Walt Disney Studios has found its next live-action remake of one of their animated films with Hercules; we have exclusively learned.
The studio has tapped Jeffery Silver (The Lion King, Tron: Legacy) and Karen Gilchrist (The Lion King, The Mandalorian) to produce. The film is expected to be a theatrical release, not a Disney+ original like Lady and the Tramp, as well as Robin Hood and Lilo & Stitch both in pre-production. The film is expected to feature songs from the original animated film, with new ones likely being added.
UPDATED: THR has confirmed our scoop about Hercules coming to the big screen. They added that Dave Callaham (Wonder Woman 1984), who is also involved with Marvel’s Shang-Chi, will pen the script. The Russo Brothers (Avengers: Endgame) will be producing under their AGBO banner; however, they will not be directing.
Another huge thing I want to add to this piece are three directors that I’ve heard from pretty reliable sources that the studio is interested in to direct the project. Let me start off by saying these are just names I’ve heard and are by no means in any formal discussions.
The first name I’ve heard most recently from two different sources is Jon Favreau, Favreau has directed two of Disney’s most successful live-action remakes in 2016’s The Jungle Book and 2019’s The Lion King, which would re-team him with both Silver and Gilchrist.
The second name I heard maybe a year ago was Joe and Anthony Russo a.k.a the Russo Brothers, who directed four of the most highly-praised Marvel films of all-time Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014), Captain America: Civil War (2016), Avengers: Infinity War (2018), and the highest-grossing movie of all-time, 2019’s Avengers: Endgame. I’ve also heard they are both big fans of the animated film.
The last name I heard but have the least faith in, in terms of who I heard it from is Gore Verbinski, who directed and kicked off one of Disney’s most successful franchises ever, with the first three Pirates of the Caribbean films. Verbinski also directed 2013’s The Lone Ranger, which was also expected to kick off its own franchise. Sadly, the film flopped, and those plans were quickly scrapped, though the film has been met with a cult following in recent years.
I’d like to finish up by reiterating that these are just names I’ve heard, and none of these directors are in talks or are officially being looked at by the studio.
Once a director is tapped, the studio will begin the search for their lead stars. Despite the current Hollywood shut down due to the coronavirus, it is expected the studio will meet with writers/directors/actors via Zoom.
Released in 1997 by Walt Disney Animation Studios, Hercules (Tate Donovan), follows a son of gods, who was snatched as a baby by Hades (James Woods) and forced to live among mortals as a half-man, half-god. Now a teenager, Hercules needs to perform a rite of passage on Earth to prove himself worthy of living with the gods on Mount Olympus. With his plucky satyr sidekick, Philoctetes (Danny DeVito), along for the ride, Hercules must learn how to use his strength to defeat a series of evil creatures.