The trailer for the long-awaited Disney film, The Lone Ranger, is out. And good God, did it make me cringe. First of all, did you know they’re still actually filming this movie? They’re still working on it. And they’ve been filming it for months and months, because studios think Johnny Depp can do no wrong and everything Depp touches turns to gold. Depp plays Tonto, and Armie Hammer plays The Lone Ranger. There’s some bonus Tom Wilkinson in here too:
It’s not even that this seems like a BAD movie, in that the film is poorly made or anything. They’re spending a lot of dough on this, they’re taking their time, and you can actually see the money that went into this. My fear is that this film will be another massive hit for Depp, and that they’ll make a sequel (or five) and it will be another franchise for Depp, and in all that time, no one will really ask the question: “Is Depp’s character kind of offensive?” Because it kind of is.
Think about it this way… even though Depp has long acknowledged his Cherokee blood, and he has the acceptance and love from Native Americans everywhere… this still could be an offensive portrayal. Depp is doing Native American “brown-face”. You can say, “Oh, but that’s authentic to the source material” and “that’s how it was done back in the day, it’s a wry parody of those kinds of ethnic stereotypes.” But if this film is a hit, there will be millions of kids out there who think it’s cool to imitate Depp’s performance. Who will be exposed to the Native American experience this way, a Disney-ified parody. Whatever, I guess. I’m sure I’m the only one around here who gets upset by this kind of thing.
Photos courtesy of WENN, Pacific Coast News.
Actually Depp looks more Mexican than Indian. Sorry sometimes I just like to make light of a situation.
Uh…I don’t get your joke. It just seems uneducated to those of us who are latinos. Most Mexicans have indigenous blood, which is why you think he looks like the stereotype. I’d also like to point out that there are plenty of light eyed and fair skinned Mexicans as well (just turn on Univision) which is exactly why I don’t get your “joke”.
Please don’t try to turn this into something it’s not. My son’s father is Honduran; so don’t go there please. I also have Mexican friends and I am fully aware of their different phenotypes. BTW my friend Catalina was the first one to mention that he looked Mexican a few years back and guess what she is Mexican.
God. That reminds me of that phrase ‘but some of my best friends are black’. How can I possible be racist. Well, I went out with this white guy who when we split called me the N word behind my back but he can’t be possibly racist cos he dated a black chick for a few month.s Ugh.
Oh please! I’m half Mexican and I don’t get why anyone ever thought Johnny Depp looked fully white. He looks like I do but a tad darker. He has medium olive skin, very dark, almond eyes and high cheekbones. I have light olive skin and hazel eyes. He looks Meztizo as the Mexicans call it.
So no I am not offended by this or the comment above. I could be offended that Johnny Depp is not full blooded and playing Native but that would mean I would also be offended by Jamie Chung playing Thai in the Hangover because her parents are Korean. Or when J-Lo played that Selina chick.
I can’t even see his face under his kachina doll make up. He looks like a kachina doll.
I agree. He looks Mexican. Which makes sense, since there’s so much mixture of bloods. I’m a blonde light eyed Mexican, but I know what you mean, Either way, he is hot and the movie will be a success.
I am native american and am often mistaken for Mexican. Even by Mexicans, in Mexico. Until I open my mouth that is. I love the Pirates movies so I’ll give this a try.
Google: I Am Crow. Should clear things up. 🙂
@Dalstongirl; if it makes you feel any better; I am Black as well and I have friends from all walks of life and races. All my boyfriends have been white, black, Spanish and yes even one Asian. What can I say I’m in NY the great melting pot.
What I said about Depp looking Mexican was not to stereotype. I have Italian friends who are told they look black, I have Puerto Rican and Mexican friends who look either white or black. I’ve been told that I have Asian features because of my eyes and I have had Latinos walk up to me and start speaking Spanish. I was referring to his phenotype and how he appears on the outside. So please don’t throw that I have friends who are black comment my way.
If you read my comments under the JLo Pic it’s clear to determine that I am a Democrat but guess what I have friends who are Republicans.
You were obviously joking, and you’re right there was a line of people ready to make a fight out of it. Don’t worry about it. 🙂
@Daisy thanks Daisy, finally someone gets me. LOL
yea seriously. it’s just observation and opinion; peeps need to chill
Johnny Depp looks and is mestizo. Most Mexicans in the US are mestizo. It means Indigenous and European. Latin America is as racist as the US. Yes, look at the anchor people and the actors. They only take white or white enough people at Univision. Look at Miss Venezuela and Gisele. Do you not think there is a reason Salma left Mexico? She was never a star there like she claimed.
@V4Real may have been joking but that doesn’t make her wrong. She is making the point that he does not look like someone who is 100% Apache or Navajo. He also does not look like someone who is 100% Spanish or German either.
get some historical context please. lets remember the indigenous people of the americas were around before there was a mexico. the same native tribes who populated northern mexico also populated what we know as the american southwest, ie, ‘Native Americans’. during the period of this film the american southwest was still only a few years in the possession of the US, until 1848 it was part of the mexican empire.
I believe the joke is more on the term ‘Indian,’ since obviously he doesn’t look like he’s from India while he’s in character (or in real life), which in that case is poking fun at noted racist Christopher Columbus, which feels very politically correct. Or maybe I’m just projecting.
Mexican empire????? Lets see, the Spanish held Mexico as part of the Spanish empire, and the French took Mexico from the Spanish and made it (along with much of the US west of the Mississippi River) part of the French empire (remember the Louisiana Purchase?), then Antonio de Padua María Severino López de Santa Anna y Pérez de Lebrón drove the French incursion out, but Mexican empire??? I think not.
I don’t think it’s too offensive…although this movie probably won’t be huge hit because all of Depp’s big hits are very child friendly and this movie is geared towards a more mature audience right?
And also, Depp has lost a lot of starpower/box office pull recently. The Rum Diary bombed and Rango was a very, very modest success.
Dark Shadows was actually basically a bomb given it’s high marketing budget and everything, and plus Depp had the benefit of Tim Burton, 3D effects, etc. to draw audiences to the film and they still didn’t go.
His last hit outside Pirates of the Caribbean involved Angelina Jolie, someone else with big box office draw given the right circumstances (and tourist was more about her than him..she’s suspense/action/thriller)
Pirates IV was not a hit in the US and the one with Angelina more or less tanked as well. He hasn’t had a hit in the US since Alice.
Did you notice HBC was in the trailer? That made me LOL. I wonder how they will do as a team without Timmy?
This Native American won’t be spending a cent on this craptastic film.
This Native American is undecided…but leaning toward agreeing with you…
I think this Native American is totally with you, Gracie.
This American Indian is in agreement. Won’t be spending money on this one. It gets tedious and embarrassing watching people bastardize your culture for entertainment.
A sincere question…
Native American culture isn’t really discussed at all in mainstream American culture. Do you think something like this would encourage kids and adults alike to look into it a little more? Read about what the REAL meaning is behind the symbolism, rituals, and face painting? Sometimes it takes an outreach of some kind to spark a broader interest in the general public. Usually if something is hot in pop culture, you tend find more factual historical programs created for other outlets that explore the source material.
This native won’t be going either.
There are a lot of Native American blogs full of book reviews, movie reviews, and cultural commentary. You could take a look at their opinion, but all those that I’ve seen seem pretty united in the view that untrue representations of Native Americans in particular, who have hardly any TRUE representations in the history of UF popular culture, always seem to do more harm than good.
Put me down as another ndn in agreement with you!
My husband is also Native American and I’m glad he didn’t see this trailer. I don’t find it offensive but then again I am not in a position to judge since I’m not native.
This Native Canadian won’t be seeing this movie.
Damn, Gillian looks HOT!
YES! She does.
Dang it took FOREVER to get through that trailer and seemed like minutes before depp even showed up.
In what I saw, there was nothing offensive. I dont get the outrage.
I agree.. the whole thing was a little boring.
Yeah I don’t see what’s offensive about it either. I’ll probably see it, it looks decent.
Agreed. What’s offensive? If this trailer offends anyone, they need their sensitivity levels checked. Getting through each and every day must be tough, because they must get “offended” (self-righteously so) at everything.
The outrage is that it’s kind of not ok for an actor to play someone of another race. You may remember the flap when Robert Downey Jr. did it? It’s why black face is no longer acceptable. And since Johnny Depp is not NA, he is, in fact, playing another race here. Kinda not cool. And I’m not in any way thin skinned or easily offended.
Actually, Depp IS part Native American.
Tropic Thunder is NOT the reason why Black Face is not ok. Lol
IIRC most black people gave RDJ a thumbs up for his performance in Tropic Thunder. Mainly because he was making fun of him as a white dude playing a black dude, and also because it was a clever comedy. Don’t know about Depp here, to me he is making lots of mediocre movies, gets stinking rich from it and then he starts behaving like a dick in his private life.
I don’t either. It’s not enough to just be offended anymore. Now they’re trying be to offended with simply anticipating the offense.
“Nothing’s happened yet…but it might and I’m going to go ahead and start being offended.”
I’m over this website and the idiots who frequent it.
I’ll get outta the way and let the offended get started being offended. Geesh!
You are absolutely right.
BTW, I worked on this film here in New Mexico, and I can tell you that Johnny Depp did nothing “offensive” and was embraced by the Native American community here. He did his research and based his look not only on the “I Am Crow” painting but also a statue at the ABQ airport. So this whole “I’m offended” is ridiculous.
I’m pretty offended by how awful this movie looks. Holy special effects dependency, Batman.
Shouldn’t it be a franchis for Armie Hammer? Consider, you know it is about the Lone Ranger, and he isn’t even on the cover, and barely was in the trailer. I find this movie highly irritating. I was hoping when it was in developemental hell, over the budget, that it wasn’t going to be made. Unfortunatley we get this garbage. I’m pretty sure there are Native American actors that are more than just quarter blood, considering we saw it in the trailer. I’m more offended that it got made, more so then Depp being Tonto. Also he is a method actor, I’m afraid how he was on set and thru this production. I’m actually disappointed with Gor Virbinski and Disney to even make this movie.
I don’t find it offensive. I just don’t feel an actual Native American portraying one equates doing “brown-face.” He has seemed passionate about this part of himself and as a big advocate on many issues, I doubt he’d do something he felt was in poor taste when it comes to that.
ITA, he is a Native American actor after all.
Agreed. I see nothing offensive nor would he do anything offensive. People are so overly sensitive these days, it’s lameeeeee.
I don’t know why any Native Americans would be offended. In the film, Tonto is The Lone Ranger’s equal, not just a companion and yes man. And the film is narrated by Tonto.
Because how he potrays Toto is full of lazy clichés and has little to do with the culture of any real native american tribe.
Maybe because “tonto” means “dumb”?
yea, but one of the best lone ranger lines is actually tonto’s line: ‘what do you mean WE, pale face?’
i’m sick of depp-and i was one of his original fans-benny and june, gilbert grape, etc.
i can’t see him as his character anymore. boring. over exposed thanks for that disney stuff [which i liked, the FIRST POTC that is.]
How in the HELL is Johnny Depp a “native american” actor????? Here is his quote from last year…
‘I guess I have some Native American [in me] somewhere down the line. My great-grandmother was quite a bit of Native American, she grew up Cherokee or maybe Creek Indian. Makes sense in terms of coming from Kentucky, which is rife with Cherokee and Creek.’
What does “quite a bit of” mean? Not full native american. Maybe She is 3/4, maybe 1/2 but that makes him somewhere aroiund 1/16th (around 6%). Now tell me, he does not even know the heritage of this native lineage and if he gave 2 shits about it, he’s rich enough to hire a genealogist so he can get his story straight. They should have hired a real native american…
He said he might be Cherokee or Creek? Wow, those are two entirely different Nations. And in terms of history, they technically might still be at war with one another. Man, he needs to do some research. lol (Written by a part-Muscogee (Red Stick Creek) woman who also has a tiny bit of Cherokee on one side.)
Oh, and I won’t be watching this movie.
I thought he looked like he’s in a metal band, I don’t think kids will equate over the top theatrical make-up with the real First Nations experience- they are pretty sophisticated viewers.
what about an african american woman playing a stereotypical mammy? or an asian woman playing a stereotypical submissive geisha? a stereotype is a stereotype and it’s even worse when somebody of another race is embodying that stereotype. i’m pretty sure johnny depp identifies as white. he!!, i have white and hispanic ancestry but i still consider myself to be black. lets be real.
Except that to his mixed peers he doesn’t look 100% white. He looks mixed to me, always has.
It’s like the hair dresser said to me in Alabama when I was visiting once…
“You have beautiful cheekbones are you part Injun”
“Thank you, technically I am. My mom is half Indigenous Mexican.”
Yes, I cringed when I heard “Injun” but what can you do?
I actually identify as “White Hispanic” because I can’t be “Native American” since my North American blood comes from South of the border.
I could never be offended by Johnny with no shirt on. Please stop hating on him.
But seriously: I´m not Naitive American, so it´s not up to me to decide if this movie is offensive or not. If Naitive Americans say so, then it is, period.
Hmmmm…I think Depp is doing—like Kaiser said—a Native American “brown-face” because his character seems to be someone who spend his time outdoor while…well, shirtless. Make sense and nothing offensive, IMO.
Have you ever re-watched any of the Disney “classics” they are SUPER offensive. I mean come one Peter Pan, the lyrics to the song “what makes the red man red,” alone are horrible.
This not so much.
I re-watched The Lady and the Tramp with a little cousin the other day and I almost wanted to fast forward the Siamese Cat bit… holy racist!
Or Dumbo, good God.
You know, I haven’t seen that since the first grade (nearing thirty years ago), and I bet I’d be APPALLED at that based solely on what I remember. Like Michael Scott doing Ping?
Yep the crows in Dumbo!
My sister-in-law is American Indian. She has early photos of her ancestors who went to Washington to sign some treaty or other, a group shot with many American Indians pictured.
Not one of them was wearing a damn CROW on his head, and none of them had painted faces.
But maybe they would have 150 years ago?
Apparently its his spirit animal. Lainey (or one of her friends) wrote a great article some time back about the details of his costume and what it all meant.
You know what it was one of Lainey’s friends who is part of the first nations, it was really interesting, she even broke down why some of it was not accurate to the tribe he was suppose to represent.
I’d love to read that article. Is there a link to it?
And for those who dont want to click this what she said about the crow:
Also not welcome are derogatory comments about the crow on his head. Spirit animals and totems are important throughout Native cultures and I’m superstitious and take that sh*t seriously. You have the zodiac, I have my spirit animal. The crow is most often a symbol of justice and partnership. It’s fitting then, yes? Comments about how “freakish” it is and references to Brandon Lee and/or The Crow undermine that there is an actual visual language being referenced, one that has ties to religious beliefs. I’m not asking you to like it, just respect it. And that’s probably the heart of the issue here. Tonto has never been a figure that commands respect, and now that Depp, a man who has exhausted his goodwill with many people, is trying to infuse some dignity into the character, it’s creating a mix of eye-rolling and cultural insensitivity. I know Depp can be tiring, but for once he’s putting his love of detailed costumes into something worthwhile—removing Tonto from the punchline and making him a proper character.
Thank you, what the Hell Is that crap on his head and face?
Yeah, don’t get the crow, except it looks very dramatic. I very seriously doubt Native Americans ever wore entire crows in mid-flap on their heads.
I’m pretty sure he borrowed the look from a painting and didn’t realize that the crow was flying behind the (painting) subject’s head, not *on* it
I find Johnny Depp offensive ALL the time, especially those ridiculous getups he wears all the time and the stupid trinkets hanging off him and the makeup. Yuck. He’s so phony and too desperate to appear ‘hip’. Gross.
People should stop being offended by every little thing!
I find it offensive when people like you start telling other people what they shouldn’t be offended about. If Native Americans find Depp’s portrayal of one of their own offensive, then yes it is offensive and who are you to say it isn’t?
Ok, then as an Irish woman I am from here on out declaring all depictions of drunk Irish men and nagging Irish women to be offensive.
Yeah, because you’re white.
Forget being offensive. It’s irritating to see yet another Johnny-Depp-in-costume movie. The shtick is getting old.
I think Johnny Depp has lost his way. He’s kind of a sellout. He’s busy shacking up with young pieces of Hollywood ass half his age, saying yes to infinite Disney sequels, and can’t seem to separate himself from his characters any more. He’s in his pirate/gypsy/Native American costume 24-7.
Yeah. Not really a fan any more.
His last good movie was Chocolat.
Ooh I forgot about Chocolat, such a great film and the only time I got the whole Johnny Depp appeal. He needs to really stop jocking Tim Burton and spread his wings a bit. And enough HUnter Thompson too…who gives a crap about some drug addled writer’s existential crisies (sp?)in the desert…in Miami….in car driving cross country! UGH!!
Yeah, I hated the Hunter Thompson movie too. Disappointed.
There has been lots of discussions about this, especially on the blog http://nativeappropriations.blogspot.ch/
I do find it offensive and I don’t think having a little bit of Cherokee blood or whatver somehow gives somebody a green card to play such a stereotypical chliched version of a native American.
I am sure he didn’t mean any harm but that doesn’t change that it is harmfull. Which he probably would have realized if he really did his research.
I know some native Americans think differently, but many agree that it is offensive (again, see the blog native appropriations).
Maybe so, and I guess I agree, but then, at what point are we all banned completely from representing any racial heritage in movies that isn’t white.
Maybe I’ve just not seen enough of the clip to see cliched performance. All I see is a lotta train wrecks.
I don’t know how you came to this conclusion from my comment. There’s nobody saying that there couldn’t be an native American character in the film, but why not make him authentic and original instead of inauthentic and clichéd? You could start at his appearance and consult an expert about how a man of his tribe would have looked like. But maybe (don’t know about that specific tribe) there wouldn’t have been any face paint or feathers involved and of course you can’t have a character in a hollywood film who’s supposed to be native American without those things, could you? Because then the viewers might actually realize that native American culture is divers and not every native American tribe used to live in Tipis, has totem poles, face paint and feather headdresses (actually I am not an expert, but I believe that not a single tribe exists that has all those characteristica). Its like having an “Asian character”, putting her in a qipao (Manchu-Chinese dress), give her bound feet (Han-Chinese), traditional Japanese Make-up and Indian jewellery and throwing in another dozen of inaccurate and lazy chlichés of Asia.
You could have people actually from that culture or ethnicity portraying the character in an honest and authentic way rather than a white guy playing the character in a cliched inaccurate way.
Yeah, it looks offensive. I agree with you, Kaiser. Honestly, I’m surprised this movie is being made. I’m wondering if “Tonto” is really supposed to be Native, or if it’s a Grey Owl sort of thing. I think you could play it right if you were careful. Then again, this movie is being produced by Jerry Bruckheimer (sp?), so I doubt they could be that clever.
May I ask where the offense line lies?
Black face in and of itself was not offensive – it was/is the eye-rolling, over-the-top behaviour which characterized it as offensive. It was the cartoonized portrayal which was offensive.
If I’m actor and have blue makeup on to portray an alien, am I offending aliens everywhere? If I’m a man and wear eye-liner does that offend homophobes? (it might, some of those right-wing Christians are scary).
I’m no fan of JD but I think this is less about him and his makeup and more about political correctness run amok.
Ruyana says her ancestors never wore crows or painted faces. Well, some did! Feathered headresses are still commonplace in ceremonial traditions as are painted faces.
If a character in a movie wears historical makeup and that’s offensive, well my goodness, it looks like it will be all aliens, all the time. *shudder*
As for the comments about Disney, um, Peter Pan was released in 1953. Times have changed.
There are plenty of examples of political incorrectness in the old cartoons. Anyone remember Bugs Bunny in black face?
ITA. I was thinking before that brown face here meaning only by the skin color. As for his make up and get up, I tend to agree with you, it’s more about political correctness run amok.
Jax, if Tonto were only participating in a ceremony for which face paint was traditional, then it would be an accurate portrayal. However, I think the point is that tribal members did not generally wear traditional, ceremonial garb while riding horses with the Lone Ranger. The choice to have him dressed as such for other situations in the film is portraying the character in a highly stereotypical way, and it’s fair to call that offensive. Do you see the distinction?
Perhaps the face-paint and intimidating head-dress are Tonto’s disguise? The Lone Ranger has to wear a mask, this is like Tonto’s mask. He IS an equal partner in this version. JD insisted.
Oh, I see now and I respect that. But it seems more inaccurate, poorly researched and therefore a silly character depiction and choice, rather than patently offensive.
you are beyond ignorant. exactly what part of black face looks like actual black people? the coal black skin that doesn’t occur in nature? the huge deformed, exaggerated lips? the huge dumb looking eyes? the ragged clothes? how DARE you. know what, next time take your uneducated, ignorant ass to google before you ever again even think about trying to determine what should and shouldn’t be offensive to other people, because you obviously don’t know what the f.!k you’re taking about. you need to shut it the f..k up. immediately.
1. Looks like Prirates of the CB, western style.
3. Yeah, Depp comes across as doing a Native caricature. They should have hired an actual Native. I know Depp is a tiny bit but it only comes across superficially.
I actually think Johnny Depp is overrated one demensional actor, save for his Captain Jack Sparrow character. Which is why those are his most successful films to date. HIs playing the typical Cherokee card so he can get away with playing a blantantly racist and stereotypical American Indian character is just his own narcissism. This American Indian will not be paying to see this film, even though it looks well done.
i wish i cared.
i so don’t.
I am only offended that Deppshit is still relevant as an actor. Just another movie of his (besides Pirates franchise Disney movie) that will be a box office flop.
Not offended-just looks like another cheese-fest action flick…with face paint.
But but but HBC is in it!?? Ugh-why Helena, why!?
I don’t really see it as offensive. It would have been great if they’d found a full Native American actor to play the role, but this is a mega budget production, and Depp has star power. He’s not as beloved as he was a few years ago, but his films have made a LOT of money for that studio.
I’m not that familiar with the source material, but to me it looks like a very specific character and not a commentary on all Native Americans of that time.
I agree but consider his latest movies bombed, Rango The Rum Diary Dark Shadows… I think this movie will bomb the movie budget is too high and not even Disney can save it
Rango didn’t bombed! it did twice the budget (or more) and it’s been considered for a sequel by the studio
Nor “Dark Shadows” in NYT Tim Burton says the movie did the budget back and a little more…those “unrealistics” numbers of some websites (U$150 millions? how?) were wrong!! According to Variety just cost over U$60 million and it did more than U$237 million WW
White Girl Opinion: what makes me uncomfortable about this film is that it’s a reboot (if you will) of The Lone Ranger! Not a historically accurate portrayal, not a movie about actual events, it’s a 1950’s TV show. Lets face it, the 50’s aren’t exactly known for cultural awareness. So it skeeves me out a bit.. I guess we shall see once the movie comes out.
Side note: I love Armie Hammer and would watch him read from the phone book.
What makes me uncomfortable about this film is that it’s a reboot (if you will) of The Lone Ranger! Not a historically accurate portrayal, not a movie about actual events, it’s a 1950’s TV show. Lets face it, the 50’s aren’t exactly known for cultural awareness. So it skeeves me out a bit.. I guess we shall see once the movie comes out.
Side note: I love Armie Hammer and would watch him read from the phone book.
Oh, I’m with you all the way! And I’m part Native American.
Thank you for reminding us this is based on a TV show (from the 50s, nonetheless!) and not any true story.
With PC and all, I don’t think it will be as offensive as the show might have been. They really will tone it down while still keeping true to the character.
We can Share Armie Hammer =)
Yes, it is ridiculous that in 2012 white actors are still cast to play persons of color in movies. Though this character Tonto is in itself a really old, stereotypical depiction of Indigenous Americans. To me, even if a Native American was playing this part, it would still be offensive. Hollywood has barely made any progress with regard to portraying non-WASP people. And yeah, I agree kids are going to see this and do impersonations of Tonto and still have ludicrous ideas about real life Native Americans. Hollywood you fail again.
Oh and you also fail when it comes to depicting persons with disabilities.
I also think it might be telling that he chose this time in his life to get close with members of the Comanche Nation. Possibly because he knew he was going to take flak for playing this role and doesn’t want to be labeled an insensitive race monger?
I’m 1/4 native american and live fairly close to a reservation in south dakota that many of my relatives live on. I’m going to have to do some recon on this and see if actual native americans find it offensive because I really don’t. Do I think it looks dumb? Definately.
Johnny Depp is as much Cherokee as I and about 75% of the people born in the South are. Seriously. He is not unique or special and his ancestry isn’t unusual. I’m a round-faced, green-eyed blonde and two of my sisters have straight black hair, lovely prominent noses and gorgeous cheekbones as did my mother who had Cherokee on her mother’s side. This whole “I’m a Cherokee because I think my great-grandmother was one” is all publicity for a movie. Which to me is even more gross than the “brownface” thing. He is such a poser.
whilst not disagreeing with you, may i point out that JD has always talked about his indian native ancestry. i remember when he was on 21 Jump street [the tv show] being sold as a teen heartthrob. his native american ancestry was played up alot as an explanation for his razor sharp cheek bones.
Since he hated being a teen heartthrob, or so he said, he played down all of that once he escaped the show. It came up from time to time, but this is the first time in over 20yrs that they are playing it up again. And i agree with you that it is being used to sell a movie.
Hi, LAK! I’ve been a longtime fan of yours but not a frequent poster.
Angelina Jolie and her mom used to claim the same thing, until it was found they were only doing it to be more easily sold to the public.
There are lots of articles on a phenomenon crudely called “white guilt”, I bet you’d find them interesting.
Hi Mina, thank you. I do enjoy our exchanges. I have read alittle around ‘white guilt’ but only as it partains to specific areas like colonialism and slavery, but not necessarily widely.I must confess that as a result of my upbringing which was as international as the Jolie Pitts though not as well appointed, I have a world view of most cultures so I tend to see these racial/Ethnic guilt as an intellectual exercise. What books,if any, would you recommend? Work has taken over my life at the moment, so I am going to post less, if at all. I wonder how we can exchange emails. Do you think CB would do it if we asked? 🙂
I’m still waiting for the phrases “political correctness gone mad” and “political correctness run amok” to run their course into obscurity.
Maybe instead people should start saying what those words actually mean, which is usually, “I lack understanding in this particular area of the human experience.”
I would argue that blackface in itself is offensive in that one is physically stealing an historically oppressed identity simply in order to mock it. If that’s not violating, let alone offensive, I don’t know what is.
YES! thank you. i’m so tired of people complaining about political correctness. it’s about being respectful of other people’s cultures and experiences. it’s about using respectful and affirming terminology, and not doing things that perpetuate sterotypes about certain groups of people. it’s about being an adult and realizing that, no, you’re not 3, and you should know how to exhibit some self control and basic manners by now. it’s about understanding that you SHOULDN’T articulate every single stupid thought that pops into your mind, because it could be offensive, insulting, and hurtful to other people.
i think trying to be respectful and polite to other people is way more important then saying whatever the he!l you want all day with no regard for anyone else.
Thats right, he showed up for that Native American parade the other day. He of course did that to push the movie. Anyway, that makeup Is stupid and offensive.
I’m a pirate. I was offended by his portrayal of pirates in Pirates of the Caribbean.
Hi shewolf! Good one! Made me laugh out loud.
LOL. Good one, shewolf! 😀 I think comment of the day goes to you.
Zorro called. He wants his shtick back!
I NEVER thought I’d say this but…I’m kind of over Johnny Depp . 🙁
It is offensive but no one is gonna say anything bc white men get away with everything. Just look at that British dude doing horrible yellow face in Cloud Atlas, has anyone even mentioned how terrible that is?
Please don’t lump all “white” people together…we are not all alike…you would NEVER say all Black people are this way or all Hispanic people are that way…because that would be sterotyping and offensive…
I did not see anything offensive in kit opinion. However what I did see was Armie Hammer looking sexy and my shallow side came out and I only care about Armie and his sexy self. He is so painfully attractive to me. So tall…his mouth..ok..gotta go.
Ugh I know Armie is so handsome too HANDSOME I’d say Johnny will look dull next to him in the premieres!
I know someone working on this at ILM… yes it is still being filmed and internally being spoken of as a mess.
That doesn’t surprise me. If going by the trailer alone, the film *does* look like a mess.
Hasn’t there been problems with this movie the whole way through? It hasn’t had good karma the whole time.
I hope Johnny is classy.. because Jay Silverheels; born Harold J. Smith, a Canadian.. was a class act..
I agree! Depp has gone and made a fool of himself AGAIN!
This movie looks stupid and the so called “face” is offensive!! Gore,Jerry and Depp need to go back to the Pirate flims. Only thing he was good in.
@G My eyes teared from laughing so hard!
At some point Johnny Depp went from being hugely original to ridiculous. I’d like to see less costume, less pairings with Tim Burton and more ACTING.
I misread the article and thought Tom Hiddleston was in this. I want my money back!
And I really don’t expect Depp to pull off any sort of stellar performance as he seems to be permanently stuck in Jack Sparrow mode. You know, like when Sean Connery thought he was James Bond (only smellier in Depp’s case).
Helena Bonham Carter! <3
And Depp looked ridiculous.
First of all, those who performed in black face were jewish (today jews are considered white but they weren’t back then).
Jewish men were the ones doing black face. Why? It’s classic act of the oppressed doing the oppressing, trying to climb the ladder of success and trying to get the “white card” in order to gain privilege.
Second, most white Americans do not have Native American ancestry, in fact, you are more likely to have black ancestry which Johnny Depp has as well as his Native American heritage, but most people do not have Native ancestry.
Third, it seems like most of you hate him because of him “dumping” the mother of his children ( although it seems to me Vanessa was the one wanting out) and say he cheated and has been with Hollywood starlets, which isn’t even true! It’s gossip that was so far from the truth.
Vanessa has moved on and is with another man and Johnny hasn’t been seen with ANY woman since they broke up.
And can people please stop talking about how he dresses! He has always dressed like that! What makes you think he will change his style and start wearing suits now!?
At least he is being true to himself.
Um, no Jews were not the only people doing black face, every white (and white ethnic) group did. It was hugely popular.
Black face was invented by Al Jolson, a jewish man.
Most black face professional performers were jews.
Nobody is here talking about his drunk cheating-gigolo behavior yet you come here to talk about it lol
Next time, scroll up and read all comments before you answer someone.
(Hint: read Darth’s comment up there 😉 and every other comment on a Johnny Depp thread).
No, it was after JD gave his support to Roman Polanski that I was totally over him. Since then, the hanky hanging from his pants, the stringy hair, the purposely torn hats and generally grubby look have helped me keep my resolve.
No Johnny Depp did not always dress like this.
For the majority of his life, especially in the recent decade, he has always dressed eccentrically.
Gee Adam Beach must have been unavailable.
No Native American actors available?
I’m guessing they needed a big name to attract movie goers and there aren’t many successful Native American actors (For reasons I think we all know).
Armie Hammer isn’t a big enough name to attract movie goers.
And since Johnny Depp has Native ancestry they probably thought it would be fine.
He just looks like a typical Raiders fan to me.
I really dont see anything to be offended by except for you referred to Tonto as Cherokee, like they are all indians. Tonto was the son of a Pottawatamie chief. The Pottowatamies split into 2 tribes, Osage and Chippewa (sp?)the white and black stripes dont have to do with skin color they refer to these 2 tribes Im sure..the Pottowatamies also were known for holding special objects sacred which is where the crow on his head comes from, they also wore elaborate head dresses, im sure there is some kind of symbolisim “Tonto” associates with the crow. They went to war with the tribe I am of, the Iroquoius. Saying he is Cherokee is like saying California is America.
I’m half Choctaw, grew up in a very Native community, and I’ll probably watch this movie out of curiosity. Yes, the costume is outrageous, but white hero types tend to look just as ridiculous in their costumes.
I can understand why they used Depp, because his features have some Native characteristics and he’s a huge draw. Casting him is practical, and he’s a great actor, so I’m ok with it. Would I have preferred to see an actual Native actor? Hells yes, but the only one with any draw who isn’t too old is Taylor Lautner, and his acting hurts me.
As for the whole “brownfacing” thing, at least Johnny has a tiny bit of Native blood. You know who they could have casted and put in brown face? Tom Cruise. Now THAT would offend me.
Honestly, if the character does wind up making a mockery of Native cultures, I’m kinda glad that it’s not a “real” Native American that has to embarrass himself onscreen.
You definitely have a point but why does the money always have to come first? Get a real Native actor to nail it, make it brilliant and people will pay the money to see it. If it’s an incredible movie with a little known Native actor, people will continue see it even if it has to have a indie/cult following to start with.
Adam Beach is First Nations or more specifically Anishinnabe he was in Windtalkers and Flags of our Fathers, Law & Order SVU – he is an amazing actor and contributes his free time to Aboriginal youth in our community.
Adam Beach also is hot hot hot, in my opinion.
I know people love love love to talk about what an amazing actor Johnny is, but sorry I’m not seeing it. Outside the Pirates films I don’t see him making bold choices or mixing it up or doing anything really interesting. I find most of his performance the exact same. I think the same with RDJ. He is still playing the same character. Such a shame too.
I think this film was yet another excuse for Johnny to dress up. And I like him. I think he seems like a nice guy. But looking at his body compared to a couple of other male stars his age and his status.. well Johnny is not faring that great. I never thought this was a good idea. Mainly because it was so long ago and unless people go to get a blast from the past. I don’t know why anyone would care that much.
This Native American Artist is the inspiration for the Tonto’s Look
And this is what Depp says about the crow and his look:
The actor, 48, told Entertainment Weekly he was actually inspired to update Native American Tonto’s look after seeing a painting by the artist Kirby Sattler.
“It just so happened Sattler had painted a bird flying directly behind the warrior’s head. It looked to me like it was sitting on top,” he told Entertainment Weekly. “I thought: Tonto’s got a bird on his head. It’s his spirit guide in a way. It’s dead to others, but it’s not dead to him. It’s very much alive.”
“The whole reason I wanted to play Tonto is to try to [mess] around with the stereotype of the American Indian that has been laid out through history, or the history of cinema at the very least — especially Tonto as the sidekick, The Lone Ranger’s assistant,” Depp explained. “As you’ll see, it’s most definitely not that.”
YEah, I was thinking that everything Depp does is arty — let’s be real — practically all his fictional characters are over-the-top and he’s really fearless and way-creative with his costuming for each one.
So he should get some allowance for being the artist that he is. However, it’s still weird in this more enlightened (supposedly) age for casting people to make the decision to have a non-native play a native. That is what makes it offensive.
This movie looks ridiculously stupid from the get go. Hollywood executives wonder why no one’s going to the movies anymore. Really?
Choctaw here. Won’t be watching.
The Lone Ranger and Tonto suddenly found themselves surrounded by a group of hostile First Nations Activists.
“Looks like we’re in trouble”, says the Lone Ranger.
Tonto turns and looks at him, and says, “What do you mean ‘We’, white man?” as Johnny rips off his shirt sleeve to show off his tattoo of Geronimo
Oh I get offended very easily, but I found nothing particular offensive about the trailer. I get the gist…
The advent of the steam locomotive opened the entire country to commerce and travel. Who controls the rails, controls the country. Corruption ensues and the Native peoples are murdered to take their land and the robber barons take control. There has to be one honest man in the bunch. The Lone Ranger.
Good story line. Yeah, it looks like Wild Wild West, but I can only hope the writing is better. Wild Wild West wasn’t a bad movie, just mediocre writing. Oh and Will Smith. That was a problem too. *LOL*
Seriously though? Why does America allow for White Iowa boys, or Black Georgia boys or Latin California boys to be “discovered” but Native boys never even get the consideration? Much less be in the game with as much time in and star power as Depp?
It’s time for this kind of “oh it’s okay” thinking to stop.
It’s not okay. There are damned awesome Native actors out there with stories to tell. Why can’t I have them too?
Thaaaank youuuu!! I’ve always wondered why Hollywood does this.
There ARE awesome Native actors out there, why dafuq choose Johnny Depp?
Am I the only one offended by how many people are being shot in a movie they are marketing to families? Just like with those Pirates movies, the first one has a scene where the butler answers the door and a pirate shoots him point blank in the face. But heaven forbid kids see a boob.
This is offensive from the get-go: “tonto” means “stupid.”
This Mexican/Cherokee will not be watching.
Wait.. wasn’t the make up inspired by a portrait, not any actual historical face paint Native Americans used? How is the use of it in this film offensive to NA when it’s more of an homage to a painting? This actually reminds me more of The Crow, and I think it’s more offensive to Brandon Lee if the movie ends up sucking.
I don’t find this offensive in the least, they don’t seem to be portraying Tonto in any obvious demeaning way. And as for what ethnicities are played… this is an issue with the industry, not this movie specifically. And one movie wouldn’t change anything–it really seems like people only get offended by that stuff when it’s pointed out. If it really bothers you, you should know this is an everyday occurrence… people of different ethnicities are passed off for other ethnicities all the time.
And I don’t think Hollywood necessarily cares that much, especially for bit parts or background people. Close enough is good enough.
I dunno, looks more like its a campy action flick. I think it’s a big buget movie and they wanted to have star power. The primary goal of 90% of movies is to make money. If the point of this movie was historical accuracy I’d be offended by Depp playing the character but this isn’t a historical movie … it’s a campy action flick off a silly 50’s tv show.
I have bigger things to be offended by (like how all of MY people are always terrorists or hookers in movie and tv shows … but I got over it) and a movie will rarely be one of them.
I don’t see anything offensive about the trailer…on the contrary, I was expecting a parody and this look more serious and cool
And Johnny seems to be a lot less “over the top” than in his Jack Sparrow performance. That’s good for a change!
Depp wears over the top makeup for just about every part he does.
Who here got their dander up for the Gingers of the world when he played a red-headed “Mad Hatter” in WhiteFace makeup?
Oh yeah… no one.
Oh and asking Hollywood to be “accurate”? Bwahahahaha!
he is playing a stereotypical native american caricature and it’s beyond offensive and willfully ignorant. a stereotype is a stereotype, it doesn’t matter who is portraying it. if an african american actress were playing a stereotypical mammy in a film, it would still be a stereotypical potrayal. i believe johnny identifies as white anyway, so having native american ancestry ::really:: doesn’t give him carte blanche to do whatever he wants with native american imagery. i am black with white and hispanic ancestry. does having white ancestry mean i have license to portray every redneck, hillbilly stereotype of white people that has ever existed? johnny’s part native ancestry doesn’t absolve him of anything.
d what the h is that dead bird he is wearing on his head? i read somewhere that native americans have never even worn dead crows on their heads. ::eyeroll:: and what is that atrocious peeling, serial-killer, black and white makeup he’s wearing? yet another inauthentic mockery of native american dress? i can’t with these idiots, meaning johnny and whoever else around him approved of this and the idiots on this board who can’t stop complaining about not getting to say whatever dumb s comes their minds anymore because they might actually have to think of someone else’s feelings.
and what the he!! is that dead bird he is wearing on his head? i read somewhere that native americans have never even worn dead crows on their heads. ::eyeroll:: and what is that atrocious peeling, serial-killer, black and white makeup he’s wearing? is that ridiculous face paint yet another inauthentic mockery of native american dress? i can’t with these idiots: meaning johnny and the other buffoons on the film who didn’t check him or check each other before this offensive caricature of a native american ever made it to the screen and the ass holes on this board who can’t stop complaining about “political correctness” and the mere thought of not getting to say whatever dumb sh.t comes into their minds. having no regard for anyone but yourself is SO much better then being considerate of people’s feelings and respecting their cultures! so, so much better.
Educate yourself. The face paint is accurate. There are lots of Native Americans who not only wore feathers on their heads, but birds. Rather than give you the link, just google “Native Americans birds on head” and click on the first result–pictures from the Library of Congress. Note the face paint too.
What do you think, that the costumers on set didn’t do their research?
Where I am from, Johnny Depp, as well as a lot of other supposedly ‘white’ Americans, would not be considered white.
Johnny Depp, with my foreign European eyes, does not look white, he looks Native American to me.
And what I have noticed is that a lot of white Americans would not be looked at as white in my country.
It’s really interesting actually.
Actors portray people of different ethnic backgrounds other than their own ALL THE TIME. that is not offensive. If the get-up or portrayal of the character is inaccurate/under researched/offensive…okay, fine. To say that someone of Johnny Depp’s coloring can’t portray a NA and is offensive…not true.
Lets have Charlie Sheen stop playing white guys and Zoe Saldana stop being “that African American/Black chick” because, you know, its offensive.
Actualy Charlee Sheen is a white guy.
I’m so confused. He looks like a white guy to me.
Charlee Sheen’s (real name Carlos Estevez) grand father was from Galicia, North of Spain. Martin Sheen and his progeny have european roots.
I specifically mentioned ethnicity not what someone looks like..Charlile Sheen’s real name is Carlos Estevez, brother of Emilio, son of Ramon Estevez, AKA Martin Sheen.
In Europe nobody call himself a white guy, everyone identifies himself in a nationality identity.
It’s hard to do anything these days without offending someone. Shakespeare’s plays were first performed with men playing the female roles. At least we’re not doing that anymore.
A goto on my all-time top five
A sad and pretentious parody of… himself
A hideous Hollywood “Injun” throwback
What ate Gilbert Grape?
Kaiser. I normally love your witty and snipey comments at celebrities. This time I think you are being WAY too sensitive in regards to perceptions of American Indian sensitivities. You are playing up to the little small percentage of whiny brats who try to deem everything offensive or “racist£, when there is nothing about it that is.
Good grief what is the world coming to. We are really bound to this silly and over-exaggerated sense of political correctness that goes over and beyond what can be termed as common sense.
i’m tired of the a!s holes on this board who can’t stop complaining about “political correctness” and the mere thought of possibly stopping to think before they whatever dumb, offensive, and ignorant sh.t that comes into their minds. having no regard for anyone but yourself is SO much better then being considerate of people’s feelings and respecting their cultures! so, so much better. and having the unmitigated NERVE to tell other people that they shouldn’t be offended by stereotypical and ignorant portrayls of THEIR culture is not rude and completely out of line at all! they should “just get over it”! even if inauthentic imagery like this influences the general populace to think that they all actually live in tepees, do rain dances, and wear war paint and feathered headresses all the time!
Thank-you for your elegant commentary. We use a National Film Board short film in our Anti-Racism workshops,”For Angela” it is a simple story about a mother and daughter waiting for a bus.. in discussion with the boys who influanced the film, they said it was what they learned from the media and movies which was stereotypical images or colonial imaginary that perpetuates a imagined inferiority that continues to marginalize Aboriginal people, this imagery suggests that Hollywood has a long way to go in realizing we are human not painted images, frozen in time.
Min89, your complete lack of knowledge of Native American culture is really annoying. You leap in with rants about this, and you don’t know what you’re talking about regarding this movie. The irony of your comments would be hilarious if it wasn’t SO annoying. Please, just stop trying to “lecture” everyone in your attempt to sound intelligent. It’s not working.
I’m gonna go see it, I don’t know what the fuck all you guys are going on about.
I don’t find this offensive @ all. Why create controversy when there isn’t one?
I am far more offended by the general lack of discussion and depiction the first Americans than I am of any particular discussion or depiction of them.
When I saw the initial stills of this movie I was a little concerned about Johnny Depp’s makeup and costume.
“Tonto” does indeed mean dumb in colloquial Spanish, but here I think it means “mute” (which is what dumb used to mean in the olden days of yore). Tonto doesn’t say much in any version of the Lone Ranger, so this sort of makes sense.
I have no problem with Depp playing Tonto, because it’s a movie, they needed a star, and he seems to have enough American Indian blood to satisfy most people. Armie Hammer looks very handsome as the Lone Ranger and I hope this will make up for his last two crap films.
What happens if Johnny Depp decided to play the part of a blind man / lame man in a film? Would that be considered offensive as well, because he wished to portray a worthy cause and so did his part on screen…?? (NO offense meant to our handicapped brothers and sisters by the way… each of us are in some ways, and that would be a different topic 🙂
When an actor plays terrorist / murderer / rapist… should he also hold a record of having done any of those crimes, a “real life experience” certificate for him to be given that part?? He sure does not also become any one of them after he has played one of them, does he…??
WHY would a portrayal of art… basically a depiction of a character in art form, become so sinful / offensive?? Isn’t there something called “freedom in art forms”?? Besides, this is just a teaser… not an end-to-end of the movie, to come up with a jurisdiction on offense, from a few seconds of an hour+ art really…
Sorry if I came across rude folks… just so bemused! 🙂 As we can see, Johnny Depp is simply “playing” a character on screen… and that is NOT his real life documentary that we are seeing… Peace folks…
Offensive? I don’t know, ridicoulus maybe.
You people are so ridiculous…what is a real native suppose to look like? Real natives are distinguished by “certificate of blood” or dog papers-genocide tools imposed by Americans that natives now use to persecute their own. Native/indigineous people are Mexican, African, Asian, etc. again, what are natives suppose to look like? Why are white people allowed to embody any thing, idea, character and its celebrated. But if your native- you have to be authentic. Johnny Depp is native. He has been adopted into a native family which is an honor and he is now part of that family and tribe to which they belong. THAT is what being native is all about. Beng native isn’t about where you live or what you look like … It’s about belief in your connectedness to the earth and its people
This Native with her CIB papers, that makes me authentic, will be going and supporting a member of my people who is boldly trying to redefine what society tells us is “our” story. He an artist and this is his art. Is it historical….wasn’t suppose to be its a story.
Thank you, Kathryn. You’ve said all that needs to be said.
“What is a real native supposed to look like?” Nail on the head.
If he’s in a weird costume, so is the Armie. Let’s hope that what matters, the portrayal of a human being, comes off with sensitivity not just to an ethnic group but to all people.
I remember watching The Lone Ranger on our little b&w tv when I was a kiddie in the 1950s. I thought TLR and Tonto were equal partners already. Of course, I was a tad fuzzy about what a ranger was. Liked Tonto’s clothes better. Can’t remember much else about the show.
My first thought when seeing the picture above, though, was that this time around – Tonto’s disguise was a heck of a lot better than TLR’s. Tonto could definitely wander around the mall unrecognized when he took off the headgear and face paint. But TLR’s small black mask isn’t much of a step up from Superman’s famous glasses that magically made him unrecognizable as Clark Kent.
Ok, I have some Native American ancestors in my family too but that doesn’t make me Native American any more than my ancestors getting off a boat from England 200 years ago makes me English.
I think it’s probably offensive, I mean it’s Disney, they really do not have a good record regarding cultural sensitivity. Pocahontas, anyone?
My wife is part Native American. Does that mean she should be offended? I’m part a Irish. When a person who’s mostly French plays an Irishman, should I be offended? Hell, you can’t swing a dead cat without hitting someone that’s not part Cherokee in this county. Should they all be offended? Remember, they are called “actors” for a reason. Get over it.