Disney Bringing Sondheim's Revisionist Fairy Tale to the Big Screen

Illustration for article titled Disney Bringing Sondheim's Revisionist Fairy Tale to the Big Screen

The latest development in the fairy tale renaissance: Disney will adapt Stephen Sondheim's musical Into the Woods, a decidedly nontraditional, if not downright revisionist, take on the canon.

Rob Marshall, director of both Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides and Chicago, will tackle the project as part of a two-year, first-look deal with Disney. Hinting at his interpretation, Marshall told The Hollywood Reporter: "We talked about the meaning of it and how timely it is still, and about family – that's always at the core of our lives."

The synopsis:

Into the Woods weaves together the story of several of the most beloved fairytales (Cinderella, Little Red Riding Hood, Jack and the Beanstalk, Rapunzel) into the original story of a Baker and his wife who try to reverse a curse on their family in order to have a child, exploring the consequences of the characters' wishes and quests and their desire for "happily ever after."


It's an interesting move for Disney, which despite its many, many properties remains associated with animated fairy tales. Disney's also the parent company of ABC, which saw some success in the fall with the fairy tale show Once Upon a Time. But Into the Woods has a more skeptical outlook on happily ever after — so it'll be interesting to see how the adaptation goes.

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But why would I want it when I can just get a DVD of the original Broadway cast? How could they really do better than Bernadette Peters?