Disney's live-action Pinocchio has hit another production snag. Paul King signed on to direct the movie last year, but it has now been revealed that he has left the project entirely. In 2017, Sam Mendes was on board to direct, but he left months afterwards, which is when King came on in early 2018. Disney is continuing their new formula of remaking their animated classics and bringing them to the big screen, but Pinocchio is proving to be a bit harder to put together than the rest.
In a new interview, cinematographer Seamus McGarvey revealed that Paul King has left the live-action Pinocchio movie. The project has been in development since 2015 and has not seen much forward movement since then. However, it was recently revealed that Tom Hanks is in talks to play Geppetto, though that may not be the case any longer. McGarvey had this to say.
"The director basically pulled out of the film, for um, family reasons. Disney are trying to find a new director, but yeah, I read those reports that Tom Hanks and all those other people, but yeah, they're trying to get it going."
Disney and Paul King have yet to respond to the news as of this writing. Finding a director may prove to be difficult since the studio has been through two already. With that being said, one has to wonder why Pinocchio is proving to be such a problem for Disney to get off of the ground. As for Tom Hanks still being attached to the movie, that is not clear at this time either. For now, we'll just have to wait and see.
One Pinocchio project that doesn't seem to be having any difficulty getting off of the ground is Guillermo del Toro's stop-motion animation version. The director/producer is very excited to get his take on the iconic character out to Netflix, which will not be a family-friendly event when all is said and done. The movie will be a much darker version of the story with political undertones and it is something that del Toro has wanted to do for a long time. Thankfully, his project seems to be moving along rather smoothly.
While it seems that Disney is struggling to get their live-action Pinocchio into production, there is no doubt that they will figure everything out in the near future. Regardless of whomever takes over on the movie, it's going to be hard to tell in a live-action setting, which may end up being more like the upcoming Dumbo or The Lion King, with a healthy dose of CGI to make the puppet come to life. Disney is looking at a pretty big year with Dumbo, The Lion King, and Aladdin all hitting theaters within months of each other. You can check out the interview with Seamus McGarvey below, thanks to the Discussing Film YouTube channel.