Disney's Live Action Pinocchio Movie Has Already Found A New Director

Pinocchio on the floor

It's no secret that Disney is an absolute behemoth in the entertainment world. The House of Mouse has major franchises at its disposal, and markets and releases each new movie with purpose. The past few years have seen Disney buckle down on the concept of live-action adaptations. Starting with Maleficent, Disney has brought classic animated features back to life every few years, and is showing no signs of slowing down. While all eyes are currently on Jon Favreau's Lion King, a live-action version of Pinocchio is currently in the works as well. And it's already found its new director.

New reports indicate that Paddington director Paul King will be helming Disney's upcoming Pinocchio movie, which seems like a pretty perfect choice. The Paddington franchise has been almost universally loved, with King managing to make the talking bear into a film franchise that all ages can enjoy. Considering Pinocchio will take a similar type of charm and magic, the news (which comes to us from THR) news makes perfect sense.

Of course, Paul King wasn't the only director attached to the live-action version of Pinocchio. American Beauty director Sam Mendes was originally set to direct, which seemed like a major get for the studio. Unfortunately, he ended up departing the project months ago. It's currently unclear why he chose to depart the project, with early rumors indicating it might have to do with the development of the next James Bond film. But now that Disney has found a replacement in Paul King, the development process of Pinocchio can continue.

By comparison, Paul King is far less experienced than Sam Mendes. The Paddington films are his first big hits, so it must be extremely exciting for the director to book such a major gig for Disney. And because the House of Mouse is known to hire the same folks time and time again, this could mean big things for his future. Just look at Jon Favreau, who has been getting Disney and Marvel gigs like his life depends on it.

It should be interesting to see what Paul King does with Pinocchio. While the original 1940 movie is nostalgic and brought the character to new generations, it's not quite as current as movies like Beauty and the Beast and The Lion King. In fact, there are plenty of kids out there who don't even realize that Ultron's little song from the second Avengers movie is actually from Pinocchio.

But if anyone can bring Pinocchio's happy spirit to live-action, it's got to be Paul King. With Paddington 2 at an outstanding 100% rating on Rotten Tomatoes, it's clear that both fans and critics love the furry little guy. Now imagine how much they're going to love a talking puppet?

CinemaBlend will be sure to update you on all things Pinocchio. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your next tript ot he movies.

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.