Verbinski cooked up the story himself, but gave the writing job to John Logan. He will direct the movie as a nice relaxing break from adapting Bioshock. Some of us do yoga, some of us direct Paramounts "most ambitious star-driven entry into animation."
The effects will be handled by ILM, who did such brilliant work on Pirates' Davy Jones. According to Verbinski himself, Rango will be using top-notch CG techniques "that will allow us to capture and translate every aspect of Johnny's performance, using it to drive the computer-generated character in a way that has yet to be seen in an animated feature." This sounds kind of terrifying to me -- Depp's household pet is left unspecified in the article, and I now have a vision of a dog or a turtle with Depp's face. Or they are going the Angelina Jolie / Beowulf route.
All joking aside, I do think another Depp and Verbinski pair-up can only yield good results -- and it will be fun to see (hear?) Depp do more voice work. The movie starts production this January, and is slated for a March 2011 release.