Last week, we dropped an exclusive that Disney is in development on a live-action adaptation of Hercules. In the story, I pointed it out that I had heard the Russo Brothers (Avengers: Endgame) were looked possibly looked at to direct. The Hollywood Reporter confirmed our report but clarified that the Russo’s would produce, not direct.
While speaking with Collider, Joe and Anthony Russo shed some light on the project that they say is in the early stages of development, when asked why they signed on the Russo’s shared their love of the original and their family as a big reason.
“Both us and our kids are Hercules fanatics,” said Anthony. “And we had heard that Disney was interested in revisiting it and we’re in love with the original. And we made a case as to why we felt we would be right to produce that film and here we are.”
In my report I also clarified that the project is likely to feature musical elements, however when asked, they said it’s so early that is up in the air at the moment.
“We can’t say one way or the other,” said Anthony before noting, “Music will certainly be a part of it.”
Disney has found massive success with their live-action remakes, both Aladdin and The Lion King grossed over $1 billion at the global box office, as did 2017’s Beauty and the Beast, 2016’s The Jungle Book wasn’t far behind grossing over $900 million, these films were very faithful to their animated predecessors, with some deeming them shot-for-shot remakes. Mulan which is set to hit theaters is expected to break that mold making some changes to the live-action film, and taking inspiration from the poem, and that seems like the route Hercules may go, Anthony explained:
“Well, I think you always have to bring something new to the table because from our perspective as storytellers, it’s not compelling for us to do a literal translation. We’ve already done that with our Marvel films. We don’t do literal translations of the comics because we feel like if you want that story you can go read that story. We’re going to give you a different story. I think we’ll do something that’s in the vein of the original and inspired by it, but we also bring some new elements to the table.”
Dave Callaham (Wonder Woman 1984), who is also involved with Marvel’s Shang-Chi, will pen the script, so expect Hercules to be filled with action. The Russo’s are producing under their AGBO production banner, which is seeing tons of success with the release of their Netflix film, Extraction starring Thor himself, Chris Hemsworth. The Russo’s aren’t expected to direct Hercules. Also, casting is far from beginning at this time, so any names floating around social media should be ignored.