Right now it would seem one of the biggest things anyone knows about Disney’s live action version of Pinocchio is that it is going to happen, and it might be looking to retain Robert Zemeckis, the same guy that was responsible for Back to the Future. Apart from that there’s really not much to tell save for the fact that this idea has been stewing for a while and is finally being looked at as a possibility when it comes to getting down to business. As Ryan Scott of MovieWeb seems to allude to it’s believed that since Aladdin and The Lion King movies can both be called success stories then Pinocchio might be able to do something wonderful as well. For those thinking that the live-action and the reboots are becoming the norm in Hollywood then you’re right on the money, but thinking that they’ll give way to true innovation any time soon seems to be optimistic.
Does anyone else happen to notice how Disney is banking on the past at this point? You can’t really claim that it’s at the expense of the present or future since they kicked things into overdrive and have been making a killing with their new endeavors as well, though for some reason there’s a sense of foreboding about it all no matter how positive it seems. Maybe it’s just paranoia, but the continual success and growth of the Mouse House almost seems as though it’s going to one day come at the expense of pretty much anyone that tries to compete with them. Now that sounds paranoid. As Mick Joest from CinemaBlend has put it Disney won’t stop the live action until the money stops flowing, which makes sense but also seems like enough to make a person roll their eyes with a serious groan.
In the meantime though Pinocchio will join just one of the many ideas that could possibly be seeing live action status in the future to come. When you think of how many animated titles are out there and how many are considered to be classics it makes you wonder just how many aren’t classics that might be attempted at one point. There’s already a live-action Lady and the Tramp movie coming, so you can imagine how many other ideas are coming down the pipeline. I’d really like to be excited about all this since it’s more to write about and more for children to enjoy, but at the same time it’s the idea that the live-action versions, no matter how successful they are at the box office, just aren’t getting the job done in the same way that their animated origins did. Some might argue that people just don’t want to see the change coming and will argue for animation over live-action, but in truth it’s more than nostalgia that’s keeping people from really enjoying the live-action movies. It has a lot to do with the artistic freedom that comes from animation and the fact that movies like The Lion King turned out to be more like a documentary with animals that talked rather than the animated version which was funny, heartfelt, and in a big way a lot more effective as a movie in the minds of many people. Pinocchio is a movie that’s actually been done in live action before if people can remember, Pinocchio has been done a couple of times in live action, and while each attempt obviously wasn’t fully appreciated or even noticed, the records do show that Disney’s attempt wouldn’t be the first time. In fact Drew Carey and Martin Landau have both played the part of Geppetto in the past and as you can imagine both movies were given some attention but not enough to be remembered.
Maybe that’s the foreboding feeling that keeps cropping up, the reality that this tale has had the live-action treatment and hasn’t really done that well. But of course this is Disney, and it has the money and the muscle to get things done, right? Yeah, that’s about the long and short of it since Disney did trademark Pinocchio despite the fact that it was adapted from on old Italian tale. It would be nice to hear someone remind people that this idea has been tried in the past, and that it’s even been a horror movie idea at one point, albeit a horrible one that didn’t go anywhere really. Disney takes a lot of credit for bringing its stories to life, but now and again it would seem that the original story becomes muddied or somehow ‘lost’ as Disney brings a revelation of wonder when it releases the story to the public. It’s up to the fans to find out just where the tale came from and what the basis might be, but usually once a person does they find that Disney’s version is cuter and cuddlier than the original tale. As Martin Chalakoski from The Vintage News tells it, the original story of Pinocchio was far darker than anything Disney might consider putting on screen, and in truth the story needed a lot of redirection. Go on and take a look, you might be surprised.