Mark Wahlberg gives his two cents on why The Lone Ranger flopped

Mark Wahlberg, 42, argues in a new interview with the Los Angeles Times that the media is against big budget films. “First and foremost, the media is targeting all these movies. There’s intense scrutiny on us, way more than before,” said the 2 Guns star about Jerry Bruckheimer, Johnny Depp and Armie Hammer‘s controversial claim that U.S. film critics were responsible for The Lone Ranger‘s poor box office numbers. Despite the star power of its two leading men and its budget of $250 million, the Gore Verbinski western earned less than $30 million when it opened to North American audiences in July. Producer Jerry Bruckheimer defended the film during an interview with Yahoo, claiming that critics focused too heavily on the film’s budget. “I think they were reviewing the budget and not reviewing the movie,” he said. “The audience doesn’t care what the budget is. They pay the same amount to see the movie whether it costs $1 or $20 million, so I don’t think that matters.”

However, Wahlberg claims the studios are also at fault for having their priority on marketing versus creating a distinctive film. “They are spending so much money to pull the wool over the audience’s eyes with these effects-driven movies,” he said. “It’s not like Jurassic Park where you saw something groundbreaking and innovative and said ‘Holy. I gotta see that.’ Every end-of-the-Earth movie kind of feels the same.” When asked to give his reason for The Lone Ranger‘s shortcomings, Wahlberg quipped: “They’re spending $250 million for two dudes on a horse? Where’s the money going?” ~Alfonso Espina

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Comments & Discussion

  1. Checkit • August 7, 2013 @ 4:19 PM

    Exactly $250 million for Lone Ranger..really? PLUS look at the other movies that came out at the same time.. Lone Ranger didn’t stand a chance.
    And the scene where Tonto steps off the ladder or whatever and walks onto the train and his step blows up..hmmm anyone remember Pirates when the boat was sinking as it was heading to the docks and he was at the tippy top and he stepped off the top of the sinking boat just in time to step with ease onto the dock and keep walking…think of a new cool move Gore.

    Just some things don’t work.

  2. Sal • August 7, 2013 @ 4:44 PM

    $250 is way too much for a movie. Actors and Actresses are being over paid. I have watched movies that are amazing with unknown actors/actresses and cost way less to make.

  3. Kris • August 7, 2013 @ 6:41 PM

    The movie just wasn’t good. Poor script, iffy performances and uneven pace….often times the best flics are the small budget films i.e. “The Way Way Back. Just because it is a big budget, doesn’t mean it is going to be good.

  4. Rita • August 7, 2013 @ 9:01 PM

    If the real Tonto was alive now, he’d be deeply insulted about how you portrayed him! I Don’t like the way you got him to narrate the movie! That Isn’t Tonto. In the original, he Didn’t narrate anything!
    Also the original Tonto was Kinder and this one wasn’t that much. Another thing is yes blame the Critics; they are NOT writing the Scripts, nor are they Producing/Directing the movie. I Know, most of the time what they say does not relate to, what the movie is all about. I rarely listen to them. So that leaves the fact that I, me and Lots other people go to see it becoz we see the Trailer, and if its a sequel we know a little about it. Also since when did the original Tonto wear a dead bird on his head?? That was just too gross! The action at the end was great, but the rest of it was OK. So thats why you kind of failed at the box office. This is where the fault lies: write a Better

  5. Philly • August 7, 2013 @ 11:55 PM

    I thought The Lone Ranger was an excellent movie, it was exciting to watch it on the big screen even though I never watched it on tv, Johnny Depp played an amazing role as Tonto, Armie Hammer wasn’t bad as The Lone Ranger, but the 2 worked well together and made the movie happen, I watched the movie twice in theater and it will go in my collection once it’s on dvd.

  6. Snepts • August 8, 2013 @ 12:44 AM

    The Klinton Spilsbury version was much better.

  7. Sparky • August 8, 2013 @ 10:37 AM

    Let’s just say it, they made the Lone Ranger act like a retard! They wrote character like the Forest Gump of the western front and Tonto was his Jenny. The effects were awesome but the only good acting came from Depp but he couldn’t save a movie that was doomed after the first five minutes of being introduced to Hammer!

  8. Danielle • August 8, 2013 @ 12:48 PM

    I liked the movie and I loved the dead bird on Tonto’s head! Hilarious!! lol The Ranger could have been cast better I guess but I liked him ok by the end. I think the biggest problem for this movie is that it was a remake. People can’t seem to let the old stuff go and get their knickers in a knot when the new movie tries to do things a little differently making only nods to the original. Then of course there’s the whiners that “it was too close to the original that I knew exactly what would happen!” You can’t please everyone! Personally, if I’m going to see a remake I leave the old movie at the door and am open to a new interpretation of it and hope to enjoy it.

  9. Renee • August 9, 2013 @ 12:26 PM

    I love Johnny Depp. I have since Nightmare on Elm Street, but come on. Most of us knew this was a flop months before the movie even came out, and it had zero to do with the critics. Most of us are intelligent enough to take what critics say with a grain of salt. I have never seen or not seen a film based on what some stranger has said. The Lone Ranger, while a popular show in its day, is terrifically irrelevant now. No one can relate to it anymore. Granted there are reboots being made left and right of older franchises, but most are still fresh in the minds of the general public. They still have a foothold in popular culture. Not so with The Lone Ranger. Additionally, after seeing the trailers, could anyone tell what the devil the movie was even about??? It looked like an ignorant depiction of a Jack Sparrow-esque Native American in Wild Wild West with some gritty film filter and explosions. That was the most I gathered from the trailers. Disney is trying to create another POTC. Can’t happen because the trick of POTC was it was so unexpectedly clever. We’ve seen the strings now. Lightning won’t strike twice in the same place.

  10. Ralph • August 9, 2013 @ 1:06 PM

    I have not seen this movie and have no intention to pay to see this movie (wait till it comes out on cable). Here is my reasoning;
    When I first heard about “The Lone Ranger” I thought the Studios might have a shot if they did it right. Then I heard Johnny Depp was playing Tonto my thought was “WTF!! He is not First Nation! Who’s Lame-brained Idea was this?” After I saw pictures of Depp My first impression was “Blackface” (for tose who understand, explain it to those who don’t). When I saw the trailer I saw Depp, Looking like and Idiot, with a so-so one liner followed by generic expolsions and other action. Depp was in 95% of the trailer leaving me to wonder if they got the name right. I also thought this movie will tank. the critics rated the movie rated it higher than I thought they would.

  11. croky • August 9, 2013 @ 1:14 PM

    And then people support this guy when he asks Justin Bieber to stop smoking weed… lol

    Come on Mark, the movie is not good. I’ve seen it already not minding about “the critics” and “the media”, which I never mind. Get it over with, the movie is not that good. Please stop making excuses.

  12. HGWells1984 • August 9, 2013 @ 4:45 PM

    Based on the trailer and the marketing, I thought this was a movie about a guy with a dead bird on his head. Seriously, Tonto is supposed to be the sidekick to the Lone Ranger, not the main attraction. The studio must of freaked out and went all in on Depp, praying that he could somehow salvage the $250M they sunk into this movie.

  13. MovieGoer • August 10, 2013 @ 1:59 AM

    I didn’t read a single critic’s review going in and I was aware of the original series only because I watched re-runs on Sundays with my dad and brother when I was small. I was terribly disappointed – the re-make alternates between boring and ridiculous. Having seen almost every movie this summer, this is the only one I would have liked to get my money back (and maybe IM3 just because of the last 25 minutes).

  14. Alexander • August 11, 2013 @ 8:40 PM

    Okay so i haven’t read all the comments here so if I’m repeating a point previously stated I apologize. Maybe the reason why It was panned so widely as a bad movie is because IT IS a bad movie. Budget doesn’t make a movie good. You could have a big budget and a good movie, LOTR trilogy being a good example. Story, writing and acting has been sacrificed for the hook/hack tagline terrible acting and over the top effects! Granted sometimes YOU AS A CRITIC should know what your walking into. Pacific Rim is a great example cheesy dialogue and giant robots fighting monsters. Take it for what it is. The Lone Ranger however is a great example of studios being lazy and just re-hashing old outdated concepts and throwing them at the public like were idiots but have the nerve to complain when it doesn’t go over well? Johnny Depp wants to complain about it? Buddy, wake up and make another Benny and Joon, cut the cord between you and Burton and the 25 lbs of makeup you don for every movie you’ve made in the last ten years. Hollywood, churn out a good movie and be something good again. And if ya make a shit movie, don’t be surprised when people don’t like it. At the end of the day your entertainers and you make money off of us the viewing public, now if you want that money, like everything else you gotta earn it. Quality over Big budget any day my friends!

  15. Bill T • August 12, 2013 @ 1:18 AM

    The people I know who went to see it found it to be boring. Who cares how much they spent. Boring is boring.
    Don’t blame the critics for making a movie that people didn’t enjoy.

  16. J • August 29, 2013 @ 10:55 AM

    The movie gave extremely serious matters a passing nod and overdid the slapstick. Tonto would have been fine with it, but I’m not fine with making the Lone Ranger “wrong brother”.

  17. FroJoeKoolaid • August 29, 2013 @ 11:20 AM

    but the movie didn’t cost 20 million it cost 250 and Johnny Depp played Tonto. what the f*** was that all about? seriously. and the movie sucked

  18. Tom • August 29, 2013 @ 5:52 PM

    If they cut 1 hour of violence, and probably 100 mil out of budget ($250 mil for 2 1/2 hrs= $50 mil per half hour) and made it PG, I bet it would have done better. I saw mothers taking kids out of audience during the heart eating scene.

  19. Mackster • September 5, 2013 @ 11:36 AM

    The $250 million went to the overly long chase scenes with the train… Frankly that whole bit of the movie seemed to last far far to long. Even my kids got bored with it and asked when is this going to be over.

  20. Angelle • September 12, 2013 @ 12:24 PM

    Actually, it just wasn’t very good. (Yes, I saw it.)

  21. Ken Goldman • September 12, 2013 @ 3:25 PM

    How about taking some of that $250 million and investing in some good writers? Without a decent script even the best intentioned movie will suck. I find it amazing that this simple concept doesn’t occur to the film makers. If it isn’t any good on the page, it won’t be any good on the screen.

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