The period Western film already had Gore Verbinski attached to direct with Jerry Bruckheimer producing. Depp was to play Tonto and Armie Hammer (The Social Network) won the role of the title character. According to Deadline, Disney axed the remake due to the film's $250 million budget.
The original Lone Ranger began as a radio serial in 1933 and ran as a TV show from 1949-1957. The film was scheduled for a December 21, 2012 release.