It probably seems like a matter of inevitability at this point, but Deadline is reporting that Disney's THE LITTLE MERMAID may be getting the live-action treatment. The 1989 animated classic gave way to a new golden age for Disney cartoon movies when it came out. Now, based on the success they've been experiencing with adapting old cartoons into new movies, Disney seems poised to do the same with THE LITTLE MERMAID.
According to the site, they're only in the conversation stage for the time being. They're weighing their options, talking to producers, trying to see what the logistics of the production would be before officially giving the project a green light. You can't blame them for taking their time, as Disney has quite a lot of films like this in some stage of development at the moment.
ALICE THROUGH THE LOOKING GLASS opens this weekend for the Mouse House, but here's what else they have cooking that's based on older properties in their back catalogue:
- PETE'S DRAGON
- BEAUTY AND THE BEAST
- CRUELLA (A spinoff/adaptation of 101 DALMATIONS)
- MARY POPPINS
- MALEFICENT 2
- THE NUTCRACKER AND THE FOUR REALMS
- THE JUNGLE BOOK 2
- TINKER BELL
So Disney has quite a lot going on in this regard, and that's not counting "new" properties like an adaptation of A WRINKLE IN TIME or JUNGLE CRUISE. This makes THE LITTLE MERMAID a little less of a priority for the studio, and something that could make the idea an actual challenge for them could be the fact that Universal is already working on a film based on the original Hans Christian Anderson book that the cartoon used as its inspiration.
I think it's a safe bet that this will happen one day, but I wouldn't expect a half-hearted "just cause we feel like it" sort of green light any time soon. If and when Disney decides to bring its LITTLE MERMAID into the live-action realm, it'll have all of its ducks in a row.