Disney’s Live Action Line-Up


Oliver Jamias, Contributor

With the success of the live action remakes of the Jungle Book, Beauty and the Beast, and Christopher Robin, Disney has been firing on all cylinders, recently releasing remakes of Aladdin and the Lion King.  A line up of more movies have been announced, with some slated for release soon.

The first of these is the sequel to the 2014 film Maleficent, titled Maleficent: Mistress of Evil.  Planned to release on October 18, 2019, this film will explore the title character’s relationship with Princess Aurora.  The development of Maleficent: Mistress of Evil has been in place since the release of the first film, although it was only confirmed when Angelina Jolie, the lead role, signed on in October 2017.

The next movie Disney plans to release soon is the live-action remake of Mulan.  Much to the sadness of Disney fans, Mulan will not seem to feature many things that made the original so loved, such as the songs, Mulan’s love interest Li Shang, or her red dragon sidekick Mushu.  While much of the core story stays the same, such as Mulan escaping an arranged marriage through war, it seems to have taken on a more serious tone, with the main villain of the original film being replaced with a witch.  Its release date is planned to be March 27, 2020.

A partially live-action and partially animation remake of Lady and the Tramp has also been announced.  However, rather than being released in cinemas, Disney plans to launch it on Disney+, their new streaming service.  It will be directed by LEGO Ninjago Movie director Charlie Bean, and will star Justin Theroux and Tessa Thompson as the Tramp and Lady, respectively.

The live-action remake of The Little Mermaid will mainly retain the same overall plot, including the characters and the songs.  Rob Marshall, director of Mary Poppins Returns, will return to direct this film while Melissa McCarthy and singer Halle Bailey will star as Ursula and Ariel, respectively.  Lin Manuel Miranda, the creator of Hamilton, will help write both old and new songs.

Various other remakes of animated films have been announced by Disney, although they have not shared many details aside from the cast and crew.  The first of these is Snow White.  Benj Pasek and Justin Paul, who had previously worked on The Greatest Showman and La La Land, will be composing new, original songs.  Cruella, a film centered around the 101 Dalmatians character of the same name, is set to star Emma Stone and Emma Thompson as major roles.  The movies: Tink, Pinocchio, Prince Charming, Peter Pan, James and the Giant Peach, and The Sword in the Stone have all been said by Disney to be in development, but aside from the producers and writers, not much else is known.  The Hunchback of Notre Dame and Oliver Twist are both planned to be musicals, with the latter being produced by Ice Cube and given “a hip-hop spin”.  Finally, the newest remake Disney has started development on is Lilo Stitch.  Dan Lin and and Jonathan Eirich, who both helped in producing Aladdin, will return to the job for this, while Mike Van Waes will be writing the script.

Disney has plenty of projects planned for the future, but it is very possible for some of the listed projects to not make it. The only thing to do regarding this is to be patient.