Disney have teamed up with Guy Ritchie again (Picture: Getty/Rex)
The Sherlock Holmes director enjoyed success with his helming of 2019’s live-action Aladdin movie, starring Will Smith as the Genie, which was the first of his films to pass the $1billion (£818m) mark in worldwide box office gross.
Now it appears Disney have got him back for the long-gestating Hercules remake.
The deal was reportedly confirmed last month, according to Deadline, with Ritchie joining the project which will be produced by Avengers: Endgame directors Joe and Anthony Russo through their company AGBO.
The studio is also said to be on the look out for writers, following a first draft penned by Wonder Woman 1984 and Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings scribe Dave Callaham, as first reported in 2020.
The original animation recently celebrated its 25th anniversary and is a favourite among many fans despite its initial performance in cinemas being considered underwhelming.
RItchie helmed 2019’s Aladdin remake, which grossed over $1billion (Picture: FilmMagic)
Hercules in 1997 was one of the final releases in the era known as the Disney Renaissance for the quality of its films (Picture: Moviestore/Rex/Shutterstock)
Taking inspiration from the Greek myth of Hercules (but keeping it family friendly), the musical storytelling followed hero Herc (Tate Donovan) as he went the distance to prove his worth as a hero.
It also featured one of Disney’s earlier feminist leading ladies in Megara (Susan Egan) and one of its all-time beloved villains, the wise-cracking Hades (James Woods).
Although no further details have been revealed regarding the film, its understood that it is likely to retain the original’s songs, which include Zero to Hero, I Won’t Say I’m in Love and the barnstorming ballad Go the Distance.
Hades and Meg are very popular characters in the 1997 animation (Picture Moviestore/Rex/Shutterstock)
Jennifer Hudson has previously been in talks with Disney for a role, but no other names have yet been mentioned (Picture: Getty)
Fans have previously campaigned for Ariana Grande to be given the role of Meg, following her rendition of the sassy heroine’s solo number for the Disney Family Singalong put on to raise spirits during the early days of the Covid lockdown.
There’s also demand for Danny DeVito to reprise his role as grumpy satyr Phil, the half-human, half-goat character that coaches Hercules to glory.
Newly crowned EGOT status holder Jennifer Hudson has also voiced her interest in being cast as one of the iconic gospel-singing Muses, with a source telling Metro.co.uk that producers were in ‘informal talks’ with her last September.
Ahead of Hercules, Ritchie has upcoming release Operation Fortune: Ruse de guerre, which he wrote, directed and executive produced and stars long-time collaborator Jason Statham.
The pair previously worked together on their breakout Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrells, as well as Snatch, Revolver and last year’s Wrath of Man.
The live-action Hercules film does not yet have a release date.
Got a story?
If you’ve got a celebrity story, video or pictures get in touch with the Metro.co.uk entertainment team by emailing us firstname.lastname@example.org, calling 020 3615 2145 or by visiting our Submit Stuff page – we’d love to hear from you.
Entertainment – MetroRead More