Tim Burton’s “Alice in Wonderland” grossed more than $1 billion, and “Maleficient” has pulled in more than $130 million since May 30. Reviews haven’t been kind to most of these projects, but those dollars speak volumes. Disney will continue opening its vault for live action versions of its animated classics. Next up is Dumbo, the lovable elephant who believed he could fly. According to the Hollywood Reporter, Transformers writer Ehren Kruger will pen a script for the remake. No word on whether the final scenes will feature a climactic battle in which Dumbo battles Decepticons over the All-Spark.
There’s another compelling reason for a new Dumbo of record. Parts of the original haven’t aged well, particularly the Academy Award-winning song “I See An Elephant Fly.” It’s performed a jive-talking, singing group of crows who speak in broken English. One of the crows is named “Jim.” Disney would love for you to forget that happened now.
Live action versions of Cinderella, Beauty and the Beast and the Jungle Book are also in various stages of development. Every studio in Hollywood is participating in the live action fairy tale trend, but most don’t have Disney’s library of hits to adapt. Still, projects such as “Snow White and the Huntsman” have made enough money that this trend isn’t ending anytime soon. After all, there’s been exactly one successful video game movie franchise (Resident Evil) and studios are lining up to greenlight the likes of “Need for Speed.”