Recently Disney has been striking a nice seam of box office revenue by turning animated classics into live-action movies. Movies such as Maleficent, Alice in Wonderland and Cinderella have not done Mickey’s bank balance any harm, so is there any surprise that Disney has a reported fifteen such re-imaginings in the pipeline?
But Rose Red may be the first animated spin-off in this line of thinking that has nothing to do with any of the animated films. Instead it may open the door to Disney creating entirely new live-action fantasy stories.
Rose Red is being pitched as a companion film of sorts to Snow White, even though it has nothing to do with any of that. There is an actual Rose Red in the collected works of the Brothers Grimm and she is the sister of Snow White. Only, this is not the same Snow White as of the seven dwarves fame.
In the original story, the sisters Rose Red and Snow White befriend a bear, then later encounter a nasty dwarf. When at the story’s climax the dwarf asks the bear to eat the sisters, he instead kills the dwarf and then turns into a prince.
But it’s not certain if that will be the plot – or have anything at all to do – with the planned Disney film. The script had been around for a while, but was recently polished and re-pitched by the same hand that wrote Snow White and The Huntsman.
It’s unlikely to follow the original, not unless the movie finds some way to shoehorn the ‘seven dwarves’ Snow White into matters, which would be strange for any fans of the original (seeing in that the sisters go up against an evil dwarf and shack up with a bear).
Then again, die-hard Grimm fans are probably few and far between these days, so nobody will notice. Disney adaptations on these old fairy tales are always revisionist: for example, in the original Little Mermaid the hero first tries to kill her prince, then attempts to commit suicide. Somehow that didn’t make it into the 1989 movie. So anything may go in Rose Red (also not to be confused with the Steven King mini-series about a haunted house).
If successful, it may see Disney do more original live-action adaptations of classic fairy tales, much how it did with animated movies during its respective golden and renaissance ages.
Last Updated: April 1, 2016