Disney, in an effort to be "mean, lean and cost-effective," has reduced the budget for 2011's "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides" to $100 million less than it spent on 2007's "At World's End." That means Capt. Jack Sparrow (played by Johnny Depp) will have more scenes on land than sea and that more of the filming, which begins in June, will be done in places such as London instead of the actual Caribbean. Producer Jerry Bruckheimer insists that audiences won't notice, until they spy Big Ben in the background.
The final reel
Patrick Dempsey will be Megan Fox's boss in "Transformers 3." ... Steven Spielberg's next project is the World War I drama "War Horse." ... Hugo Weaving will be Red Skull in "Captain America"; Tommy Lee Jones also is reported to be joining the cast. ... Indie darling Greta Gerwig ("Greenberg") will play Liza Minnelli to Russell Brand's Dudley Moore in the "Arthur" remake. Helen Mirren also is on board (as John Houseman?) ... On the heels of the cancellation of "Anchorman 2" comes this tweet from Ben Stiller: "Ron Burgundy and Derek Zoolander looking to appear in sequels. Both men are destitute, without means or intellect to fund their own comebacks." ... Sam Rockwell reunites with "Iron Man 2" director Jon Favreau for "Cowboys and Aliens," also starring Harrison Ford and Daniel Craig.