Friday, April 3, 2015

Disney's Animated-to-Live-Action-Reboots-In-Progress Update (aka "Make It Stop!")

So... this news may be old in a few hours by the time you read it and there will be even more to add to the last but as of Thursday afternoon this is where things are at: we all know about Beauty and the Beast and since I posted the last casting update there have been a few additions. Let me just get those out of the way before I let you know what else is happening.

Beauty and the Beast
Confirmed theatrical release for March 17, 2017
(Wow - they're going to have to get a wriggle on if they're going to make that date!)
Belle - Emma Watson

Beast - Dan Stevens

Gaston - Luke Evans

Le Fou - Josh Gad

Maurice (Belle's father) - Kevin Kline

Mrs. Potts - Emma Thompson

Wardrobe - Audra McDonald

Lumiere - unknown

Cogsworth - unknown

Chip - unknown

Fifi - unknown

Asylum guy - unknown...

There's still lots of casting needed and production has got to get underway soon to allow for all the effects work that will be needed after filming. I wonder if they're using an existing castle or if they'll be constructing that from scratch too? It'd be awesome if they retained the various concept versions of Beast as the statues, like they did in the animated film.

And now on to the rest of the movies you can expect to be called fairy tales soon. We haven't had so many fantasy live action movies in production since possibly the 80's so I guess the trend was likely to return at some point. We just didn't expect them all to be done by Disney rebooting their own films!

If you follow OUABlog regularly, you also know about:

The Jungle Book which is busily in production.
The new film has cast Scarlett Johansson to voice Kaa, Christopher Walken to voice King Louie, Bill Murray to voice Baloo, Lupita Nyong'o to voice Rakcha, Ben Kingsley to voice Bagheera, and the adorable Neel Sethi as Mowgli, pictured below. (CinemaBlend)
And you also know about Dumbo (O.M.G.)
And you've probably heard about Mulan (which has been the big news this week - I think that could be good but they're going to have to work hard to keep it PG and still good). There is a chance this will become even more fairy tale - it'll be either that or go more historical, which I don't think is their demographic.
Fan made poster by Thomas Kurniawan
But did you know they're also redoing Pete's Dragon (which might actually be a good thing) with a writer known for his gritty film themes.
"...they will reinvent the core story of a venerable Disney family film. It will not be a musical and at this point Lowery is just engaged as writer. The original 1977Pete’s Dragon mixed an animated fire-breather with a live-action cast... with Sean Marshall playing the orphan boy who comes to a town with his magical dragon, his abusive adoptive parents in hot pursuit." (Deadline)
Principal photography has begun on the David Lawry (Ain’t Them Bodies Saints) re-imagining of Disney’s 1977 classic Pete’s Dragon. Set for a 2016 release, the film has found it’s fantasy setting informer Middle Earth New Zealand, instead of just green screens (thank goodness).
The film stars newcomer Oakes Fegley as 10 year-old Pete who has a dragon friend named Elliott who can become invisible. Elliot will be brought to life by Weta Digital, the Wellington-based digital visual effects company that did the VFX for the Hobbit and Planet of the Apes will animate the dragon. So does this make Elliott the dragon Smaug’s distance cousin?
Bryce Dallas Howard is set to co-star as Grace, the park ranger who discovers Pete and his dragon. The story will deviate from the original family film but intends to keep it’s theme at the core. Robert Redford is also attached as Grace’s father. Their characters, while not the same as the original’s, will be very close as it seems that Grace is a variation of Helen Reddy’s role and Redford’s will be similar to Mickey Rooney’s. Wes Bentley and recently announced Karl Urban, will also be featured as brothers and Oona Laurence will play a young girl who befriends Pete. (SassyMamainLA -2-12-15)
And today's (Thursday) announcement: Winnie the Pooh. Live Action Winnie the Pooh.
The focus will be Christopher Robin as an adult, which brings him back to A.A. Milne’s famous bear and the Hundred Acre Wood. (Deadline)
Artist sadly unknown - I feel you bear!
I wouldn't be surprised to see Aladdin announced soon or perhaps Pocahontas (which Disney made into a fairy tale fantasy of their own).

Let's just get it over with and announce a live action Frozen already.
NOTE: The Little Mermaid live action film currently in development/production (it's all very secretive) is NOT Disney but will be based on the original Hans Christian Andersen story and directed by Sofia Coppola.

Aside: in response to the crazy trend, Saturday Night Live created a live action Bambi trailer with Dwayne johnson, which you can see HERE. (Adult content - not for kids.)
PS: I can't wait to see the live action Fantasia*

*I could not find the sarcastic font - if anyone can locate it, please let me know. I may have a lot of use for it in the coming months.

1 comment:

  1. Well, this gives us some more movies to review if we choose to allow a little wiggle room around the word "fairy tale". The funny thing is that it's arguable that other studios actually started this trend with movies like Mirror Mirror and Jack the Giant Slayer. However, it's Disney that took the ball and ran with it like crazy. They'll also probably get the most credit for it, because they're Disney. Disney always seems to get the credit for any trend they successfully take part in.