Depp’s version of The Lone Ranger flops

"See the guy in the mask, Illya? He's going to play you in the U.N.C.L.E. movie." "That's a relief. For a minute, I thought it might the fellow in the odd makeup."

“See the guy in the mask, Illya? He’s going to play you in the U.N.C.L.E. movie.”
“That’s a relief. For a minute, I thought it might the fellow in the odd makeup.”

The $225 million (or more) Johnny Depp version of The Lone Ranger is now considered a flop after selling only $29.4 million in tickets in the U.S. and Canada during the July 5-7 weekend and $48.9 million since its July 3 opening.

This is worth noting here for two reasons: 1) Armie Hammer, who plays the title character, is slated to portray Illya Kuryakin in an upcoming film version of The Man From U.N.C.L.E. 2) Johnny Depp, whose Tonto is the primary character in the latest incarnation of The Lone Ranger, had expressed his interest in the Kuryakin role back in 2011, which greatly complicated the production of the would-be movie.

After watching The Lone Ranger film, it’s still hard to tell how Hammer will fare playing Kuryakin in the new U.N.C.L.E. movie. In The Lone Ranger, Hammer’s John Reid is a doofus when he’s supposed to be and heroic when he’s supposed to be. Any problems with the movie stem more from its length (149 minutes), how it mocks the Lone Ranger character (multiple times) and how it indulges Depp (constantly).

In the last 20-25 minutes, the movie finally kicks into gear, helped by the William Tell Overture, but it takes too long to get there. The Depp version of The Lone Ranger also borrows The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance. But Valance’s Ransom Stoddard (James Stewart), while naïve when he first goes to the West, isn’t a moron as Hammer’s John Reid is depicted at times. Also, like Liberty Valance, there’s a flashback within a flashback.

UPDATE: The Hollywood Reporter estimates that Disney could lose as much as $150 million on The Lone Ranger.

3 Responses

  1. And that might the Man from Uncle movie up nex

  2. Role of Alexander Waverly? Robert Vaughn of course

  3. Wow, Two and half hours long – and it only becomes good in the last half hour. Tells you right there that many movie adaptations of half hour television shows only have enough bang for 30 minutes.
    The one that was released in 1981 suffered from a curse, too. The Lone Ranger is a television show that probably takes too much story telling to make it to the big screen.

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