Lord Cutler Beckett is the secondary antagonist of Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, and the main antagonist of its sequel Pirates of the Caribbean: At World's End. Beckett works for the East India Trading Company, and had a past with both Jack Sparrow and Weatherby Swann.
Beckett is best described as a cruel, unsympathetic and ruthless fiend preparing to murder masses of people in his ruthless attempt to completely eliminate piracy, including children. He was also rather arrogant, always coming off as coldly condescending and very confident that nothing could stand in his way. He is also a little boastful, as evidenced when he said "It's Lord now, actually" to Governor Swann when they crossed paths for the time time in a while in Dead Man's Chest. He is sophisticated, drinking tea on his flagship the HMS Endeavor before going into battle. He is also manipulative and smooth-talking, and will use any means necessary to get what he wants, and unlike most villains such as Governor Ratcliffe or Hades, he is very polite.
Beckett plays a very little part in Dead Man's Chest. During the events of the film, the leader of the East India Trading Company disrupts the wedding of William Turner and Elizabeth Swann, placing them both under arrest for their assistance in the escape of Jack Sparrow.
Beckett soon strikes a deal with Will Turner; Will and Elizabeth will be pardoned and Jack will be made a privateer under the English crown, in exchange for Jack's compass, which will lead him to the heart of Davy Jones. His overall goal is to capture the heart and use it as leverage against Davy Jones, forcing him into servitude with the EITC and help rid the world of piracy. Will agrees and sets off to locate Jack. Beckett also makes similar deals with Elizabeth and her father.
At the end of the movie, it is James Norrington who returns with, not the compass, but the heart itself, allowing him to restore his honor by becoming a high-ranking member of the EITC.
Beckett has a bigger role in At World's End as one of the main antagonists. During the events of the film, Beckett uses his newly gained power to start the end of piracy. He begins by executing anyone with pirate history, ordering his fleets to hunt down pirate vessels, and orders Davy Jones to devastate the pirate population with his dreaded ship and crew.
As Beckett attempts to end piracy and locate Shipwreck Cove, the pirates' main base, he starts to grow impatient and turns to make bargains with Will, in hopes him will help him find and eliminate the remains of the Pirate Lords, thus destroying piracy itself.
By the end of the movie, the Black Pearl and the Flying Dutchman have one last clash to decide the fate of piracy. When Davy Jones and the Dutchman fails, Beckett ignores his bargain made with Jack and Elizabeth to let them go if the Dutchman fails and orders his fleet to attack.
Thinking that the Black Pearl is both outgunned and outmanned, he confidently orders his flagship, the HMS Endeavor, to sink the Pearl with a broadside. Suddenly, the Dutchman emerges with its new captain, Will Turner, who ordered his new vessel to broadside the Endeavor along with the Pearl, thus sinking it and ending the reign of the tyrannical leader of the EITC for good. Upon realizing what actually lay in wait for him, he is rendered catatonic, being rendered completely speechless, and only saying his last words in a very shocked (and calm) tone, and is unable to even save himself due to his shocked state, nor can he even react to his being consumed by the explosion. His last words were his famous line, "It's just good business" before he and his ship are blown away and what remains of him collapse on his flag in the sea, which is rather hypocritical coming from an antagonist such as him. With Cutler Beckett dead, all the pirates celebrate their freedom from the EITC.
Cutler Beckett appears in the third installment of the Kingdom Hearts series as an antagonist in his homeworld "The Caribbean", heavily following the same role he played in At World's End. Just Like in the film, Beckett plots to find the Brethren Court to remove piracy and control the seven seas. Eventually, he meets his demise when both the Black Pearl and the Dutchman fire cannons on the Endeavor.
- In his first scene, Beckett claims that he and Jack Sparrow both left their mark on the other. The mark Sparrow left on Beckett was that he branded him as a pirate, but it was never revealed what the mark Sparrow left on Beckett was.
- Beckett and Salazar from Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales are the only main antagonists from the Pirates of the Caribbean film-series to not have been integrated into the original Pirates of the Caribbean ride.