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'Lone Ranger' crew member dies on set

September 21, 2012|By Richard Verrier and Ben Fritz
  • Johnny Depp as Tonto and Armie Hammer as the masked man in "The Lone Ranger."
Johnny Depp as Tonto and Armie Hammer as the masked man in "The Lone… (Peter Mountain / Disney )

A crew member died on the set of Walt Disney Studios' big-budget film "The Lone Ranger," the Burbank studio said Friday.

"We regretfully confirm that a 'Lone Ranger' crew member has passed away after being taken to a local hospital. Our hearts and thoughts are with his family, friends, and colleagues at this time, and our full support is behind the investigation into the circumstances of this terrible event," Disney said in a statement.

The incident involved a diver who reportedly drowned while prepping a tank for an underwater shooting scene in the Los Angeles area, and did not occur during filming, the studio said. Disney is investigating the incident, the statement said.

The movie, directed by Gore Verbinski and starring Johnny Depp, has filmed in New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado and Utah and recently moved to Los Angeles.

"The Lone Ranger" has endured other incidents since production began earlier this year on the $200 million-plus movie, which is set to open next July.

In May, a stuntman was injured on set in New Mexico, according to local reports. Depp, who plays Tonto, has said he narrowly avoided injury after being thrown from a horse on the set and dragged 25 yards on the ground.

The Los Angeles County coroner's office said the crew member was a 48-year-old man who was cleaning a pool in Acton in northern Los Angeles County that was going to be used in the film. He appeared to have suffered a heart attack.

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