Disney’s new obsession with live-action remakes of their own classic tales is going exactly as planned with the huge successes of The Jungle Book and Beauty And The Beast. As the next projects begin getting lined up, they’re continuing to turn to big name directors to keep the magic alive.
Academy Award winning director Sam Mendes (American Beauty) is in early talks to helm the live-action adaptation of the 1940 animated classic, Pinocchio.
It’s a little surprising considering that Mendes was recently in talks to direct a live-action adaptation of Roald Dahl‘s James & The Giant Peach, also for Disney, while he’s also attached to adapt graphic novel My Favourite Thing Is Monsters at Sony and an adaptation of best-selling novel Beautiful Ruins at Fox. He’s also producing a Jane Austen picture for Sony, so to say he has a lot on his plate might be an understatement.
Of course, Disney is a big fish and might take precedence over anything else Mendes is considering working on. The Pinocchio project has very little details revealed about it, though Peter Hedges (Dan In Real Life) was reportedly penning a script loosely based on the original story.
Interestingly, Disney’s adaptation isn’t the only Pinocchio project out there. Guillermo Del Toro has had a stop-motion version gestating for years, and recently recruited Patrick McHale (Over The Garden Wall) to help with the script, while a version starring Robert Downey Jr. as Gepetto is still at an early stage of development.
Naturally, Disney’s adaptation is set to be more classical, and at this rate, probably made first. With adaptations of Dumbo (Tim Burton), Aladdin (Guy Ritchie) and Mulan (Niki Caro) lined up, there’s no reason not to expect the money and acclaim to keep flowing in.