We assure you that our noses aren't growing when we report that Robert Zemeckis, the legendary director behind Back to the Future, is currently in talks with Disney to direct their live-action remake of Pinocchio.
According to Variety, Zemeckis is in "early talks" to master the puppet strings for the new film. Andrew Miano and Chris Weitz are set to produce through Depth of Field, and the script will come from Weitz. Paul King (Paddington) had initially been in the directorial mix, but he has since left the project for reasons unknown. David Heyman (Harry Potter) was also once involved in the production, but he too is no longer involved.
The deal is by not officially done yet, but Variety writes that Zemeckis has "been eyeing the project since this summer." Now that his current film (The Witches) is in post-production, Zemeckis may be in a place to make his next film the tale of a puppet who yearns to be a real boy (while getting flimflammed by a fox and trapped inside a whale). It is thought that the casting process will focus on Pinocchio's creator/father, Geppetto.
Last November, Variety reported that Oscar winner Tom Hanks was eyeing the plum part, but that may no longer be the case, as he wasn't mentioned in today's article. SYFY WIRE has reached out to Disney for clarification on Hanks, as well as confirmation on Zemeckis.
This marks the continuation of Disney's live-action remake train, which does not seem to be slowing down anytime soon. Both Aladdin and The Lion King were huge hits this year, and the only potential stumbling block to this method could turn out to be the Mouse House eventually running out of animated films to remake.
Will Disney go from a lion who sings to Zemeckis directing a puppet with no strings? We will know soon enough, by Jiminy Cricket, we will know.