British director Mike Newell is understood be in talks with Walt Disney Pictures to direct The Lone Ranger.
The big-screen version of the Wild West adventures of the masked cowboy, his sidekick Tonto and his horse Silver has been adapted by Ted Elliot and Terry Rossio. Johnny Depp will star as Tonto but The Ranger has yet to be cast.
Newell’s credits include Harry Potter And The Goblet Of Fire, Love In The Time Of Cholera and Four Weddings And A Funeral. He also recently signed up to direct The Box Of Delights, adaptation of the children’s novel by John Masefield. Brilliant Films is financing the project through its own development fund and the company’s Joe Abrams and Rory Gilmartin will executive produce alongside Newell.
Newell is already working with Disney and Jerry Bruckheimer, who is producing The Lone Ranger, on Prince Of Persia: The Sand Of Time. Newell has also previously worked with Depp on Donnie Brasco.
Independent Talent Group, the agency representing Newell, declined to comment on whether a deal had been signed.