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The Lone Ranger: Johnny Depp Movie Finds New Screenwriter

Lone RangerIn September 2008, we reported that plans were underway for a new Lone Ranger movie. While that news usually might not get much attention from the regular press, curiosities were peaked when it was learned that Johnny Depp would be playing one of the lead roles.

Interestingly, Depp won’t be playing the man behind the mask though, he’ll be playing Tonto, the Lone Ranger’s faithful companion. Depp’s grandmother was a full blooded Cherokee and he embraced his heritage in his self-directed 1997 movie The Brave.

While there’s been no further casting news, the Jerry Bruckheimer-produced project is still alive. In fact novelist and screenwriter Justin Haythe has just been picked to write the feature. Haythe has previously written the screenplays for The Clearing and Revolutionary Road.

In 2008, Terry Rossio and Ted Elliott, the screenwriters behind the Pirates of the Caribbean movie trilogy, were signed to write the script. They expressed an intent to stay true to the legend. It’s unknown what direction Haythe will take.

The star may have his own ideas though. Last summer, Depp said, “We’re still in the super-beginning stages so there’s all kind of possibilities, but I feel like I have some good ideas for the characters that are interesting, that I don’t think have been done before.”

The stories of the Lone Ranger and Tonto began on radio in the 1930s and then moved to movie serials. On television, the title character was played by Clayton Moore and briefly, by John Hart. Jay Silverheels played Tonto. The characters have been seen in animated form on the small screen over the years as well.

In 2003, the WB commissioned a pilot centered around new and younger versions of the characters (starring Chad Michael Murray and Nathaniel Arcand) but it didn’t get picked up.

What do you think? Do you think this Lone Ranger movie will ever be made? Will it be worth seeing?

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{ 10 comments… read them below or add one }

Barb loves depp November 19, 2011 at 8:43 pm

I would love too see depp as tonto


cliff spilky October 8, 2010 at 12:53 am

i met clayton moore and he was a wonderful lone ranger! the spirit and the majesty of this masked lawman who could not be bought and his roaming of the west working with lawmen and bringing justice and good will to the west is a legend that should stay in peoples hearts forever! like the man said WITH HIS FAITHFUL INDIAN COMPANION TONTO THE MASKED RIDER OF THE PLAINS LED THE FIGHT FOR LAW AND ORDER IN THE EARLY WESTERN UNITED STATES! RETURN WITH US NOW AS WE HEAR THE STIRRING CRY OF THE LONE RANGER!!! ‘HI O SILVER AWEIGH and then we hear the sirring background music and we see the lone ranger and silver his magnificent white horse and tonto on his horse as they ride into the sunset!!!! I rest my case!


Chris April 29, 2010 at 2:55 pm

I believe that John Hart is still alive He played the Ranger during the contract dispute was going on between Clayton Moore and the wrather Productions. This would be a great story line begining,with him handing over the mask to a grandson . I would look into it as a potential, and if you would need a narrator like in the series I believe that I have a strong voice to give you so that we would hear once again That the masked man rides with his faithful indian companoion tonto The LONE RANGER RIDES AGAIN.


Jerry April 28, 2010 at 11:00 am

I also agree with Chris and Sgt. Green. I hope the the writers and producers understand that there is a need to uphold the the spirit and charactors of The Lone Ranger and Tonto as they were in the TV show. Please don’t dumb down the charactors and please recreate these charactors so that kids and for that matter adults have something to aspire to. The Lone Rangers code of honour is something to strive for. Long my it live (thanks Clayton Moore for being the real life enbodiement for this…. I could hear the echo of “Hi Oh Silver Away!)


Chris March 6, 2010 at 9:33 am

I like the Idea of Johnny Depp acepting his Cherokee roots, But I hope that whom ever writes this holds true to the earlier scripts and follows the Masked Man and his Indian Companion True to form of the olden series and movies. It might be even better had they had either Clayton Moore or John Reid still around to hand off the Mask to a Grand son to continue thier quest for justice. Like those thrilling days of yesteryear THE LONE RANGER WOULD RIDE AGAIN


sgt green March 30, 2010 at 8:52 am

i agree with chris’s comment left at march 6, i am in iraq and i have the screenplay that pays tribute to clayton moore’s spirit and my story creates the lone ranger from birth. how do i get my screenplay into the right hands? i am us soldier currently in iraq, please someone help. yours truly, sgt green, andrew us army


dave February 16, 2010 at 6:15 pm

I hope it goes through. I don’t think there are enough GOOD westerns being made today. hopefully the legacy of the lone ranger won’t be tainted by bad acting and new and improved ideas. I think J D could be good as long he doesn’t get too twisted.


Davidgalvan February 16, 2010 at 1:03 pm

johnny deep?? the guy cannot act and he looks like a crack head, wont watch anything he’s in!!!!!!!


Rox February 15, 2010 at 9:53 pm

I would love to see the Lone Ranger. I’m a long time western fan (love horses). Hope it gets made


Thor February 15, 2010 at 7:16 pm

Of course it will be released, and very able to get a nomination at The Academy Awards


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