By the end of 2021, Disney has the cast of Gal Gadot as the Evil Queen in their new live action remake of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, what sets Shazam! Wrath of the Gods star Rachel Zegler in the title role of Snow White. The Hollywood Reporter revealed that Andrew Burnap has joined the project in a new unknown role. While it seemed at first glance that the Tony Award winner would be cast in the role of The Prince or possibly with a push even the Huntsman, it appears that his role will be a brand new character for the story.
As with many of Disney’s live action remakes, the original movies would not succeed in maintaining a feature film in their previous form. The 1937 first feature film by Walt Disney set in motion the development of an industry giant, but had a run time of just 83 minutes. When Disney released their live action version of Dumbo in 2019, of which the 1941 version is one of their shortest animated classics in just 64 minutes, the plot of the animated movie made up only the first half of the film, with a new surrounding story tackled. It is possible that when it comes to Snow White, Disney will return to the original text by the Brothers Grimm to draw a longer story.
The decision to bring Snow White back to the screen in live-action is one discussed by Disney’s president of production Sean Bailey in an interview with Vulture. He said at the time:
“We had an incredible opportunity to discover what we wanted to be as a live team. We got a lot of space to think about what it was. We thought if Iron Man and Thor and Captain America are Marvel superheroes, then Alice, Cinderella, Mowgli and Belle might be our superheroes, and Cruella and Maleficent are our supervillains. Maybe if there’s a way to reconnect with that affinity for what those characters mean to people in a way that gets the best talent and uses the best technology, it can become something really exciting. It feels very Disney and plays to the competitive advantages of this label. “
Expansion of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs poses many risks
Disney has managed to prevent a large number of their oldest fans from being alienated with their recent series of live remakes of classic animated stories. Mother-in-law and the Beast, Aladdin, The Jungle Book and The lion king have all managed to catch up with big box office entries in their latest translations, and in the main, their stories have remained largely unchanged from those of the animated classics that made Disney’s name. However, not all of their new versions hit the mark. The aforementioned Dumbo did not quite manage to keep the same charm as the original story and found himself in the middle of a row about the removal of the original’s crow characters due to racial connotations, and Mulan stripped away the songs and the dragon Mushu, which did not sit well with fans, proving that there are pitfalls to reinterpret even the most popular properties.
Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is still one of Disney’s most beloved movies, and because it’s inspired so much, it’s not hard to see why it is. By rediscovering the story and extending it to what is now considered an acceptable length of play, Disney will have a hard time walking the path of the flaws of Dumbo and Mulan and ensure that Snow White hit all the right notes when it’s finally released.
West Side Story star Rachel Zegler will take on the iconic role of Snow White in the latest Disney remake of his animated classic back catalog.
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