There’s currently no slowing down Disney’s desire to remake its animated classics into live-action features, and the massive success of this weekend’s “Beauty and the Beast” indicates audiences are keen for this trend to continue for the moment.
But surprisingly one thing that those at the studio aren’t keen to do is to adapt some of their more modern success stories into this format. 1991’s “Beauty and the Beast” marks the most recent the animated films they’ve mined for source material, though 1989’s “The Little Mermaid,” 1992’s “Aladdin,” 1994’s “The Lion King” and 1998’s “Mulan” are on the way.
Don’t expect anything from the 21st century to make the jump anytime soon though, especially not the gigantically successful 2013 film “Frozen”. President of Motion Picture Production at Walt Disney Studios Sean Bailey has confirmed to Vulture that, regarding their live-action reboots, they aren’t touching anything that came out after the year 2000:
“We’re not looking at anything very recent, [anything] that still feels like it’s still the provenance of current Disney animation.”
Bailey says Disney is taking a few pointers from Marvel and Star Wars in terms of keeping their live-action franchise afloat:
“We thought if Iron Man and Thor and Captain America are Marvel superheroes, then maybe Alice, Cinderella, Mowgli, and Belle are our superheroes, and Cruella and Maleficent are our super villains. Maybe if there’s a way to reconnect with that affinity for what those characters mean to people in a way that gets the best talent and uses the best technology, that could become something really exciting. It feels very Disney, playing to the competitive advantages of this label.”
Disney has just under sixty animated classics considered to be canon, with many of them potentially available for adaptations including some of the lesser known ones such as “The Black Cauldron” whose live-action version is in the works. Other notable films not yet announced include “Bambi,” “Snow White,” “Lady and the Tramp,” “Robin Hood,” “The AristoCats,” “The Rescuers” and more.