‘Hunchback of Notre Dame’ Live-Action Reboot in the Works at Disney

Dave McNary

Disney is in early development on a live-action “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” movie, based on Disney’s animated film and Victor Hugo’s 1831 novel “Notre-Dame de Paris.”

Playwright David Henry Hwang is attached to write the script, with Mandeville Films and Josh Gad set to produce. Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz will pen the music.

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“Hunchback” — the story of the bell-ringer at the Notre Dame Cathedral and his friendship with the gypsy Esmeralda — has been adapted multiple times into features, most notably the 1939 Charles Laughton and 1996 Disney animated versions. The animated movie, directed by Gary Trousdale and Kirk Wise, grossed $325 million worldwide.

The Hunchback of Notre Dame” follows Disney’s highly successful strategy of rebooting its animated titles into live-action films, including “Beauty and the Beast,” “The Jungle Book,” “Alice in Wonderland,” and the upcoming “Aladdin,” “The Lion King,” and “Dumbo.”

Hwang won a Tony Award for “M. Butterfly,” and was nominated for the revival of “Flower Drum Song” and “Golden Child.” His other plays include “Chinglish,” “Yellow Face,” “Kung Fu,” “The Dance and the Railroad,” and “Aida.”

Schwartz’s credits include “Wicked,” “Godspell,” and “Pippin.” Menken has won eight Academy Awards, and worked on “Beauty and the Beast,” “Aladdin,” and the original score for “The Hunchback of Notre Dame.” Gad voiced Olaf in “Frozen,” starred in the Broadway musical “The Book of Mormon,” and portrayed LeFou in the live-action “Beauty and the Beast.” The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.

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