Dumbo (2019 film)
Dumbo is an upcoming American fantasy adventure film directed by Tim Burton, with a screenplay written by Ehren Kruger. It is loosely inspired by Walt Disney's 1941 animated film of the same name, itself based on the novel by Helen Aberson and Harold Pearl. The film stars Colin Farrell, Michael Keaton, Danny DeVito, Eva Green, and Alan Arkin.
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Tim Burton|
|Screenplay by||Ehren Kruger|
|Music by||Danny Elfman|
|Edited by||Chris Lebenzon|
|Distributed by||Walt Disney Studios|
Plans of a live-action Dumbo remake were announced in 2014 and Burton was confirmed as director in March 2015. Much of the cast signed on in March 2017 and principal photography began in July of that year in the United Kingdom, lasting until November.
Circus owner Max Medici enlists Holt Farrier to care for a newborn elephant whose oversized ears make him a laughing stock in an already struggling circus. But when Holt’s children discover that Dumbo can fly, persuasive entrepreneur V.A. Vandevere and an aerial artist named Colette Marchant swoop in to make the peculiar pachyderm a star.
- Colin Farrell as Holt Farrier, a one-armed war veteran and former circus star from Kentucky who is hired by Medici to care for the newborn elephant.
- Michael Keaton as V. A. Vandevere, a ruthless and enigmatic entrepreneur who acquires a circus to exploit the titular elephant.
- Danny DeVito as Max Medici, the ringmaster and owner of a small, struggling circus that gets acquired by V. A. Vandevere.
- Eva Green as Colette Marchant, a French trapeze artist who performs at the circus.
- Alan Arkin as J. Griffin Remington, a Wall Street tycoon.
- Nico Parker as Milly Farrier, Holt's daughter.
- Finley Hobbins as Joe Farrier, Holt's son.
- DeObia Oparei as Rongo
- Joseph Gatt as Neils Skellig
- Sharon Rooney as Miss Atlantis
- Michael Buffer as Baritone Bates, a Dreamland ringmaster.
On July 8, 2014, it was announced that a live-action adaptation of Dumbo was in development for Walt Disney Pictures. Ehren Kruger was confirmed as the screenwriter, and Justin Springer will serve as the producer along with Kruger. On March 10, 2015, Tim Burton was announced as the director. On July 15, 2017, Disney announced Dumbo would be released on March 29, 2019. The film features a different storyline from the original film's, though "the one central thing that holds true in both the original animation, the original cartoon" and the film is the message of "believing in yourself and finding something inside you that allows you to become the best version of what you thought you could even be, and that we're all, regardless of the things that sometimes society says, should arrive us at being outcasts; they're the things that make us all individual, special, and beautiful regardless of how crippling a certain thing may be or how polarizing a certain physical attribute even may be". The film doesn't feature talking animals, with the film focusing instead on the human characters.
In January 2017, it was announced that Will Smith was "in talks" to play the father of the children who develop a friendship with the lovable elephant after seeing him at the circus. However, Smith later passed on the role due to "scheduling conflicts" among other reasons. Chris Pine and Casey Affleck were also offered the role but passed on it before Colin Farrell was cast. Farrell, a fan of Burton, choose to work on the film because "[t]he idea of [acting in] something as sweet and fantastical and otherworldly, while being grounded in some recognizable world that we can relate to, under the direction of" Burton, was something he always wanted to do.
In March 2017, Eva Green and Danny DeVito, a recurring collaborator of Burton's, joined the cast. In April 2017, Michael Keaton joined the cast, rounding out the few prominent "adult" live-action roles. Tom Hanks was reportedly in discussions for the role before Keaton was cast. During the summer of 2017, DeObia Oparei and Joseph Gatt joined the film. DeVito said that "[he loves] Tim and [he] would do anything to be in a movie with him". DeVito said that Burton is "[a]lways spirited, always an artist, always thinking about the craft, always painting with his mind" and that he felt like "part of some kind of palette, a color scheme" while filming the movie
Production for Dumbo began in May 2017, with principal production on Dumbo starting by July 2017, in the United Kingdom. It was originally set to start filming in March 2017, before being delayed due to the character of Vandemere still not having been cast by that point. Two elephant props were used during filming "to give [the production team] an idea of his size and his shape in the scene; an idea of the lighting, and that kind of thing; where he's going to be for camera". Unlike most remakes of Disney's animated films, Dumbo mostly used practical sets during filming.
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The visual effects were provided by Moving Picture Company, Framestore and Rise FX, supervised by Patrick Ledda, Richard Hoover, Jonathan Weber, Richard Stammers and produced by Hal Couzens with the help of Rising Sun Pictures and Rodeo FX.
On October 4, 2017, Danny Elfman, another recurrent collaborator of Burton's, was revealed to be composing the film's score, which will reportedly incorporate Frank Churchill and Oliver Wallace's music from the original film. Norwegian singer Aurora will perform a cover of the original film's song "Baby Mine", for the remake.
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