As Disney rolls along with the production of its live-action remakes, actress Kiersey Clemons has entered talks to join the announced adaptation of Lady and the Tramp. While there are slated to be a few live-action roles in the film, the majority of the characters will be CGI animals, similar to Jon Favreau’s The Jungle Book.
The Lady and the Tramp remake will be based on the Disney animated classic of the same name, first released in 1955. In the original film, Lady, an upper-class Cocker Spaniel, starts receiving less attention after her owner, Darling, has a baby. In response, Lady starts wandering the streets and runs into Tramp – a street-smart mutt. Despite the danger of dog-catchers that seem to follow Tramp everywhere, Lady eventually falls for his romancing and wild and free attitude.
As reported by Variety, sources indicate that Clemons is closing in on the role of Lady’s human owner Darling. If selected, Clemons would claim one of the few non-CGI roles, and Disney would take the first step toward making good on its promise to cast more people of color in the live-action remake. Unlike The Jungle Book and Beauty and the Beast before it, the live-action treatment of Lady and the Tramp is scheduled to skip a theater release and go directly to Disney’s upcoming streaming service.
The film is still in the very early stages of development, and as such there are currently only two other actors onboard. Justin Theroux, known for his roles in Mulholland Drive and The Leftovers, will provide the voice for Tramp, originally voiced by Larry Roberts. Joining Theroux will be Ashley Jensen from Ugly Betty and Extras as the voice for Jackie. Jackie is set to be a gender-swapped version of the original no-nonsense character Jock, a Scottish Terrier who’s Lady’s neighbor. Charlie Bean, one of the directors on The Lego Ninjago Movie, is slated to be behind the camera once production begins. And Clemons, for her part, is fresh off her Sundance darling Hearts Beat Loud, and can next be seen on the big screen in the comedy An L.A. Minute.
Lady and the Tramp is a certified classic, with few animated scenes being as iconic as the pasta dinner scene wherein Lady and Tramp kiss after meeting in the middle of a shared noodle. With Disney already proving more than capable of developing realistic CGI animals, the most interesting aspect of pre-production on this film will be seeing how – or if – they continue to fill out the cast with diverse actors.