New ‘Lone Ranger’ Images & Poster: Johnny Depp’s Tonto Outfit & Lots of Trains [Updated]

2 years ago by  

[UPDATE: We're added three new images and an international poster for Lone Ranger.]

It took longer (and cost more) than expected, but Disney’s Lone Ranger has finally finished production. The budget and scale is on par with latter installments in director Gore Verbinski’s and star Johnny Depp’s Pirates of the Caribbean trilogy, in part due to Verbinski’s desire to re-tell the titular horse-riding vigilante’s story ‘the old-fashioned way’ – shooting on location in desert regions around the Mid-West and transforming modern trains into operational steam engines.

Several new images have been released from Lone Ranger to mark the occasion – including, another version of the photo with the Ranger (Armie Hammer) and Tonto (Depp) that producer Jerry Bruckheimer unveiled back when principal photography had just begun.

One element that jumps out – or, rather, continues to jump out – about Lone Ranger is Depp’s unorthodox American Indian outfit, which is modeled after Kirby Sattler’s famous painting “I Am Crow.” Moreover, as suggested by the new images, Depp’s stuffed crow headpiece appears to have supernatural qualities, judging by the changing position of its mouth and wings. It could be a carryover from earlier script drafts for Lone Ranger, which were heavy on American Indian mysticism – including, those infamous “supernatural coyotes.”

Verbinski, during an interview with USA Today, described Tonto as “an odd-shaman, an outcast from his own tribe, who has created his own mystical world.” That description recalls “Nobody” (Gary Farmer), another unusual American Indian with his own spiritual beliefs, who travelled with Depp’s meek accountant William Blake in the Jim Jarmusch film Dead Man. Moreover, in a bit of self-reflexivity, it reflects Depp’s own efforts to honor his heritage, as the actor is said to be at least one-quarter Cherokee.

However, the Lone Ranger director refrained from revealing whether or not Tonto’s headpiece does, indeed, have life of its own, other than to say “It’s his companion. It’s a stuffed bird that he feeds birdfeed.”

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The other major issue worth considering about these Lone Ranger screenshots is the emphasis on trains and development of railroads, as was highlighted during the teaser shown at Disney’s Comic-Con panel this year. Verbinski confirmed this is an essential element to his re-framing of the Ranger legend:

“All the traditional westerns are about choice and the individual. When progress comes it’s much more difficult to define the individual in that world. The train represents all of that. What do we give up in the name of progress?”

Lone Ranger, for sure, won’t be your average summer blockbuster, between that philosophical content and a narrative that turns the traditional Ranger story on its head, transforming it into what Verbinski calls “a dysfunctional buddy movie.” The film appears to be his attempt to subvert western tropes, much like Pirates of the Caribbean did for swashbucklers; how successful Lone Ranger proves to be from an aesthetic and cultural standpoint, remains to be seen – though, we won’t bet against the film at the box office.

The Lone Ranger cast includes Helena Bonham Carter, Tom Wilkinson, Ruth Wilson, Barry Pepper, W. Earl Brown, and William Fichtner. Look for it to gallop into theaters on July 3rd, 2013.

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Source: USA Today

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  1. i have a feeling this is gonna go the way of cowboys and aliens and john carter. hopefully its good and can do good business.

    • Cowboys and Aliens would of been an awesome movie, if it didn’t have the aliens.

  2. Are these thespians working with a dead genre, choked with dust filled ancient tropes able to coax some box office gold out of a jaded audience, born of nuclear powered spaceships, world smashing particle guns, and mind bending time travelers or are they just wasting their time? Well maybe, if nothing else is going on, but July 3rd doesn’t sound too promising…

  3. There’s a market for westerns, personally I love them, but I am skeptical of Depp being … well Depp. I’m tired of his schtick. If you want to watch a fantastic western with a quirky sense of humor Dead Man is a gem. Also good to hear they are shooting on location. I’ll have to wait to see a trailer before I can say more but right now I’m on the fence

    • WHY DON’T YOU GIVE IT A TRY???YOU MAY LIKE IT!!I TRUST JOHNNY AND HE NEVER DISSAPOINTS ME!!BY THE WAY I HAVE SEEN THE DEAD MAN AND IT WAS AWESOME!BUT THE LONE RANGER COULD BE AWESOME TOO.DON’T JUDGE BEFORE YOU SEE SOMETHING!!!

      • Chill. Out. Man.

        • I also am not a well can he always sounds like Jack sparrow to me… my favorite role of his is finding neverland

    • Well It does have a chance It’s playing against a re-release of ‘ID4′ in 3-D. I guess it just depends on how good the story is and what the actors did with it. Still August 30TH may have been a better choice. Here’s hoping they crafted well…

    • Depps current “schtick” seems to occur most often when in the company of Tim Burton, and if the author is correct in that Depp is truly wanting to honor his heritage, then I expect he will play this role differently than his other stuff, which tends to be typically Burton-esque.

  4. Pictures look cool, hope this one is good i too worry that it could be really lame like some of the other movies that have been released with a western storyline (like Cowboys and Aliens which i didn’t see because i heard it was not good). I think that Armie Hammer and Johnny Depp will be a great pair of heroes together and i look foward to seeing Tom Wilkinson as the villain he’s awesome i love him in movies. So overall i hope its good it sure looks good from the pictures.

  5. the movie must be more then good too please the audience. but, the pics so far are looking good and in a cool landscape.

  6. i am going to seeeee itttt!!!!!!it looks awesome and johnny is so…well PERFECT!!!

  7. It really amazes me that people are still lining up for Depp. He’s laughing all the way to the bank. This just looks silly.

    • I agree. I can’t even take Depp seriously as an actor because in all of his recent films he seems to be the same oddball goober as every character. What’s the point of being an actor if you don’t have the ability to become somebody different? I am tired of these Depp movies.

  8. This should’ve been made as a fun adventure movie. It looks like their egos as artists will get in the way of that. Depp is trying to one up his own reputation for weird and Verbinski is trying to weigh down a childrens radio show from the 1940′s with heavy philosphical imagery. Yeah when I think of the Lone Ranger I think of what America gave up “in the name of progress”. What a load of crap from Hollywood.

    • From what I have read since this went into production, it is supposed to be that sort of “fun adventure movie”. People are reading way too much into it, and they’ve only just been releasing photos. Personally, I think all the ridiculousness is due to(mostly men) hating on Depp. Depp is similar in character in most of his recent films because that’s what Burton wanted. Clearly, as is evidenced by Finding Neverland, Depp is capable of not only creating a an emotionally complex character, the man can act too.

  9. And why didn’t they get a Native American to play Tonto?

    This just seems like a real life example of RDJ’s character in Tropic Thunder.

    • Depp IS part Native American.

  10. screenshots look bland. Not excited for this.

  11. this is gonna be good

  12. I’ll say this…I like the fact that they retired the blue suit LR wore when the show went to color…but a 2-piece suit? Why not a tan-colored or buckskin outfit?

    Blends into the desert a whole lot better than powder-blue or black…

  13. Sorry, Depp would not be a good Tonto. Or good anything else (look how he and Burton destroyed the sacred Dark Shadows!!) Tonto also never acted like that when he was played by Jay Silverheels. The Lone Ranger was the brains and “main man” of the duo. This is just Seth Rogan’s Green Hornet with western characters. And no American Indian ever-ever-ever looked like “Quoth the bird-hat, nevermore!”. Nope, sorry, not a one. What a waste and an insult to the original Lone Ranger! Depp looks like a drug-induced version of the cartoon “:Go-Go-Gophers” meets “F-Troop” or something. I wish The Lone ranger, Barnabas Collins, and The Green Hornet were real, so they could go slap around Seth Rogan, Johnny Depp, and Tim Burton!

    • Those Gophers were way Smarter than the Combined F-Troop….And really Goldilocks are the two us, you and I are we showing our ages??????

      • I’m 22 .. and I love F-Troop. = )

    • Depp’s Tonto design is modeled after Kirby Sattler’s famous Crow people painting “I Am Crow.” So perhaps you should take up your objections to the Crow people? He looks more American Indian than most, since Hollywood historically had a bad habit of making all Native Americans look like the same tribe. They were based off of a comfortable ideal of what most NON Native Americans thought Indians should look like. If that’s what you want, you need to build yourself a time machine and head back to black and white TV land.

  14. Wonder if they can connect The Lone Ranger and Green Hornet?

    Now I have people saying WTF?

    Yes evil plan is in play!

  15. Ok, since I cant be evil. Lone Ranger and Green Hornet, are the same family. Britt Reid is a great grand nephew of the Lone Ranger John Reid.

    Just an FYI if you did not know.

    • Yup it’s true, but The Lone Ranger’s name was Dan not John.

      • That is where it gets funny, Orignally his name was Dan, but conjecture led it to be John, Dan being the brother who was killed. Now the radio series says his name was Dan, The Tv show said His name was John, the 80s Movie stated John….Non Canon says John, Canon Says Dan and John..but its agreed

        The is the first name of the Lone Ranger.

        But Thanks for the info.

  16. A western Pirates of the Caribbean sounds pretty fun to me. I think Verbinski can get a pretty good handle on it if Rango is any indication.