In 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?