Johnny Depp Explains Why He Didn't Want Tonto To Be The "Sidekick" In THE LONE RANGER
Fans probably assumed that Tonto's prevalence in the trailers for The Lone Ranger was all down to Depp being the bigger draw, and while that might be the case, the actor has a very specific reason why he didn't want his character to play second fiddle to Armie Hammer's titular lawman..
Most of us wondered why Disney didn't just call their movie "Tonto And The Lone Ranger" and be done with it, given that Johnny Depp's Native American warrior -- usually portrayed as the Ranger's trusted sidekick -- is clearly the focus of most of the promotion for the film. But it seems Depp had a very good reason for not wanting Tonto to be cast in that role this time around, and it wasn't just so he could get top billing on the posters!...probably. “Since cinema has been around, Native Americans have been treated very poorly by Hollywood," Depp explains to Total Film. "What I wanted to do was play Tonto not as a sidekick – like ‘go fetch a soda for me, boy!’ – but as a warrior with integrity and dignity. It’s my small sliver of a contribution to try to right the wrongs of the past.” He's right of course, but what about another common fan gripe -- shouldn't an ACTUAL Native American have played the role in the first place? “I’m probably one sixteenth Native American, but of course that’s hard to trace. Basically that means it’s likely that, somewhere along the line, you were a product of rape.”
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