With the continued success of Disney’s live-action remakes at the box office, it was only a matter of time before a new one would be announced. The surprise lies, however, in the film Disney has chosen to remake this time. 1963’s The Sword in the Stone will be the latest film to get the remake treatment from the studio, which comes as a bit of a surprise considering its place as one of the less popular Disney productions.
The Sword in the Stone will be written by Bryan Cogman, a writer who is well versed in medieval settings, having served as a writer and producer on the mega-successful Game of Thrones for HBO. While The Sword in the Stone‘s tone will be decidedly different from that of Thrones, Cogman’s involvement already gives the project some added weight and draw. The film will be produced by Brigham Taylor, who is currently producing Disney’s other live-action remake, The Jungle Book, with Jon Favreau (Iron Man) at the helm to direct that project.
While The Sword in the Stone is hardly forgotten by Disney fans, it’s still a rather surprising choice for a studio with so many classics ripe for remakes within its vaults. The Sword in the Stone was actually the last Disney film released before Walt Disney’s death, and the film was released some years after Disney’s golden age—which included features such as Snow White, Pinocchio, Fantasia, Dumbo, Bambi, Cinderella, Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, Lady and the Tramp, Sleeping Beauty, and 101 Dalmatians—and took place far before Disney’s “renaissance” period (The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, The Lion King).
Still, the original has its share of fans, and since the movie was partially based on T.H. White’s novel of the same name, perhaps Disney will be able to delve into some of the more unexplored parts of the book this time around. For now, audiences can anticipate the aforementioned Jungle Book, which is set to be released on April 15, 2016.
At one point, there had been talk of a live-action Pinocchio remake through Disney, but no new reports have come out about that production, and a possible Warner Bros. Pinocchio produced by Robert Downey Jr. (The Avengers) and helmed by Paul Thomas Anderson (Inherent Vice) may have halted those plans.