|Depp and Hammer as Tonto and the Lone Ranger|
Critics have questioned whether it was appropriate to cast Depp as Tonto in the $225 million movie, which will be the costliest release of the summer. Depp has promised that American Indians will be proud of his portrayal. "This Tonto isn't the obedient sidekick he has been portrayed as before," he says.
The unorthodox Western has struggled through financial problems as the budget soared and Disney attempted to cut costs, at one time shutting down production altogether and then delaying the release date until the July 4 holiday weekend. The studio has a lot riding on the movie, having suffered a 125 million pounds loss on John Carter.
The Lone Ranger reunites the Pirates of the Caribbean triumvirate of producer Jerry Bruckheimer, director Gore Verbinski and star Johnny Depp and, says, Armie Hammer, who plays the masked Texas Ranger, "This is the rock and roll Lone Ranger. Our take is darker and more complex, more action-packed and more badass than the old TV show."