Johnny Depp Confirms Pirates 4, Tonto in Lone Ranger, Mad Hatter

So, er, I guess this means Johnny Depp won’t be playing The Riddler in “Batman Begins 3″, huh? Probably not, unless Johnny Depp doesn’t need to eat or sleep, because the man currently has his hands full with three major projects in the coming years. The biggest one of all, of course, is the fourth installment in the “Pirates of the Caribbean” films, where Depp has confirmed that he will return as Captain Jack Sparrow. Meanwhile, Depp will also be playing Tonto in Jerry Bruckheimer’s sure-to-be-massively budgeted “Lone Ranger” movie. But wait! If you thought two mega Disney movies was more than one man can bear, Depp will also be playing the Mad Hatter in Tim Burton’s version of “Alice in Wonderland”. Seriously, where does Johnny Depp find time to see his kids and sleep with his wife?

Variety has all the Johnny Depp news you can use:

Depp has agreed to reprise his role as Captain Jack Sparrow in a fourth “Pirates of the Caribbean” pic and play Tonto in a bigscreen adaptation of “The Lone Ranger,” both produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. He will also star as the Mad Hatter in Tim Burton’s version of “Alice in Wonderland.”

The roles come after Depp helped Disney earn a combined $2.6 billion at the box office with the three pics in the “Pirates” franchise, also produced by Bruckheimer.

“Alice in Wonderland,” skedded for 2010, will be shot using 3-D and performance capture technology similar to that used for “Beowulf.”

Depp’s casting deals closed a full day Wednesday at the Kodak Theater, where Walt Disney Studios chairman Dick Cook touted the Mouse’s upcoming slate of pics during a showcase event for exhibitors, media and other industry insiders.

So if Johnny Depp is Tonto, who is the poor schmuck who has to play the Lone Ranger? Because let’s face it, if Depp is Tonto, then Tonto is going to get all the best lines here. Heck, is Tonto even still an Indian (ahem, excuse me, Native American) in this one? Knowing Jerry Bruckheimer, the answer is a little hazy.

But for all you Pirates fans out there, and I know there are a ton of you who reads this site on a regular basis, here’s your confirmation. Yes, Johnny Depp WILL return as Jack Sparrow in a fourth “Pirates of the Caribbean” movie.

Below: Upon hearing that he has essentially sold his soul to Disney for the next 20 years, Johnny Depp’s reaction was … unexpected.