Southern Utah is no stranger to the silver screen. Production crews routinely set up shop in the national parks and national monuments to capture our desert beauty on camera. Iconic films like Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade have memorable scenes that where shot in Southern Utah. Disney recently filmed the exterior scenes of John Carter almost exclusively in Utah. And this year Disney will be releasing another movie that was partly filmed in Southern Utah, The Lone Ranger.
The Lone Ranger is a remake of a 1960s television and film series. The action takes place in the old west, at the time of the expansion of the railway system. The protagonist becomes an archetypal Robin Hood of the West, always wearing a mask, and never revealing his identity. The film will star Armie Hammer as the Lone Ranger and Johnny Depp as his American Indian friend, Tonto. The Lone Ranger promises to be a summer blockbuster.
To capture the feel of the old west, Disney filmed in Arizona, New Mexico, California, and, of course, Southern Utah. The location scouts chose to shoot in areas surrounding the town of Moab and in Monument Valley National Monument. Moab is famous for its slick rock landscape, and for its proximity to two national parks: Arches and Canyonlands. A cavalry charge scene was filmed in Professor Valley, near Moab.
Monument Valley is a collection of giant monoliths that rise from the red desert floor. It provides excellent scenery for compilation shots, and railway scenes. The national monument straddles the Utah/Arizona border and filming crews worked on both sides of the border.
We at the Lodge at Red River Ranch love seeing our backyard on the big screen. We hope that you are inspired to come visit “the old west” in real life.