It’s been a big week for Into the Woods, Disney’s adaptation of the classic Stephen Sondheim musical set to be released this Christmas. The other day, a generous assortment of stills were released showcasing the stars Emily Blunt, Anna Kendrick, Chris Pine and Meryl Streep. Today, Disney dropped the first teaser. Oscar-nominee Rob Marshall (Chicago, Nine) directed the musical from a screenplay by James Lapine, who also wrote the original book when the musical premiered on Broadway in 1987.
Into the Woods is a fractured tale that presents a plethora of classic fairy tale characters (Cinderella, Rapunzel, Little Red Riding Hood; a few of which are members of the Disney Princess Club) and smashes them together. The material is renowned for weaving adult, sophisticated themes regarding sexuality into it’s fun and games. A few months ago, the story was picked up that the Disney movie version would likely tone down several (if not all) of these elements; then again, maybe not.
In any case, the first visit to Into the Woods certainly looks appropriate. While no actual singing takes place in teaser trailer, heightened camera work, colorful costumes and subtle effects are persuasive in establishing the fairy tale look. There are shots of Kendrick and Blunt, and a tease of Johnny Depp, who will portray The Wolf.
Into the Woods opens Christmas Day, hoping to cast it’s spell over holiday audiences and potentially even Oscar voters in what will be an unusually musical season as Into the Woods contends with an update of the Broadway standard Annie hitting theaters six days before Christmas.