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The Greatest Pirate Characters in Film

They're swashbuckling. They're bold. And they're always on the wrong side of the law. The greatest pirate characters in movies are memorable figures that audiences love – or love to hate. Some good pirate characters search for treasure on the high seas, while other fictional pirates call space their home. A few of the best pirate roles even earned Oscar nominations for the actors who played them.

What roles will you find on this list of the best pirate characters in films? Without a doubt, Johnny Depp's Captain Jack Sparrow is one of the most popular pirates to ever hit the silver screen. The actor even earned an Oscar nomination for his instantly iconic performance. His Pirates of the Caribbean co-stars Will Turner and Hector Barbossa are also fan favorites. Captain Hook and Smee keep Never Never Land on alert in all of the Peter Pan movies.

Not all pirates appear in period films. In the 2013 movie Captain Phillips, Abduwali Muse commandeered the MV Maersk Alabama and its crew. Other great roles featured on this top pirate characters in film list include Yondu from Guardians of the Galaxy and Morgan Adams from Cutthroat Island.

You decide which pirate character deserves the treasured number-one position on this list. Vote your favorite fictional pirates up to the top and add any good pirate movie roles that are missing.
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  • Johnny Depp
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    1,216

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Pirates of the Caribbean 5

    Captain Jack Sparrow is a fictional character and a main protagonist in the Pirates of the Caribbean film series. The character was created by screenwriters Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio, and is  ...more

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  • Geoffrey Rush
    4,466
    1,558

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl

    Hector Barbossa is a fictional character in the Pirates of the Caribbean film series partly inspired by Barbarossa Hayreddin Pasha. Barbossa is portrayed by Australian actor Geoffrey Rush in all the  ...more

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  • Bill Nighy
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    1,990

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

    Davy Jones is a character in the Pirates of the Caribbean feature film series, who first appears in the second film, Dead Man's Chest and returns in the series' third installment, At World's End. He  ...more

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  • Jason Isaacs, Danny Kaye
    4,065
    2,249

    FilmPeter Pan, Peter Pan, Hook, Peter Pan, Disney's Halloween Treat

    James Hook is a fictional character from the adventure, fantasy film Neverland.  ...more

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  • Kevin McNally
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    1,840

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

    Joshamee Hamish Gibbs is a fictional supporting character in the Pirates of the Caribbean film series. He is portrayed by Kevin McNally and voiced by Steven Jay Blum in video game adaptations.  ...more
  • Michael Rooker
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    2,234

    FilmGuardians of the Galaxy

    Yondu is a fictional character, a superhero in the Marvel Comics universe, and a founding member of the original Guardians of the Galaxy team. Michael Rooker plays the character in the 2014 film  ...more

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  • Orlando Bloom
    3,599
    1,982

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

    William "Will" Turner, Jr. is a fictional character and the main Protagonist in the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films. He appears in The Curse of the Black Pearl and two of its sequels, Dead  ...more
  • Keira Knightley
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    1,226

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

    Elizabeth Swann is a fictional protagonist of the first three films and a character in the Pirates of the Caribbean film series. She appears in The Curse of the Black Pearl and two of its sequels,  ...more

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  • 9

    Long John Silver

    Charlton Heston, Tim Curry
    3,127
    1,778

    FilmTreasure Island, Muppet Treasure Island, The Pagemaster, Treasure Planet, Treasure Island

    Long John Silver is a fictional character and the main antagonist of the novel Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson. The most colorful and complex character in the book, he continues to appear  ...more
  • 10

    "Bootstrap Bill" Turner

    Stellan Skarsgård
    2,013
    1,554

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

    William "Bootstrap Bill" Turner, Sr., portrayed by Stellan Skarsgaard, is a crewmember on Davy Jones' Flying Dutchman and Will Turner's father. He was once an associate of Jack Sparrow's who
  • Bob Hoskins, Bill Thompson
    2,088
    1,617

    FilmNeverland, Peter Pan, Peter Pan, Hook

    Mr. Smee is Captain Hook's bo'sun in J. M. Barrie's play Peter Pan, or the Boy Who Wouldn't Grow Up and the novel Peter and Wendy.  ...more
  • Penélope Cruz
    2,123
    1,679

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

    Angelica Teach is a fictional character in the 2011 action film Pirates Of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tides.  ...more
  • Chriss Anglin, Randy Quaid
    1,759
    1,404

    FilmPirates of Treasure Island, Treasure Island Kids: The Pirates of Treasure Island

    Captain J. Flint is a fictional 18th century pirate who features in a number of novels and films. Created by Scottish writer, Robert Louis Stevenson, Flint first appears in a children's magazine in  ...more
  • Vin Diesel
    1,953
    1,724

    FilmThe Chronicles of Riddick: Dark Fury, Untitled Chronicles of Riddick Sequel, The Chronicles of Riddick, Pitch Black

    Richard B. Riddick, more commonly known as Riddick, is a fictional character and the antihero of four films in the Riddick series, as well as the two video games The Chronicles of Riddick: Escape  ...more
  • David Bailie
    1,533
    1,438

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

    Cotton is a fictional character from the 2003 film Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, the 2006 film Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, and the 2007 film Pirates of the  ...more
  • 16

    Ragetti

    Mackenzie Crook
    1,484
    1,398

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: At World's End, Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest

    Ragetti is a fictional character from the 2003 film Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, the 2006 film Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, and the 2007 film Pirates of the
  • Martin Klebba
    1,480
    1,403

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

    Marty is a fictional character from the 2003 film Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, the 2006 film Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, and the 2007 film Pirates of the  ...more
  • 18

    Billy Bones

    Justin Jones, Patrick McGoohan
    1,204
    1,439

    FilmPirates of Treasure Island, Treasure Planet, Treasure Island, Treasure Island, Treasure Island

    Billy Bones is a fictional character, in the first section of Robert Louis Stevenson's novel Treasure Island.  ...more
  • Errol Flynn
    1,282
    1,553

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  • 20

    Morgan Adams

    Geena Davis
    1,275
    1,622

    FilmCutthroat Island

    Morgan Adams is a fictional character from the 1995 film Cutthroat Island.
  • Chow Yun-Fat
    1,051
    1,434

    FilmPirates of the Caribbean: At World's End

  • 22

    Abduwali Muse

    Barkhad Abdi
    853
    1,472

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    Abduwali Muse is a fictional character from the 2013 film Captain Phillips.
  • Mayumi Tanaka
    562
    1,057

    FilmOne Piece

    Monkey D. "Straw Hat" Luffy is a fictional character and the protagonist of the One Piece franchise created by Eiichiro Oda. He is first introduced in the manga chapter "Romance Dawn", first  ...more

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  • 24

    Euron Greyjoy

    137
    386
  • 25

    Capt. Vallo

    Burt Lancaster
    499
    1,404

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