Now that Disney, Gore Verbinski and Johnny Depp have ironed out most of the budget kinks surrounding their production of "The Lone Ranger," we can all rest easy that the masked man and his trusty sidekick Tonto are headed to the big screen soon.
When MTV News caught up with Verbinski at the Hollywood Awards Gala Monday night, where his quirky animated film "Rango" received the Hollywood Animation Award, we asked how he was feeling about the film and what his plans are for the adaptation.
"I feel great. We're not shooting a Western in the middle of winter; the whole thing is pushed into a more reasonable time of year, so now we have to go make the movie," Verbinski said, speaking to the film's new May 31, 2013, release date. "There's been a lot of talk. Hopefully in a year and a half we'll have something we can talk about."
Verbinski went on to say that he's been hard at work on the screenplay for two years and that the central character is not the Ranger.
"It's all built around Tonto," he said. "You've heard the Lone Ranger's story; you just haven't heard it told from this guy, and he was there."
Depp has already teased that their take on the beloved duo's Western adventures will be "interesting," to say the least.
"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, fifth-class citizen, and I don't see Tonto that way at all. So it's an opportunity for me to salute Native Americans."
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