Geoffrey Rush thinks the 'Pirates of the Caribbean' franchise was wise to avoid stereotypes.

The 65-year-old actor - who stars as Hector Barbossa in the money-spinning movie series - has claimed the success of the 'Pirates' films can be linked to their unconventional characters, like Captain Jack Sparrow.

He explained: ''Right from the beginning, we always talked about how pirate films were a bit dead in the water, maybe since the '50s with Errol Flynn and Burt Lancaster, certainly as a populist film. There's been 'The Princess Bride', and films like that.

''We were very low down on the summer release schedule. We were lost in the small print in the trades, under 'This is what's coming out, in the summer of 2003'.

''Jerry Bruckheimer timed it right. This was pre-Twitter and pre-social media. It really thrilling caught people's imaginations, and I think part of that was the originality of how Johnny [Depp] led the company and created a pirate that had none of the traditional tropes.''

Geoffrey thinks his on-screen co-star and his original way of thinking has been central to the success of the franchise.

The actor told Collider: ''[Depp] does have a tangential, warped, absurd, creative mind, and he looked at the idea that they all drank rum and they were always in the sun.

''He said, 'Geoffrey, man, their brains are fried!' And then, he talked about rock stars of the '60s and the flamboyant clothing. And he came up with this idea, which I thought was really, really clever, where he said, 'In the script, sometimes I'm on boats and sometimes I'm on land, and I just want to play around with never getting my sea legs and land legs in order,' and that gave him so much scope.

''And with Barbossa not having a parrot, but having a monkey, we tried to find archetypes and not stereotypes.''