Thursday, September 4, 2014

Neil Gaiman's upcoming Hansel & Gretel redux optioned by The Hundred Foot Journey producer


A lot of Neil Gaiman fans have reason to be happy today; it's been announced that Gaiman's upcoming graphic novel version of Hansel & Gretel - illustrated by Lorenzo Mattotti and out in bookstores in October - is going to be turned into a movie.  Even better news is the producer behind the venture, Juliet Blake. Ms. Blake last teamed up with Oprah Winfrey and Steven Spielberg to bring us the delicious The Hundred Foot Journey which I adored. [You can read my take here, if you like.]

Gaiman, whose books “Coraline” and “Stardust” were also adapted into feature films said
“For me, retelling Hansel and Gretel was a way of telling an old tale in a way that made it immediate and true, and about us, now. It reminds us of how paper thin civilization really is. It’s about hunger, and about families.”
He also made the standard pr statement about being thrilled and delighted to be working with Juliet Blake "to bring Hansel and Gretel to the world again, and to show people how much this story has to say to us.”

I don't doubt it! Besides the beautiful The Hundred Foot Journey which Blake optioned after discovering the Richard Morais book when it was still in galley form, and the British television show, Beast, Blake has been behind many a Nat Geo program and recently produced a TED talk on education. She's a producer with the necessary gravitas to make this something other than the beastly Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters or the desire to turn it into an animated project. And with The Hundred Foot Journey already earning a whopping $41 million in its first month, she has the financial success i.e. studio cred, to make it her way.

While the Grimm Bros. fairy tale is an old story, I'm intrigued to see what @Neilhimself does to update the material. Interesting, don't you think, the contrast between the lavish gourmet meals served up in high-priced restaurants around the world - and movies like The Hundred Foot Journey - and the lack of decent, nutritious food available to those living in impoverished communities around the world? 

Since it's going to be a live action vs animated project, we can start conjuring up a dream cast. Ideas?


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