Disney Considers Making Live-Action ‘The Little Mermaid’ Part of Your World
Disney’s live-action remakes have become just as inevitable as death and taxes — not that it’s necessarily a bad thing, considering how well The Jungle Book turned out (on the other hand, there’s that whole Alice in Wonderland thing…). And like that project, the studio may once again be setting up a competing live-action remake, this time turning their sights to The Little Mermaid.
According to Deadline, Disney execs are considering a live-action redo of The Little Mermaid after recently hearing a fairly persuasive pitch for the project. Disney already has stacks on stacks on stacks of live-action remakes in the works, with everything from Tim Burton’s Dumbo to a Cruella De Vil origin story, and even a Winnie the Pooh project scripted by Alex Ross Perry.
But should the studio commit to updating The Little Mermaid, it would position them against Universal’s own live-action project starring Chloe Moretz. Disney’s concept is presumably more in keeping with their 1989 animated classic, itself loosely based on Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale about a young mermaid who gives her voice to a sea witch in exchange for the chance to become human and fall in love.
Andersen’s story is, of course, a bit darker — in that version, the witch warns the mermaid that drinking the voice-stealing potion will feel like swallowing a sword, and although she’ll have human legs and be able to walk on land, it will constantly feel as though she’s walking on broken glass.
Disney’s iteration has its own issues with its tale of a teen girl who essentially relinquishes her identity for a dumb ol’ boy. It’ll be interesting to see how both Disney and Universal re-interpret The Little Mermaid for a more contemporary audience without losing the nostalgic value.