‘The Lone Ranger’ With Werewolves Expected to Start Production Early 2012

Published 3 years ago by , Updated September 18th, 2012 at 8:24 am,

News that Disney’s The Lone Ranger was abruptly canceled last month came as a huge shock to film fans everywhere, but not as big a shock as the reason – the budget had ballooned to $250 million, partly due to the subject material involving werewolves.

Soon after, word on the street was that producer Jerry Bruckheimer, director Gore Verbinski, and star Johnny Depp were hard at work cutting the budget because they really, really wanted to make their Lone Ranger film with werewolves. Now comes word that they’re incredibly close to making that deal, and production will start in early 2012.

According to Deadline, the deal will likely be sealed next week, and all the major players who were previously onboard– Johnny Depp as Tonto, Armie Hammer as The Lone Ranger, Ruth Wilson as the love interest, Bruckheimer producing, and Verbinski directing – will still be in the picture. The reason for Disney’s change of heart? Verbinski and company have managed to bring the budget down from $250 million plus to $215 million. As to whether or not the project will make its originally scheduled release date of December 2012, that’s still to be decided.

Werewolves In The Lone Ranger The Lone Ranger With Werewolves Expected to Start Production Early 2012

In fairness, Gore Verbinski is an occasionally great director, and a Lone Ranger about werewolves and mysticism could – emphasis on “could” – genuinely be excellent. If the writing’s there, the direction’s there, and the talent’s there, nothing else really matters. Right?

Of course, we’re left wondering what was so bad about the original Lone Ranger story in the first place:

‘Six Texas Rangers are ambushed by Butch Cavendish and his band of dastardly outlaws. One – Dan Reid – survives and is nursed back to health by a Native American named Tonto. John Reid and Tonto dig six graves so Cavendish will believe Reid to be dead, then Reid fashions a black mask out of his dead brother’s vest and becomes The Lone Ranger. Together, he and Tonto hunt down Cavendish and his outlaws.’

Honestly, that sounds like a pretty darn good movie. Simple, yes, but timeless, too.

What are you feelings on this film? Do you want to see a Lone Ranger with Tonto as the main protagonist and werewolves as the villains? Or does even the presence of Gore Verbinski and Johnny Depp not make up for the fact that there are werewolves in The Lone Ranger for no discernable reason? Let us know in the comments.

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Follow me on Twitter @benandrewmoore.

The Lone Ranger is expected to start production in January or February 2012.

Source: Deadline

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  1. That description of the movie still doesn’t mention werewolves. Just how are they planning on adding this un-needed element into the film? So far, it’s still a ‘Fail’ of an idea unless they give us some more details that make it plausable for werewolves to be in this movie.

    The idea of a Lone Ranger movie, even one where Tonto is the main character, is still a great idea. Make that movie! But for now, leave out the werewolves please.

    • @Jeff

      Read the line above the “description.” It’s the “origin story” of the Lone Ranger, not the synopsis of the forthcoming movie.

      And yeah, werewolves = bad idea

      • yep, I mis-read that part, but still agree with everyone that there is no need for werewolves. That origin story could be a good movie.

  2. Werewolves + Lone Ranger= EPIC FAIL.

    • The Lone Ranger doesn’t need werewolves to be an epic fail. Just sayin’

  3. Werewolves???? Who thought that was a good idea….

  4. Terrible idea

  5. Werewolves belong nowhere near the Lone Ranger!

    That being said, if the idea behind the movie is one which the backstory/origin of the Lone Ranger is assumed known to the audience then–and only then–could you make an entire film where the antagonist is a werewolf. A kind-of story in the line of “The Adventures of the Lone Ranger.”

  6. Ugh. I was actually happy when I heard this wasn’t going to happen. Tonto as the main protagonist? He’s a sidekick, but I can get over that as long as the Lone Ranger isn’t portrayed as an inept fool that can’t do anything without Tonto’s help. Werewolves? Terrible idea! Didn’t they learn anything from Green Hornet? If you throw out the best parts of the character and his back story (and make them comedic)you lose what was great about them in the first place. They should refer to the comics published by Dynamite as a great basis for the movie.

  7. I’d love to see a Lone Ranger movie. Just not this one.

    • I’ll go along with that! A Lone Ranger movie like from the good old days? Dynamite, I could get off on that. But with werewolves? What the heck?! I am not so sure about that one! Although I do like werewolf movies if well-done, but….I just don’t know here. Is that because The Lone ranger has silver bullets, and some indians believed in shape-shifting elementals and spirits? And I can not see this with Tonto as the main character and The Lone ranger as second fiddle “Tonto & The Lone Flunky”?!), nor can I see Depp as having any role he would fit in in this movie. And no dumb comedy like that travesty that wrecked havoc with my precious Green Hornet! And is it John Reid or Dan Reid? The article above lists both names, although somehow I thought Dan was correct–altho I could be wrong on that. And I reiterate, werewolves?!
      Incidently, what relation is The Lone Ranger to The Green Hornet? I was thinking he is an ancestor of some kind. Any relation to Tarzan or The Phantom or Doc Savage? (Oh, we need a Doc Savage movie, also!)(And a SERIOUS Green Hornet flick!).

      • Dan Reid was the nephew of the Lone Ranger, and Britt Reid (Green Hornet) was Dan Reid’s son. Of course, that was way back during the radio show, so the relationship would need to be (or has been) altered to keep Green Hornet in modern times.

  8. This film is an abomination

  9. I guess that explains why he has silver bullets.

    I was onboard for this movie but if it’s got werewolves because of they thought the original story that hasn’t been seen (except in the 1980 movie) wasn’t good enough to carry a movie then that’s just stupid…like this comment.

    Guess I’ll have to watch the 80 flick again…well…the first half of it

  10. The names backing this belong to creative, intelligent people; and their eagerness to get it made is impressive. And this is being made for a generation that isn’t familiar with the old TV show, so it really doesn’t matter how awful it sounds to me (and it does sound awful).

    Still, if they set this movie in the West, not in some sort of urban or fantastic setting, I can’t see it working. The early John Ford understood the West: you have to enclose your characters in something when you first show them in the setting; and the only possible storyline is their going out of their enclosure into that awe-full and challenging place and having adventures, until they find or regain something that will be of value to them when they return to their enclosed setting.

    Fantasy creatures of any sort aren’t enclosed – they open the imagination up. Putting them in the 19th century American West is redundant. The end result weakens both the fantasy and the Western setting. The West is about its natives and how they survive (or fail to) – what’s in their hearts and minds moves the plot along, but doesn’t work very well as a separate plot element.

    I can’t see this working. (Now, watch it become a huge hit.)

    • disney was gunshy on this film due ,in part, by the failure of “cowboys and aliens” a western/sci-fi mixed genre. why screw it up again? do a western! let the lone ranger ride the west, not a supernatural landscape.

    • The names backing this belong to creative, intelligent people

      This is a 3 fold oxymoron:

      1) Incorporating Werewolves, a purely European myth, into the old west is, to say the least, completely idiotic.

      2) To make it worse they are then trying to mesh it with one of our American legends; The Lone Ranger, a persona who NEVER was meant to fight against supernatural forces.

      The only way I could see this working is if they instead made the antagonists Skinwalkers. That at least makes sense in the context of American Indian mythos. Hard to believe there is any intelligence or creativity involved if they couldn’t even manage to make that connection to make it even the slightest bit feasible.

      3) They are pushing the Lone Ranger into the background and making this about TONTO?! That would be like making a Batman movie and focusing it on Robin.

      All in all it is going to put a silver bullet into the heart of yet another of our beloved icons. :(

      • After realizing that I, too, would go see a “Gone With the Wind” with robots, I’ve rethought this a bit.

        The main problem is that people want a good old-fashioned Western. John Wayne did all right with those, and he got straight to the point about their appeal: “Don’t ever for a minute make the mistake of looking down your nose at westerns. They’re art–the good ones, I mean. They deal in life and sudden death and primitive struggle, and with the basic emotions–love, hate, and anger–thrown in. We’ll have westerns films as long as the cameras keep turning. The fascination that the Old West has will never die.”

        Nobody’s doing those these days, and Disney and these folks are not the ones to expect that from. So, there’s that.

        I did a little research on the Lone Ranger, too, and don’t agree with the “three-way oxymoron” viewpoint:

        1) Nobody has said it’s going to be European werewolves. Native legends are rich, and given the description of the two main characters as an “odd couple,” who knows but they might have a funky version of the Cherokee “two wolves” legend or something like that in mind.

        2) Fran Striker is said to have written the Lone Ranger, who only dates back to 1933 and does have the Green Hornet as a descendant, as “the embodiment of a prayer.” That’s not per se supernatural (a secular Jesus type of character would have been very controversial back in the day), but it is not too far from Don Quixote (see http://screenrant.com/lone-ranger-johnny-depp-gore-verbinski-sandy-101993/ ).

        3) As I understand it, the story is more of the Lone Ranger as seen through the eyes of what does kind of sound like a Captain Jack Tonto. They’re both at the story’s focus.

        I don’t know. The whole “is the world crazy” thing was done quite well by Wayne during the first scenes in “The Shootist,” where he rode into town and got yelled at for stopping in the middle of the street to read a newspaper. The West at a certain time period does lend itself to such interpretations, and there are a lot of people today who wouldn’t get the “Shootist” scene. This may work for them.

        Me, I’ll hold out for a real Western…the good ones…art.

  11. Well, ONE thing about this makes sense.. keep in mind what ammunition the Lone Ranger uses.

  12. Hence the phrase “Hi-ho silver,away!”. I just hope that they make sense out of it & make an entertaining movie. I guess we’ll have to wait & see how crappy or campy this one turns out…

  13. Yeah I remember the episode of the Lone Ranger with werewolves…. It sucked!

  14. “Cowboys & Aliens” was bad enough. Now they’re gonna try cowboys & WEREWOLVES??!

  15. Do they just sit around and pull concepts out of a hat and put them together now?
    How about remake Back to the Future, only they’re all vampires! Or redo Butch Cassidy, only they live underwater in Atlantis!! Or Gone with the Wind, but they’re robots!!
    Seriously?!?!

    • I would go see Gone With the Wind with robots.

    • No, this was simple juvenile thinking……..Lone Ranger uses silver bullets…..Werewolves are killed with silver……*bing* stupid connection is made…..Lone Ranger vs Werewolves!, we are SOOOOO BRILLANT! /facepalm

  16. There will be NO werewolves in this movie. Go to Terry’s website – the original script writer. He said that there were no werewolves in the first script nor in the finial draft. This was started as a rumor in order to create negative buzz for the film.

    • Except for the fact that the proposed budget was calling for 250 MILLION (and why it was getting kicked to the curb). You don’t spend that type of cash on a simple western. Last year’s “True Grit” only cost a mere 38 mil to make so why the insanely bloated budget if it’s not going to be laden down with CGI?

      The original script writer can say whatever he likes but facts is facts.

      • Actually, facts ARE facts.

        • um, that was not a spelling mistake there Mr. Dictionary ;)

          • You’re right, it was a grammatical mistake. “Facts” are plural :)

  17. @Aziz Lite

    LOL. Reminds me of the South Park episode where Family Guy writers were actually manatees.

    As far this film goes I’d rather not. Sounds like the works of a over the top action film like Pirates 2&3 or this upcoming Three Musketeer. SMH. Rather we get a “normal” western like the recent True Grit or 3:10 to Yuma.

  18. Not only will they make Tonto the lead (stupid) but they can’t even get his name right. The Lone Ranger was John Reid. His brother Dan was one of the rangers killed in the ambush. and vampires…Clayton Moore and Fran Striker are rolling over in their graves.

  19. I’m so thankful that Disney is moving forward with production of The Lone Ranger movie.

    I have no doubt that Johnny Drop and Gore Verbinski will make an epic tale out The Lone Ranger as was proven through their revolutionary redefinement of how we conceive Pirates in POTC.

    I also am totally on board with Silver Bullets, Werewolves, Big Thunder Mountain, Tonto and the Great Spirit. I’m genuinely looking forward to The Lone Ranger and John Carter of Mars next year.

  20. Not sure if I believe the rumor of werewolves being included in the story… though I could see this creative team wanting to include some supernaturnal elements. Whatever the case, any critical thinker would already know that adding werewolves would only make this movie *slightly* more unrealistic than the typical US western.

  21. It’ll probably be fine. They added supernatural elements to Pirates didn’t they? I mean they could have told a straight pirate story if they wanted to. And that turned out great. No reason to complain about something you can’t change.

  22. …I think I threw up a lot in my mouth…

  23. I’ll watch it if there are werewolves otherwise no. I don’t care enough or like lone ranger enough to see its real story. never liked it as a kid.

    cowboys, an indian, silver bullet, and werewolves? I can dig it

  24. Well, no one said they were actual werewolves. Think the new Sherlock Holmes. That would actually work.

  25. I agree with all the negative comments regarding Werewolves here. Why would they even consider putting that much money into a project like that? If they really want a good movie that will make the money then they need to do a class act like they did with Sherlock Holmes. Something that actually takes the original characters and makes them into true super stars for their time…..And drop Depp as the side kick…I like Depp in a lot of his previous movies, but I think a younger, stronger, and more naturally brown complexioned actor could be found. Depp just doesn’t seem like Tonto….Maybe cast as the master mind bad guy, but not Tonto or the Lone Ranger….

  26. Nuahualli is what i think the way is for this movie not a Werewolf per-say but a warlock that can shape shift with a stretch of the imagination its do-able

  27. Will be skipping if their are werewolves!

  28. Why is this even The Lone Ranger? Make it it’s own standalone movie…. and it might be great!

  29. Native indians and werewolfs. I thought this was supposed to be The Lone Ranger, not Twilight in the wild west.