Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Disney Live Action Remakes

As someone who grew up watching my fair share of Disney movies, I can't help but be a bit excited about the slate of upcoming live action remakes Disney outlined. Sure at first I wondered if it was necessary, and I was worried bad remakes might "ruin my childhood." But then I realized that was an extreme reaction. It makes business sense to make films based on known properties, and even if I don't care for the remake, the classic will still be there waiting to be enjoyed again and again. These are films that a growing number of up and coming filmmakers and seasoned veterans also grew up on, so it makes sense to see them start turning their attention to making modern versions of them. Thankfully the recent success of Jon Favreau's take on "The Jungle Book" (always a favorite while I was growing up) helped set my mind at ease.

Also of interest is Disney's film adaptations of popular theme park attractions that makes them money at the box office and then allows them to update their theme park attraction and increase interest for a new generation. It's another savvy business move, and no matter how hated the "Pirates of the Caribbean" franchise has become, we'll always have "The Curse of the Black Pearl," and one of the best characters Johnny Depp ever contributed to the silver screen. So I have to admit that I am intrigued by a "Jungle Cruise" movie, considering it's been a favorite attraction of mine since I was young. But as usual, I'll keep those pesky expectations in check, because we all know how dangerous expectations can be... and adaptations for that matter... and jungle cruises for that matter.

Having said all of that here's some lists:
Live Action Movies they’ve already made (based on classic Disney films or Disney Theme Park Attractions):
  • Cinderella
  • The Jungle Book
  • Alice in Wonderland
  • Maleficent
  • The Haunted Mansion
  • Pirates of the Caribbean
  • Tomorrowland

Movies On The Way:
  • Pete’s Dragon
  • Peter Pan
  • Beauty and the Beast
  • The Jungle Book 2
  • A Wrinkle in Time
  • Night on Bald Mountain (based on a segment from "Fantasia")
  • The Sword in the Stone
  • Dumbo
  • Pinocchio
  • Alice Through The Looking Glass
  • Maleficent 2
  • Cruella (starring Emma Stone)
  • Winnie the Pooh
  • Mulan
  • Tink (starring Reese Witherspoon)
  • Prince Charming
  • Genies (Aladdin Prequel)
  • Night on Bald Mountain (based on a segment from Fantasia)
  • The Jungle Cruise (starring Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson)
  • Marry Poppins Sequel (directed by Rob Marshall, starring Emily Blunt)

The Attention Grabbers:

Pete's Dragon:
I always enjoyed the 1977 "Pete's Dragon" growing up, and this one's been written and directed by David Lowery the acclaimed director of "Ain't Them Bodies Saints." He's also doing the "Peter Pan" remake as well, but that one doesn't have an announced release date.

The Sword in the Stone:
This one is another one I liked a lot as a kid, but the important news is that it's a fantasy story full of swords and wizards and witches being handled by "Game of Thrones" writer and producer Brian Cogman.

This one comes down to my interest in seeing how director Tim Burton adapts the rather emotional classic film, and perhaps more interestingly how he handles the pink elephants on parade sequence. That scene alone might just have always been a Tim Burton dream sequence.

If Disney gets this film right, it could be downright awesome and appeal to the ever growing film going audience in China. That is, of course, if the powers that be listen to the petition that had over 80,000 signatures requesting them to be smart and NOT cast a caucasian in the lead role (or pretty much any role for that matter).

Winnie The Pooh:
Never particularly into "Winnie the Pooh" growing up, but the interesting part about this is it's being written and directed by acclaimed indie director Alex Ross Perry. Having seen a couple of his films (and liking them), I can't say his style seems to fit the bill for "Winnie the Pooh," but then again I wonder how many people wondered the same about Spike Jonze doing "Where the Wild Things Are."

Movies They Haven't Made Plans to Make Yet:
  • Lady and the Tramp
  • The Aristocats
  • The Black Cauldron
  • The Lion King
  • Pocahontas
  • Lilo & Stitch
  • Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs
  • Bambi
  • Robin Hood
  • The Rescuers

TV Shows They Should Make Film Adaptations of (preferably animated in these cases):
  • Darkwing Duck
  • Talespin
  • DuckTales
  • Rescue Rangers

Tell me "Talespin" wouldn't be a great follow up to "The Jungle Book," especially if they could get Bill Murray to reprise his role as Baloo.

That's all for now.

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