Last week brought the news that Channing Tatum is attached to star in Peter Pan Begins, a film that will explore the origins of author J.M. Barrie’s beloved character. Now Sony has won the rights to the project, which has been retitled Pan. Among other things, the movie will reveal that the famous boy who never grew up and the diabolical Captain Hook are actually brothers.
Heat Vision says Pan “seeks to tell the origin of the [titular] flying immortal,” and that the project was a hot bidding item for studios – who no doubt are hoping that this re-envisioning of Barrie’s original creation turns out to be as profitable an undertaking as Alice was for Disney last year.
According to Peter Pan canon by Barrie (thanks to Cinematical for this), James Hook is not the captain’s real name, and “to reveal who he really was would even at this date set the country in a blaze.” Clearly the minds behind Pan are interpreting that bit of information in a… liberal manner.
Barrie also revealed that Hook was a former petty officer that worked for Blackbeard and was “the only man Long John Silver ever feared.” It’s a shame Disney failed to acquire the rights to this project – there might have been (irony alert!) cross-over potential between Pan and this summer’s Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides!
It’s still not clear how exactly Tatum fits into all this business – that is, will he be playing Pan, Hook, or an entirely different character? He’s very much a grown man, and while he should be okay as an undercover cop imitating a high school student in the 21 Jump Street movie, the idea of Tatum attempting to pass himself off as being a not-yet-developed adolescent just doesn’t fly (sorry – bad pun).
It seems more likely that Pan will start out with Peter and Hook as children, then follow them as Hook matures and becomes a man (Tatum, perhaps?), while his sibling remains forever young. Does that angle really add any more drama, depth, or meaning to the relationship between the two characters? Or is J.M. Barrie attempting to perform somersaults in his grave right now? I leave it to you readers to decide.
Regardless, Pan is moving forward, so expect to hear more about the project soon.