Universal has plans to expand on its dark, live-action re-imagining of a classic fairy tale, Snow White and the Huntsman (2012). A spin-off, just titled The Huntsman, will have Chris Hemsworth reprise the title role with Charize Theron returning as the evil queen. Kristen Stewart, who played Snow White, is unlikely to come back though Variety reports that she may get a cameo.
Frank Darabont, director of The Shawshank Redemption and an executive director for AMC’s TV series The Walking Dead, is in talks to direct The Huntsman. Joe Roth, who produced Snow White and the Huntsman, will return to produce the spin-off. The original film made almost $400 million worldwide and received mixed reviews.
The announcement of Darabont’s possible involvement comes after Disney’s Maleficent has crossed the $500 million mark and has generated a fair amount of buzz about its disturbing retelling of Sleeping Beauty (LINK CONTAINS SPOILERS). Much of that attention has come from the female title role in a story that definitely seems more relevant to a female audience. Universal would certainly like to see its franchise draw that same audience as Maleficent but its decision to focus on the male Huntsman could put it at a disadvantage, especially if the original star, Snow White, will not appear.
Universal has not announced a release date for The Huntsman.