It seems like they're announcing new Disney live-action remakes every day. Indeed, they've already started being produced and hitting theaters, with The Jungle Book and Beauty and the Beast seeing great success. Live-action Disney movies are as successful as ever right now, and the company hopes that it can capture even more magic with remakes of some of its best films.
It's hard to say which new project is garnering the most attention because they will all likely cause quite the commotion. Whether it be the live-action Aladdin starring Will Smith as the genie or The Little Mermaid with Lin-Manuel Miranda attached to handle the music, each film comes with its own kind of blockbuster news.
Here's everything there is to know right now about the upcoming live-action remakes of classic animated Disney movies.
On March 19, 2018, The Hollywood Reporter broke the news that Disney is planning a live-action remake of Lady and the Tramp, directed by Charlie Bean. In October of 2018, the Hollywood Reporter broke the news that Janelle Monae will be playing the role of Peg, "the wise-cracking pound dog" first voiced by singer Peggy Lee in the 1955 animated feature. Tessa Thompson and Justin Theroux have been cast as the respective titular characters, Lady (originally voiced by Barbara Luddy) and Tramp (originally voiced by Larry Roberts). The 2019 film will include computer-generated imagery (CGI) alongside live-action shots and is speculated to be the first live-action remake Disney will debut exclusively on its digital streaming service.
#25 on The Best Animated Films Ever
#57 on The Best Duos of All Timesee more on Lady and the Tramp
On October 3, 2018, Disney announced that the 2002 animated feature Lilo & Stitch is getting the live-active treatment. Disney hired Mike Van Waes to write the script, with the duo behind the Aladdin remake - Dan Lin and Jonathan Eirich - producing.
The original animation focuses on the bond between a lonely, Elvis-obsessed Hawaiian girl, Lilo, and a destructive alien banned from his home, Stitch. The 2002 movie did not have wild box office success, but it did gain a somewhat cult following and led to a few direct-to-video sequels.
It is unknown whether or not the remake will get a theatrical release, or if it will premiere on the company's exclusive streaming platform like the Lady and the Tramp remake.
#27 on The Best Animated Films Eversee more on Lilo & Stitch
Tim Burton is directing the Dumbo remake slated to come out March 29, 2019. Though a central role was offered to Will Smith, the Fresh Prince passed and the movie stars Colin Farrell as "a former circus star who finds his life turned upside down when he returns home from the war. He and his family are enlisted to care for the young Dumbo, but a pair of nefarious entrepreneurs played by Eva Green and Michael Keaton have other plans," according to Collider.
The movie, written by Ehren Kruger (who penned three of the Transformers films) has started production in England.
#53 on The Best Animated Films Eversee more on Dumbo
Will Smith passed on Dumbo because he'll be playing the Genie in Guy Ritchie's Aladdin, which comes out May 24, 2019. After a difficult casting search to find non-white actors for the lead roles, Disney finally landed on Mena Massoud for Aladdin and Naomi Scott for Jasmine.
The movie is going to be a musical, which likely contributed to the extended search, as they needed someone capable of both acting and singing. Interestingly, La La Land producer Marc Platt is a consultant on the film, meaning the musical aspect of it is indeed being taken seriously.
The production came under fire in January 2018, when an extra named Kaushal Odedra said he saw fair-skinned cast members "waiting to have their skin darkened." Disney released a statement in response:
"Great care was taken to put together one of the largest most diverse casts ever seen on screen. Diversity of our cast and background performers was a requirement and only in a handful of instances when it was a matter of specialty skills, safety, and control (special effects rigs, stunt performers, and handling of animals) were crew made up to blend in."
Disney's comments understandably offended many.