Disney's live-action remake assembly line has churned out one big-ass hit after another, so we really shouldn't be surprised to hear they've announced yet another one. We are, however, surprised to learn that next one's gonna be The Hunchback of Notre Dame. That one? Really? Well, alright.
"Tony-winning M. Butterfly playwright David Henry Hwang has been set by Disney to write Hunchback, a live action musical adaptation of the Victor Hugo novel. Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz will write the music. Mandeville is producing along with Josh Gad."
First of all: sounds like this isn't technically a remake of the animated Hunchback of Notre Dame, so much as it is a new musical adaptation of Victor Hugo's original novel. Given that the animated version was also based on that book (and will share a composer), we're splitting hairs here by noting the difference, but I'm going to make a record of it, anyway. If I don't, someone pedantic will yell about in the comments and then this whole week will be ruined!
Secondly: if you're thinking, "Josh Gad, eh? Why, that man's got a history with Disney! Even appeared in one of their other live-action remakes. Probably a shoo-in for the role of Quasimodo, eh?", the answer is YES, that's the word on the street. Disney tells Deadline that no casting's been finalized at this time, but come on: it's gonna be Gad. We all know it's gonna be Gad. Let's stop this charade now and save ourselves the time.
As for the remake itself: it's not the worst idea we ever heard, but it does strike us as an unusual choice. Then again, with so many other live-action remakes already in the works (including Lilo & Stitch, Mulan, Aladdin, The Lion King, and Pinocchio*), it was only a matter of time before they got to this one. Eventually they'll get around to The Black Cauldron and that's when things'll get really interesting.
Anyway, nothing further to report at this time. Stay tuned for more on this one as further updates roll in.
* = Director Peter King has allegedly left Pinocchio, but we're certain someone'll step up to that plate soon enough.