It looks as though Disney’s upcoming live-action Aladdin production is getting a script rewrite. The film – a remake of the Oscar-winning 1992 animated hit that starred Robin Williams as the voice of the Genie – is being directed by long-time gangster movie enthusiast Guy Ritchie. Vanessa Taylor, writer of several Game of Thrones episodes, will tackle the rewrite of frequent Tim Burton collaborator, John August’s (Dark Shadows, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory), script.
Ritchie is still busy getting things nailed down before the film heads into production, which may take place late this year or early 2018. There had previously been much speculation over who would take on the iconic Genie role, but that question was answered at this year’s D23 Expo, with Will Smith having been confirmed for the role. In addition to Smith, Disney also revealed that Naomi Scott (Power Rangers), will play Jasmine, while relative newcomer Mena Massoud will take on the titular role of Aladdin.
But while Aladdin’s cast continues to grow, The Tracking Board brings us this latest news that the script is going to be rewritten. In addition to the aforementioned Game of Thrones credits, Vanessa Taylor has previously written for a variety of popular television series, such as Alias and HBO’s Tell Me You Love Me, as well as feature films Hope Springs and Divergent. Most recently she’s joined forces with Guillermo del Toro for the script of his upcoming adventure/fantasy film The Shape of Water.
So far, Disney’s live-action remake has been somewhat slow to get on its feet. Originally intended to begin production this summer, the studio was reportedly having a bit of trouble putting a cast together. Even now, with the roles of Aladdin, Jasmine and the Genie settled, the question still remains as to who will be playing the film’s lead villain, Jafar. There have of course, been rumors that Guy Ritchie was considering Tom Hardy for the part, but to date there has been nothing to confirm that this was indeed going to happen. And with the script now being rewritten by an entirely new writer, it appears the wait for Aladdin could indeed be much longer than originally expected.
Of course, Aladdin fans shouldn’t be concerned that the production is changing writers at this point, as rewrites are entirely typical of any major Hollywood production. The fact that Disney has brought in a new writer should not be taken as a sign that things are heading off course, or that the film isn’t in stable hands.
With its blend of fantasy, music and humor, Aladdin seems to have everything going for it as far as potentially successful remakes go. The revelation that Will Smith will play the Genie is sure to irk some who feel there can only ever be one Genie, in the late Robin Williams. However, Disney’s desire to take its time and get things right before a single scene is shot just may help Aladdin find the success that past live-action remakes like Beauty and the Beast and The Jungle Book have found. And with one final huge casting announcement to make, there’s sure to be much future talk about what’s in store for this remake.
Source: The Tracking Board