The first official image from next summer’s The Lone Ranger has been released, featuring stars Armie Hammer and Johnny Depp as the classic re-imagined western heroes the Lone Ranger and Tonto.
You can check out the image here below.
The Lone Ranger reunites Depp with the Pirates of the Caribbean team of director Gore Verbinski, writers Ted Elliott and Terry Rossio, and producer Jerry Bruckheimer.
The start of production had been delayed for several months due to studio Disney’s concerns over the film’s absurd $250 million budget, most of which was doubtlessly going to the planned elaborate visual effects and massive above-the-line salaries. Before the film could be shut down indefinitely the studio and filmmakers managed to trim $35 million off the budget, making it a more bearable prospect. Still, it’s going to be a $215 million western.
But I’m intrigued by this image even though Depp’s character looks almost exactly like I expected. The eclectic actor-turned-movie mega star has spoken at great length about his Native American heritage so any chance of him making his Tonto a goofy second cousin to Captain Jack Sparrow is pretty much nonexistent. The tribal war paint and feathers that adorn his face and chest are a nice touch. Hammer, on the other hand, looks appropriately Lone Ranger-ish with the character’s trademark domino mask and white cowboy hat.
There’s going to be a lot of debate over this image, but I quite like it. Using an iconic fictional hero to hopefully recapture some of that Pirates of the Caribbean lightning in a bottle is a risky venture, but if anyone can do it’s these guys. In any case I’m hoping to hear a big, booming orchestral version of the “William Tell Overture” next summer.
Here’s the plot synopsis for The Lone Ranger:
From producer Jerry Bruckheimer and director Gore Verbinski comes Disney/Bruckheimer Films’ “The Lone Ranger.” Tonto (Johnny Depp), a spirit warrior on a personal quest, joins forces in a fight for justice with John Reid (Armie Hammer), a lawman who has become a masked avenger.
The Lone Ranger also stars Helena Bonham Carter, William Fichtner, Tom Wilkinson, and Barry Pepper. The film opens on May 31, 2013.