Johnny Depp Considers ‘Tonto’ an Opportunity to salute Native Americans. Recently announced, Gore Verbinski‘s The Lone Ranger starring Johnny Depp has an official release date of May 31, 2013. In an interview with MTV News, the Pirates of the Caribbean star stated that he is excited to play the role of The Lone Ranger sidekick “Tonto” in the up-and-coming film. After getting over budgetary concerns, which caused the film to miss the initial autumn start date – the film was originally budgeted at $250 million and has since been cut down to $215 million. Its good to hear that production has begun and that positive press is out about the film’s production, after Disney initially scrapped the project.
I am actually excited to see this film because we all know that Johnny Depp will make the character “Tonto” interesting. Depp is known for his gift for immersing himself in the uncanny characters he plays and he has big plans for his role as “Tonto”. He is quoted as saying:
“I like the character. I think I have interesting plans for the character, and I think the film itself could be entertaining and very funny,” he said. “But also I like the idea of having the opportunity to make fun of the idea of the Indian as a sidekick — which has always been [the case] throughout the history of Hollywood, the Native American has always been a second-class, third-class, fourth-class citizen, and I don’t see Tonto that way at all. So it’s an opportunity for me to salute Native Americans.”
“We knew that the budget was going to be huge initially, and we also knew that it was going to be shut down for a while, and it was kind of like we patiently wait — we shave a little bit here, we do a little bit there, [and] they fix it.”
His portrayal of the character “Tonto” is a personal one for Depp: he say’s he is part Native American and shudders to think of what Native American’s experienced during the white settlers encroachment on Native American lands.
So what will the ‘reinvented’ Tonto and The Lone Ranger be like? I guess we all will have to wait for the film’s May 31, 2013 release date.