Pinocchio is getting a lot of play recently. This is good because if there’s one thing the wooden puppet loves to do, it’s go on real-boy adventures. Recently, we saw a teaser for the Guillermo del Toro’s take on the classic tale. But, not to be outdone, Disney is sharing a first look at its own all-new Pinocchio movie .
In a release, Disney shares more about the project, saying:
Academy Award® winner Robert Zemeckis directs this live-action retelling of the beloved tale of a wooden puppet who embarks on a thrilling adventure to become a real boy. Tom Hanks stars as Geppetto, the wood-carver who builds and treats Pinocchio (Benjamin Evan Ainsworth) as if he were his own son. Joseph Gordon-Levitt is Jiminy Cricket, who serves as Pinocchio’s guide as well as his “conscience”; Academy Award® nominee Cynthia Erivo is the Blue Fairy; Keegan-Michael Key is “Honest” John; Academy Award® nominee Lorraine Bracco is Sofia the Seagull, a new character, and Luke Evans is The Coachman.
Honestly, we love the look of Tom Hanks as Geppetto. And though Pinocchio does seem maybe a little too close to the animated version, we can’t wait to see how he comes to life. Pinocchio is slated to arrive on Disney+ in September.
The Walt Disney Company
A few years back, Disney began working on Pinocchio with Paddington 2 director Paul King after the sequel received great acclaim. But nothing ever came of that version, for one reason or the other. So it makes sense that Disney would enlist someone like Zemeckis, whose technical skills rank among the most accomplished in the industry after films like Back to the Future, Forrest Gump, and Who Framed Roger Rabbit.
In previous, Warner Brothers also announced their own Pinocchio movie, with Robert Downey Jr. on board to play both Pinocchio and his father Geppetto for director Ron Howard. But that one also stalled.
The original Pinocchio remains one of Walt Disney’s greatest achievements; the studio chose its famous song “When You Wish Upon a Star” as an anthem for the entire Disney company. But upon Pinocchio’s initial release in 1940, the film lost a lot of money for the studio. Although audiences in the United States flocked to see it, its very expensive production meant that Disney relied on European theaters to add significant coin to it box office, and the outbreak of World War II halted that. Nevertheless, due to multiple theatrical releases over the next several decades, Pinocchio would up making $85 million at the box office in the end. And doesn’t count its enormous merchandise sales.
Pinocchio follows the massive success of Disney’s live-action remakes of Aladdin, The Lion King, Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, and Maleficent. Undoubtedly, Disney hopes that the power of nostalgia will once again move viewers.