With Warner Bros. holding its collective breath as Man of Steel gears up for release, it seems that the studio is turning its attention to some of the lesser known titles in the DC stable – namely, the long-running comic book series Fables, created by writer Bill Willingham.
Now, given the current popularity of the ABC fairytale series Once Upon A Time – which some believe to be heavily influenced by the aforementioned comic – it’s not surprising that Warners has found a director for the long-planned adaptation.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Danish director Nikolaj Arcel has been handed the reins for Fables, with a script by Jeremy Slater (Fantastic Four). Producers David Heyman and Jeffrey Clifford (the Harry Potter series) are also on board.
Since fairytale movies are perhaps the third most popular genre for development executives – behind superhero/comic book movies and and stuff based on toys or board games – a project based on a fairytale-themed comic seems like a no-brainer. After reports from a year ago that Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows director David Yates could helm an adaptation of the comic series, news on the property went quiet.
The concept of Fables sees well-known characters like Snow White, Prince Charming, and the Big Bad Wolf living in a pocket of New York City called “Fabletown,” having been forced out of their Homeland (basically, a different universe) after it was conquered by “The Adversary.”
With 12 Eisner Awards for its art and storytelling under its belt, the comic is well-regarded and was in development as a TV series first at NBC (which would go on to produce the fairytales-in-the-real-world police procedural Grimm) in 2005, and then ABC in 2008, the latter to have been directed by American Horror Story’s David Semel and written by Stu Zicherman and Raven Metzner (Six Degrees). Neither project made it past the scripting stage.
Director Nikolaj Arcel’s previous effort was the well-liked (and Oscar nominated) A Royal Affair, which starred Hannibal‘s Mads Mikkelsen and followed a young queen who has an affair with her physician. Arcel has also reportedly been tapped to steer a big screen semi-remake of Alfred Hitchcock’s classic Rebecca – which is no small task, and not a job to be handed out to just anyone.
With Marvel hitching some of their lesser-known titles (Ant-Man) to gifted directors (Edgar Wright), a big screen version of Fables with this director feels like a signal that DC is adopting a similar tactic with it’s more obscure properties. While it’s true that Fables has nothing to do with the DC Universe, a project like this might be a good way to test the waters with some of it’s niche series. Still, though the basic premise works well on the small screen, whether or not it can fit inside a single two-hour movie is another question altogether.
What do you think, Screen Rant readers? Do you want to see Fables on the big screen? Let us know in the comments.
Stay tuned for more news regarding the Fables film adaptation.