John O’Melveny Woods: Hollywood Favorite "Pirate, Code & Adventure Expert" Talks "Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides"

John O’Melveny Woods is a Hollywood favorite. A creative and successful entrepreneur who attended USC Film School, and has written numerous television shows, screenplays, articles, and non-fiction books.

He lives in Leucadia, California in a stunning beachfront bungalow filled with pirate memorabilia. Sitting on his deck you can hear the whispering history of the sea as the waves crash right below the deck. No wonder the man creates and sees the world through the eyes of high seas!

John O'Melveny Woods founded indieTV in 1997, which has been a pioneer in interactive television.  He later partnered the company with Microsoft to create interactive TV demonstrations. He is now working on a new indie TV project with innovative partner Human Unlimited Media ( 

10MInuteWIn™ was his first non-fiction book, and he then wrote two other popular non-fiction  books: The Jesse James Secret (Codes, Cover Ups and Hidden Treasure) which was made into a popular History Channel show and DVD

You can also see reviews of The Jesse James Secret here at

His latest HOT novel, Return to Treasure Island, has won numerous awards (and is up for many more) and recent praise includes a Silver Medal for Book of the Year from the Independent Book Publishers Association . The web site for the book is

Pirates are John's passion so who better to talk to review NEW Pirates of the Carribean!


John O'Melveny Woods

Pirates are John's passion so who better to review the NEW Johnny Depp film `Pirates of the Caribbean!

You can see more of John’s work and also purchase his books for the Kindle too at (and please ~~be a darling and leave John a great review! Tell him David sent you!)

He is also working on an action-adventure novel series called The Seekers™ with BarnYard Entertainment Group creating their unique multi-layered digital brand/entertainment platform around it ( More on this later...

This series includes travel, mystery, anthropology, history, historical landmarks, suspense, action and 'end of the world’  code breaking action! Think `Da Vinci Code’ meets `Where's Waldo’ with all the bells and whistles of the new digital landscape. John is working with digital guru Judy Shapiro of engageSimply™ ( developing this concept. See their latest interaction here,b=facebook.

John believes that there is a marriage between finding information and entertainment, where people can actually enjoy the process of learning. He is well respected by many for his ability to create complex codes and puzzles and bring them to life for the audience.

On a personal note John also has 18 acres outside Seattle, Washington where he spends a majority of his time for over 10 years and has many friends there. He is always in the loop on the latest in the digital landscape.


Hello "Mr. Keep Fiction Away but when it's Reality my Fingers Start Tapping". How are you?



Hahaha. I am real well and I do mean really well. Working hard and almost done with my first Seekers Series book...



That is so cool! And I know you can't share much on that "TOP SECRET" project yet! So let's talk about something unclassified and timely- tell me about your fascination with the Pirates of the Caribbean since the release is coming up! 



I am a die-hard pirates fan. Those 17th and 18th century rogues. I love the whole genre so much so that I wrote Return to Treasure Island, a sequel to Robert Louis Stevenson’s all time classic Treasure Island . So it’s no surprise that I await with great anticipation the fourth installment to the wildly successful Pirates of the Caribbean franchise scheduled to be released in a few weeks. Am I excited? You bet! And yet, I am feeling anxious as well.



What do you remember when the first film was released?



I remember standing in line for the premier of the Curse of the Black Pearl, the first movie based on the Disneyland ride that was released in 2003. I was completely captivated by the movie from the start: pirates, wenches, pirate ships, treasure, intrigue… and a love story. The adventure was fresh, inspired, well written and flawlessly directed by Gore Verbinski.



So it's safe to say you were hooked?



I was hooked. When the next movie in the franchise, Dead Man’s Chest, was released three years later, I was full of unbridled excitement and anticipation. However, this time I had a different sense of the movie. Although with the special effects (who can forget Davy Jones’ octopus’s face created by Industrial Light and Magic?) and the Kraken monster, the film seemed like it was heading into parody territory. I felt satiated at the end. Yet, much like a Chinese meal, felt less and less satisfied later and found myself hungry for the relationships, quick humor, fresh lines (remember Geoffrey Rush’s response to Kiera Knightley’s demand for honoring a parley? “The Code is more what you’d call ‘guidelines’ than actual rules.”), and great character development of the original movie. Okay, it was a sequel (technically part two of a trilogy according to the writers Ted Elliot and Tony Rossio), so I decided to cut them some slack.

Johnny Depp Movie Poster



LOL that was nice of you. What did you think of the third film?



In 2007 I again waited in line for the third installment, At Worlds End, and I think the title was more a premonition of the depth of creative story writing and development than Disney anticipated (it could easily have been called At Story’s End). It was cartoonish, irrelevant, and worse than unsatisfying. I mean, come on, flipping a boat upside down so as to be back on top of the Earth? Couldn't’t suspend my disbelief on that one. I will say I was anticipating more from Keith Richards’ Captain Teague… so I hope he has a bigger part in the next movie. Truth is, I longed for the simpler story and character interactions of the first one and a half movies. Pirates. Their codes. How they interacted. Finding treasure. In fact, I have rented the first two movies many times.  I have never rented the third one.



How are you feeling about the fourth film?



So therein is where my anxiety lays. Will this next Pirates of the Caribbean movie, On Stranger Tides, be closer to the first or third movie? I am not sure. Maybe they will regain the sense of wonderment, charm and story of the original, which I think Walt Disney himself would have loved. Then again, you never know with Hollywood.



Will you stand in line for the opening weekend to see it?


Nothing could stop me. As a pirate aficionado and eternal optimist, I am in hopes that Disney will be able to recapture the magic of the original movie. And as I prepare to finish my newest book, The Seekers, I am guided by the lessons learned from the Pirates franchise - stay focused on the story and true to the characters. In the end, that’s what gets ‘em coming back for more – every time!

Depp swaggers for new pirates france film festival cannes


Thanks for sharing your world John! And keep us in the loop on the Seekers Series!

And to my readers please start to follow me on twitter !! @@DavidRabadi

And follow John @TheSeekersBook @BarnYardGroup 

Top of Page
Join Splash Magazines

Feature Article

Tempflow™ and Tempur-Pedic® Reviews - What 35 Hours of Research Uncovered

Want Your Business to Male a Splash
<!-- #wrapper -->