Sam Mendes in Early Talks to Direct 'Pinocchio' Live-Action Reboot

Justin Kroll
Pinocchio
Pinocchio (Credit: Disney)

Sam Mendes is in early talks to direct Disney’s live-action adaptation of Pinocchio.

Sources close to Mendes say this it is premature and that the director has not fully committed to coming on board yet. Mendes has not been able to have a full sit down on the project due to his commitment to his West End play The Ferryman, which is currently in production.

Peter Hedges penned the script.

Mendes will no longer direct the James and the Giant Peach remake for Disney, which he was attached to less than a year ago.

The original, 1940 animated film Pinocchio was based on Carlo Collodi’s 1883 children’s book, The Adventures of Pinocchio, about a puppet and a poor woodcarver. Pinocchio was the second animated feature film produced by Disney, following 1937’s Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, but was not a box-office success.

Disney’s live-action reboots — including Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella, Maleficent, and Alice in Wonderland — have become some of the studio’s most successful properties to date, and Disney is in active development on a handful of other retellings. Jon Favreau is currently casting a Lion King film with Donald Glover voicing Simba, and Niki Caro was recently tapped to direct Mulan.

Despite the success of his James Bond pics Skyfall and Spectre, Mendes recently announced that he was leaving the franchise and has been boarding several projects. He will helm Sony’s adaptation of My Favorite Thing Is Monsters, based on Emil Ferris’ graphic novel.

Mendes is repped by CAA. The news was first reported by Deadline Hollywood.

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