“Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl” Screenwriter, Jay Wolpert, Dead at Age 79

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Jay Wolpert, the game show creator and original producer of The Price Is Right and screenwriter for movie blockbusters including Disney's The Count of Monte Cristo and Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl, has died at 79.

What’s Happening:

  • Wolpert died Monday in Los Angeles after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.
  • Born on January 29, 1942, Wolpert grew up in a housing project in Brooklyn. In 1969, he won the tournament of champions on NBC’s Jeopardy!, and the experience opened him up to the world of game shows, which would become his focus for the next three decades.
  • Wolpert was a producer on The Price Is Right from 1972-78. During that time, he was credited for adding narrative and parody to the Showcase Showdowns, created the game show Double Dare for CBS and helped develop Match Game, Card Sharks and Family Feud.
  • The Count of Monte Cristo was fast-tracked and the film, released by Disney in 2002, starred Jim Caviezel and Guy Pearce and featured Henry Cavill in one of his first roles. Wolpert, at 60, had received his first feature screenplay credit.
  • Wolpert then found himself as the first writer hired by Disney to tackle a movie adapting its classic theme park ride, The Pirates of the Caribbean. Once again, he channeled his Classics Illustrated love plus his affinity for pirates — he had once made a pilot for a swashbuckling game show titled Duel in the Daytime to write the script for Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl.
  • Donations can be made in his honor to the Mary S. Easton Center for Alzheimer’s Disease Research.