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Now that Snow White and the Huntsman and Mirror Mirror have quenched everyone’s thirst for films about that particular fairy tale, and Kenneth Branagh's Cinderella in pre-production stages, the world awaits the next ill-advised re-imagining. And from under the sea and out of left field it emerges.
Screenwriter Kelly Marcel’s short career has already taken her from parallel universes to S&M dungeons, and Deadline reports she’s currently in negotiations to rewrite the screenplay for Hans Christian Andersen’s The Little Mermaid, set to be directed by Joe Wright (Anna Karenina). The script was already worked on by several other writers, including Shame’s Abi Morgan, but Marcel is next in line for the job.
Marcel got her start as a creator and writer for Fox’s ill-fated series Terra Nova before landing the job scripting Saving Mr. Banks, the film starring Tom Hanks as Walt Disney that is sure to attract awards buzz at the end of the year. She was then hired on to adapt the ridiculously popular E.L. James novel Fifty Shades of Grey and somehow turn its deviancies into something that the MPAA won’t completely try to massacre. Interestingly enough, there was a brief rumor that Joe Wright would be directing Fifty Shades, but it was quickly debunked.
Is there anyone who isn’t familiar with the story of The Little Mermaid by now, from either the original text or the Disneyfication? A young mermaid longs to experience life on the surface, immediately falling in love with a prince when she makes it. She eventually has to decide whether or not she wants to give up her oceanic life to become human. There’s no indication whether this film will be animated or live-action, though I’m assuming the latter. Perhaps it will be more like Andersen’s vision, and we can all get weirdly depressed in the end.
For those wanting the more colorful and musical take, there’s only four months left until Disney unleashes The Little Mermaid on Blu-ray in October.