The long proposed Lone Ranger movie from director Gore Verbinski, which would star Johnny Depp as the newly instituted main character of Tonto has appeared doomed since the beginning. Production was stopped due to budget concerns ($250 million dollar movie!), and Depp reportedly said earlier in the week he would jump ship if Verbinski isn't attached to direct.
Now, according to Variety, Disney wants to sit down with producer Jerry Bruckheimer and Verbinski over this Labor Day weekend to discuss a new budget, or the project won't make it to production. I guess the filmmakers have spent the last month or so working hard to bring the budget down to a still considerably high $200-215 million range.Cinemablend noted that 3:10 to Yuma was made for $55 million and the Coen Brother's True Grit had a budget of less than $40 million, so The Lone Ranger project would easily be far over budget compared to most successful westerns. I could imagine Disney doesn't want to gamble on a big budget western, considering how poorly Cowboys & Aliens did at the box office this summer.
Even if the film is given the greenlight, production still faces problems. Production may not be able to begin until early 2012, with the movie currently scheduled for a December 21, 2012 release date. It doesn't give the filmmakers much time to create the best quality movie.
I figured this project was doomed when I read about Verbinski wanting to include CGI werewolves or something along those lines in it. Maybe the two sides can work something out and get The Lone Ranger made. We should know what the DECISION is, probably by Tuesday.
(Sorry about the incomplete first submission mods, my computer was acting up)