Matthew McConaugheyIs Matthew McConaughey the right man to be Johnny Depp's "kemosabe"?

By now, you've probably heard that Johnny Depp is attached to star in Jerry Bruckheimer's 'The Lone Ranger' reboot -- but he's not playing the titular hero. Instead, the convention-flouting actor, who has said he has Cherokee and Navajo blood in his heritage, is taking on the role of the Ranger's Native American sidekick Tonto.

With the 'Ranger' rumor mill heating up, a "guy who hears reliable things" now tells Hollywood Elsewhere that Matthew McConaughey is the leading candidate to be Depp's mask-wearing "kemosabe." Though McConaughey hasn't headlined an action flick since the 2005 flop 'Sahara,' his casting would seem to fit the light vibe of the film, which is being produced by Bruckheimer and written by 'Pirates of the Caribbean' scribes Terry Rossio and Ted Elliot.

Can't picture the Ranger as a washboard-abbed surfer dude? Here are some other actors we'd like to see saddle up for the role.

Matthew McConaugheyBy now, you've probably heard that Johnny Depp is attached to star in Jerry Bruckheimer's 'The Lone Ranger' reboot -- but he's not playing the titular hero. Instead, the convention-flouting actor, who has said he has Cherokee and Navajo blood in his heritage, is taking on the role of the Ranger's Native American sidekick Tonto.

With the 'Ranger' rumor mill heating up, a "guy who hears reliable things" now tells Hollywood Elsewhere that Matthew McConaughey is the leading candidate to be Depp's mask-wearing "kemosabe." Though McConaughey hasn't headlined an action flick since the 2005 flop 'Sahara,' his casting would seem to fit the light vibe of the film, which is being produced by Bruckheimer and written by 'Pirates of the Caribbean' scribes Terry Rossio and Ted Elliot.

Can't picture the Ranger as a washboard-abbed surfer dude? Here are some other actors we'd like to see saddle up for the role. -- By Tom DiChiara

Who Should Be the Ranger'?

    Matthew McConaughey

    Though the 'Ghosts of Girlfriends Past' star hasn't headlined an action flick since the 2005 flop 'Sahara,' his buff frame and adeptness at physical comedy could make him the perfect hero in what is likely to be a comedy-action take on 'The Ranger.'

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    Christian Bale

    Before the McConaughey rumors surfaced, Bale was thought to be the frontrunner. He proved believable as a frontier badass in the Western '3:10 to Yuma' -- and he's certainly got what it takes to carry a franchise (see 'The Dark Knight,' 'Terminator Salvation). But a third franchise could be too much, plus the lighter tone of the material might not play to Bale's brooding strengths.

    Christian Bale

    Orlando Bloom

    Sure, he's a bit boyish to play the battle-scarred Ranger. But the Bloom-Depp pairing worked wonders in 'Pirates of the Caribbean' -- who's to say it wouldn't work again?

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    Owen Wilson

    He brought the funny as a quick-witted, quick-drawing gunslinger in the anachronistic Westerns 'Shanghai Noon' and 'Shanghai Knights' -- and he could definitely do the same here.

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    Brad Pitt

    He won raves for his turn as outlaw Jesse James in the amply titled 'The Assassination of Jesse James by the Coward Robert Ford.' And, though that film was heavy on the drama and light on the action -- Pitt's proven he can handle everything from action to drama to comedy with equal prowess.

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    Robert Downey Jr.

    Like Pitt, Downey can tackle any genre with ease -- and has shown to be especially expert at delivering the wry, deadpan one-liner. But like Bale, he already has one definite and another potential franchise on his hands with 'Iron Man' and 'Sherlock Holmes.' Still, we'd watch RDJ in pretty much anything. Bring it on.

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    Kiefer Sutherland

    We doubt we'll ever see the '24' badass as the Ranger, but we can dream. Just the thought of Jack Bauer beating some sense into Wild West baddies has us cracking up. Plus, it'd be fun to count the number of times he screams, "Dammit, Tonto!"

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