Don’t fret, Johnny Depp fans. “The Lone Ranger” actor is not dead, despite an online hoax making its rounds on social media websites like Twitter. The false report, though, was based on some truth after a crew member died on the set last month.
But as TMZ pointed out, a 48-year-old crew member on the set of the film did die, which sparked the false rumor. According to the Los Angeles Police, crew member Mike Bridger was cleaning a pool tank on the set and went into cardiac arrest on Sept. 21.
"We regretfully confirm that a Lone Ranger crew member has passed away after being taken to a local hospital," a Walt Disney spokesperson told TMZ. "Our full support is behind the investigation into the circumstances of this terrible event."
TMZ reported someone else on the crew called emergency services, but Bridger was already in full cardiac arrest. By the time he was helicoptered to a hospital, he was already dead. According to police, investigators are treating the case as a “natural death.”
The death of the crew member, however, sparked an online rumor that 49-year-old Depp, who stars in the film on which the crew member died, was the victim. A memorial page on Facebook was created to pay condolences to Depp, who will play Tonto in “The Lone Ranger,” Zap2It wrote. The website also pointed out that Depp was not on set at the time of Bridger's death and was in New York rather than Los Angeles.
This isn’t the first time Depp has “died,” though. In 2010, a fake website resembling CNN reported the actor died in a car crash in France, Hollywood Life reported.