Disney is trying to turn a bunch of its animated classics into live-action gold
Every week it seems like Disney has another live-action film in the works.
After the theatrical success of "Maleficent," a live-action adaptation centered around the villainess in "Sleeping Beauty," Disney announced plans to roll out "The Jungle Book" and "Beauty and the Beast" with all-star casts. After March's "Cinderella" recently, the studio announced plans for more live-action works.
Wednesday, Deadline reported the studio is taking on a "Pinocchio"-inspired film.
What's going on?
At this point, Disney’s on track to have a huge year at the box office. The studio has two of the biggest anticipated movies under its umbrella with “Avengers: Age of Ultron” (out May 1) and “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” (December 18).
"Avengers: Age of Ultron" is currently on track to make over $200 million opening weekend. If the sequel to the 2012 film passes the $207 million run, it could very well break the record for the highest-grossing opening weekend ever in theaters.
Studio-owned companies Marvel, Lucasfilm, and Pixar have movie plans for the next few years. Marvel has superhero films squared away until 2028. Lucasfilm has at least six "Star Wars" films in the works (Episodes VII, VIII, and IX along with spinoffs). Pixar's titles include another “Toy Story.”
The Mouse House is at a point where they can experiment with other releases and kind of see what works. Disney has had immense success with its live-action fairytale ABC series, “Once Upon a Time,” so it’s a natural extension to try and duplicate that success on the big screen.
Both live-action versions of “Maleficent” ($758.4 million) and “Cinderella” ($402.2 million) have already been big hits at the box office (though the latter debuted with an exclusive short for Disney’s juggernaut “Frozen”).
Here are all of the current Disney live-action films in the works:
"The Jungle Book"
"Beauty and the Beast"
Before Jennifer Lawrence was Katniss Everdeen, Mulan was really one of the first animated characters from the Mouse House to side-step the whole Disney princess thing (though has since beenmarketed as a princess alongside the other Disney female leads). Mulan took the place of her father in war and ended up becoming both a skilled fighter, and one of the most-respected warriors in all of China.
"Winnie the Pooh"
Expected release date: TBD
What we know so far: According to Deadline, the film's focus will be on Christopher Robin as an adult who is brought back to the Hundred Acre Wood with Pooh and his pals. Alex Ross Perry ("Listen Up Philip") has been hired to direct.