From whiskey-soaked swindlers to even more intoxicated, mutinous idiots, these famous pirates offer the best aspects of what exactly makes a great pirate. A lot of movies just aim for the old cliched definition of a pirate without adding much actual character development to them. This list of famous pirates features characters that embrace the pirate lifestyle while being charasmatic and nuanced enough to stick out above the rest.
Captain Hook was the antagonist played by Dustin Hoffman in the movie "Hook." Hook is one of the most famous pirates because he is just such a jerk who will stop at nothing to mess with Peter Pan, even kidnapping his children. Hook's fear of the ticking of a clock that was swallowed by a crocodile (along with his hand) gives the character even more depth. He is just a fantastic, humanistic villain that is easily remembered.
The often-drunk pirate from the "Pirates of the Carribean" movies, played by Johnny Depp, is one of the most-loved pirate figures in recent memory. Sparrow is a one of the most famous pirates because of his likeable demeanor. He is a stereotypical drunk, slurring pirate taken up a notch. From his hilarious mannerisms to his ridiculous sword fights, Jack Sparrow will always be one of the most famous movie pirates out there.
Also from the (second and third) "Pirates of the Carribean" movies, Jones is the unwilling villain played by Bill Nighy. Jones is a great pirate because of how insanely freaky he is. Not only is he the most feared pirate in the movie, due to how beastly he and his crew are, but he also looks like Cthulhu, the giant, tentacle-faced ocean monster from the H.P Lovecraft mythos. Jones also has a sympathetic backstory, with him being unwillingly controlled by the person who has possession of his heart, which he cut out after losing his woman.
This famous pirate from the movie "Pirates" is played by Walter Matthau. Red is a very famous pirate due to him being extremely hilarious. He is a massively drunken pirate that is forced into a place of power that is too much for him after a successful mutiny. Matthau plays Red fantasically, with drunken pirate songs and massive slurring. Red is just a very likeable pirate, like a drunk, smelly, singing uncle.
Played by the dashing Erroll Flynn, Captain Blood is one of the "good guy" pirates. Hes much more of Robin Hood figure instead of a drunken jerk. Being 1935, when drunks were not as adorable and funny, Flynn played Captain Blood as more of a dashing, suave figure. Captain Blood remains a famous pirate because of his adventurous rise to power and willingness to help those in need. He is more of a pirate to look up to instead of laugh at.