Jerry Newcombe

For good or ill (often for ill), Hollywood wields enormous influence on the culture. But we the people often fight back when they go too far in their anti-Christian and amoral ways.

The Hollywood Reporter (9/10/13) notes that the next Johnny Depp Pirates movie has been postponed. Included in the article was the idea that Disney was potentially skittish about releasing the movie so soon after the major failure of The Lone Ranger with Johnny Depp.

So Johnny Depp then is to blame for The Lone Ranger doing poorly? Why did the movie fail? One answer is: It was anti-Christian and anti-American---contrary to the popular radio and TV series that propelled the Lone Ranger and Tonto on the national scene.

Dr. Ted Baehr is a missionary to Hollywood. Year after year, his research shows that by-and-large the anti-Christian movies do poorly at the box office, whereas the well done movies with pro-Christian content do very well. (All things being equal.) I consider him a friend, so I asked Ted for some comments on why The Lone Ranger failed. He sent me some great stuff.

Ted Baehr and co-author Tom Snyder note in a recent article: “Year in and year out, the Christian Film & Television Commission® and Movieguide®’s annual study of the movie box office figures proves that wholesome family-friendly movies and inspiring movies with Christian faith and values, no graphic foul language, sex, or nudity, and strong conservative, patriotic elements make the most money, especially when compared to movies with Anti-Christian, Anti-American, leftist values and abundant foul language or explicit sex and nudity.”

They wrote about this film in particular: “Why did the Lone Ranger ride into theaters only to fail miserably at the box office? What went wrong with the beloved hero and role model that multiple generations grew up watching? A few will blame the director, others will blame the marketing team, and some might just believe the competition was too tough. What few are pointing out is the obvious fact that Disney’s THE LONE RANGER is not a movie for kids.”

They note that, “Only 16 percent of the moviegoers were under the age of 18. Disney shouldn’t be surprised at all by these numbers for several reasons. The Lone Ranger character was created to be a role model for children. And even if Disney’s version provides some role model material, it’s presented in a world that is too gruesome and violent for young children to handle. The fact that THE LONE RANGER garnered a PG-13 rating should have warned Disney of its fate.”


Jerry Newcombe

Dr. Jerry Newcombe is a key archivist of the D. James Kennedy Legacy Library and a Christian TV producer.