The studio is raiding its vault to remake classics including “The Little Mermaid”
Beatrice Verhoeven | September 7, 2020 @ 12:50 PM
Last Updated: September 7, 2020 @ 1:36 PM
Disney will be pumping out live-action versions of its animated classics for a long time to come. Here’s a list of titles in the works, including the release date of the original.
“Cruella” Extracted from the famous villainess of 1961’s “One Hundred and One Dalmatians,” this origin story of a woman who declares open season on purebred puppies — Cruella de Vil — stars Emma Stone. The reigning live-action Cruella is Glenn Close, who herself starred in two live-action adaptations. It’s due in theaters May 28, 2021.
OK, OK, “Jungle Cruise” might not count as live-action film based on a previously animated classic, but it is based on a ride at Disneyland, so we’re going to include it. Plus, we’ll take any chance to talk about Dwayne Johnson and Emily Blunt in the same sentence. It will hit theaters July 30, 2021.
“The Little Mermaid” So now we’re getting into films that are in some stage of development but haven’t necessarily been slated for release. After all, Disney has so many untitled films slated, it’s hard to count. But a live-action version of “The Little Mermaid” has been long discussed, as it is arguably one of the most popular and profitable movies in Disney’s vault. Rob Marshall is on board direct, with newcomer Halle Bailey set to star as Ariel and Melissa McCarthy as Ursula and Daveed Diggs as the voice of Sebastian the crab.
“The Jungle Book 2” This is a no-brainer follow-up to Favreau’s hit from spring 2016, based on the animated classic released in 1967.
“Rose Red” This one is trippy (no pun over producer Tripp Vinson), but promising creatively. In the German fairy tale, Rose Red is Snow White’s sister. Disney and Vinson are collaborating on introducing the world to the sibling of the famous apple-loving princess. Disney released the original “Snow White” in 1937.
“Snow White” Forget her sister — the original baddest chick in the Disney animated kingdom is coming back for her own standalone film. It was announced at the end of October 2016.
After the $1 billion-plus box office success of 2019’s Will Smith-led “Aladdin,” the studio announced in February 2020 that John Gatins and Andrea Berloff would write a sequel.
Talk about going from zero to hero. The original 1997 retelling of Greek myths was a box office underachiever, but developed a big enough cult following that the studio announced plans for a live-action remake in April 2020, with “Avengers: Endgame” directors Joe and Anthony Russo producing.
“Peter Pan” Neverland will get a practical set if Disney has its way updating the 1953 animated film.
“James and the Giant Peach” In one of the more interesting adaptations, this beloved Roald Dahl book became a quirky claymation hit for Disney in 1996 with director Henry Selick. Heavy dramatist director Sam Mendes was attached to take a stab at it, but he has since dropped out.
In early 2019, a live-action film based on 1996’s “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” was announced. Tony-winning playwright David Henry Hwang was tapped to pen the script, with Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz handling the music.
This movie has also been in the works for quite some time, with Reese Witherspoon attached as the cute little fairy from “Peter Pan.”
In January 2020, Disney hired Geneva Robertson-Dworet (“Captain Marvel”) and Lindsey Beer (“Sierra Burgess Is a Loser,”) to write the script for the live-action remake of the 1942 animated classic.
“Oliver Twist” While Disney never formally made a direct animated take on Charles Dickens’ beloved orphan, the studio did release the adorable 1988 “Oliver and Company,” inspired by Dickens’ tale but told with animals. The studio also made a small-screen live-action version in 1997 with Richard Dreyfuss.