 20 Years Later

Turning Vince Lozano Into a Skeleton

Cursed Jack Sparrow
Buena Vista Pictures

A visual treat that lies within Pirates of the Caribbean is when Captain Barbossa and his crew reveal their cursed forms under the moonlight to Keira Knightley’s character, Elizabeth Swann, in one epic scene that helps make this Disney movie stand out among the rest. Having become one of these bare-boned entities, Lozano spoke about what the process was like in transforming his actual self into a hollow and terrifying skeleton:

“Basically, I had to go in and get a full body scan. We would film the scenes and then come off set. Somebody from CGI would go in with a ball camera and in a circular motion, reshoot the whole thing and piece it together later on. All that was shot in the Spruce Goose in Long Beach, they built the [Black Pearl] in there too.”

The conversation then approached Lozano’s opinion on Disney’s openness to bring Depp back now since his legal disputes are behind him. “I think he deserves another shot as Jack, but I don’t think it’s going to happen, I’m hearing a lot of stories out there. The audience is there though. I do a lot of pirate conventions and there’s such a big subculture of people that dress up like pirates, and they love Johnny.” He thinks that the House of Mouse will bring in a different pirate, and it unfortunately won’t be Jack Sparrow.

Related: Pirates of the Caribbean: 15 Iconic Jack Sparrow Quotes

Balancing Pirate Treasure and People Problems

Trauma Therapy Psychosis
Hex Media

In contrast to the fantastical and swashbuckling adventure of Pirates of the Caribbean, Lozano’s latest film (and Tom Sizemore’s last film), Trauma Therapy: Psychosis, centers around a group of individuals who are invited to go on an enlightening retreat, only to discover that the self-help guru’s trials are psychologically dark and horrifying. The movie very much gets in the audience’s head when it comes to intensity and disturbing visuals; Lozano said it provides a more realistic spin on mental health:

“That’s what the recruits are trying to do [in this movie], they’re trying to improve themselves in life, right? They’re seeking help. I think that’s the problem as human beings. Even though Trauma Therapy is an intense, psychological, in your face film — I think, if you need help, seek it. It’s not a sign of weakness to get help. It’s a sign of strength.”

Either being cast in a Disney movie where he plays a chaotic and care-free pirate looking to cause mischief anywhere he can or playing the role of somebody who has experienced being putty in the hands of a crazed and delusional ‘life expert,’ it seems like Frank Lozano has not let Hollywood’s possibly blinding bright lights get to him. He still balances the pirate subculture (that follows him to this day, along with all the other niche fandoms that he has covered) with the right perspectives on life, mental health, and well-being.

While Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl is available anytime for streaming through Disney+ or to rent through Prime Video and elsewhere, Trauma Center: Psychosis will be available in theaters and on various VOD platforms starting September 1st.

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