Just one week after tapping Crazy Rich Asians director Jon M. Chu to direct their upcoming live-action adaptation of Lilo & Stitch, Disney may have found their star.
Now, it should be noted I could not get multiple confirmations on this information I received but was initially given this info from a solid source. That said, this should be taken as a rumor for now.
I have heard the studio has tapped 16-year-old Hawaiian actress Siena Agudong to play Lilo in the updated film, which is said to follow the same concept as the animated film. The most interesting piece of this news is that the studio would be going with an older actress, as Lilo is 6 years old in the original.
Siena Agudong is no stranger to the Disney company as she recently starred in the Disney Channel Original Movie, Upside Down Magic. The actress recently The Gersh Agency for representation.
Mike Van Waes wrote the current draft for the project, which has not been greenlit and is still in development. The studio is also prepping this film as a part of their original films for Disney+. A cool tidbit we also hear is that the voice of Stitch from the original films and series, Chris Sanders is expected to return as the voice of Stitch.
Here is a brief synopsis for the film:
The story is about the bond formed between a lonely human girl named Lilo and a dog-like alien named Stitch, who is engineered to be a force of destruction.
The remake is said to follow the same story as the animated film that followed a young girl’s close encounter with the galaxy’s most wanted extraterrestrial. Lilo is a lonely Hawaiian girl who adopts a small ugly “dog,” whom she names Stitch. Stitch would be the perfect pet if he weren’t, in reality, a genetic experiment who has escaped from an alien planet and crash-landed on Earth. Through her love, faith, and unwavering belief in ohana, the Hawaiian concept of family, Lilo helps unlock Stitch’s heart and gives him the ability to care for someone else.
Attached to produce are Dan Lin and Jonathan Eirich of Rideback, who are coming off last year’s billion-dollar hit remake of Aladdin and are also producing the Disney+ Inspector Gadget film, as well as the Haunted Mansion reboot. Studio execs Zoe Kent (Sade) and Louie Provost (Togo) will oversee the production.
Released in the Summer of 2002, Walt Disney Animations’ Lilo & Stitch grossed a whopping $273 million at the worldwide box office on an $80 million. The film would go on to spawn multiple straight to DVD sequels, which ultimately led to a Disney Channel original series that ran for two seasons from 2003-2006.