The Little Mermaid is swimming her way into cinemas once again. Deadline reports that Sofia Coppola is in talks to bring The Little Mermaid back to the big screen in a live action adaptation. Universal Pictures and Working Title Films are producing the new spin on the famous Hans Christian Andersen fairytale. Prior to Sofia Coppola’s involvement, Joe Wright, of the period war drama Atonement and action thriller Hanna fame, was previously attached to direct the project.
Sofia Coppola is most well known for her romantic film Lost In Translation starring Bill Murray and Scarlett Johansson. The Little Mermaid will be the first film in the autuer’s career in which she did not have a hand in writing the screenplay. Daughter of filmmaker Francis Ford Coppola, Sofia made a big splash with her first film The Virgin Suicides while her follow-up, Lost In Translation, was nominated for four Academy awards with her taking home the sole prize for Best Original Screenplay back in 2004. Bringing The Little Mermaid back to the big screen may seem like a departure for Sofia Coppola but the autuer’s filmography often features young women colliding headfirst with a world they do not fully comprehend.
The Little Mermaid is currently being rewritten by screenwriter Caroline Thompson. Thompson’s most famous work is the 1990 Tim Burton gothic fairytale Edward Scissorhands. The live action adaptation of The Little Mermaid has past through a pair of writers before making its way into Thompson’s hands. Shame screenwriter Abi Morgan wrote the original draft for the adaptation before Kelly Marcel, who has previously drafted Saving Mr. Banks and Fifty Shades Of Grey, took a pass at the script.
Hans Christian Andersen’s famous fairytale is about a young mermaid who decides to give up her life under the sea when she falls madly in love with a human prince. The story was first published back in 1837 and has received many adaptations for both the stage and screen. The most popular coming back in 1989 when Disney produced an animated version of the classic tale. The Little Mermaid has grossed to date over two hundred million worldwide, while Disney is also preparing to re-release the animated film in 3D for audiences in the up-coming years.
Little is known about this current live action adaptation of the Hans Christian Andersen classic. Studios have seen a large amount of success with fairy tale reboots in the recent years. The most notable being Universal’s Snow White And The Huntsman, which grossed nearly four hundred million worldwide and has a sequel in pre-production. While even more moderately budgeted interpretations like CBS Films’ Beastly, which only had a production budget of seventeen million, managed to gross forty-three million worldwide back in March of 2011. The next big-budget fairy tale film to land in cinemas everywhere is Disney’s re-imagining of Sleeping Beauty with the worldwide release of Maleficent starring Angelina Jolie on May 30, 2014.
No release window has been announced by Universal Pictures or Working Titles Films at this time for the live action adaptation. The Little Mermaid will certainly show a new angle of Sofia Coppola when the autuer brings the classic love story back to the big screen.
By Benjamin Murray