Is there a war brewing between Disney and Warner Brothers? WB was not pleased with Disney after they rushed OZ: THE GREAT AND POWERFUL into theaters, especially because Warner Brothers owns the rights to the original film. Disney’s OZ took only the contents of L. Frank Baum’s book, and even needed lawyers on set daily to make sure they would not get sued.
Now Disney is moving forward with a live action reboot of BEAUTY AND THE BEAST, an extremely popular Disney work – and yet, Warner Brothers announced last year that Guillermo Del Toro is working on a much darker, gothic version of the same story.
Neither film has a start date or budget, and neither studio has announced much more than the development of screenplays.
Strikingly similar projects from separate studios are not a new phenomenon. Consider last year’s MIRROR MIRROR and SNOW WHITE AND THE HUNTSMAN releases.
At one point Emma Watson was set to star in Del Toro’s adaptation but has since been rumored to be headlining a CINDERELLA remake at Disney. As for Disney’s version, they have hired Joe Ahearne (TRANCE) to write the script, which will be called THE BEAST, and will tell the beast’s point of view.
Ahearne, who recently worked for Danny Boyle on TRANCE, is also the writer for the Starz TV series “DaVinci’s Demons.”