The trailer for Disney’s next live-action Pinocchio, starring Tom Hanks, has been revealed. The film will be released on Disney+ on September 8th, later this year. Because Pinocchio’s narrative and persona are in the public domain, there have been scores of film adaptations throughout the years, including one from Hellboy director Guillermo del Toro, which premiered on Netflix in December. What sets this one apart, of course, is that they have access to imagery from Disney’s legendary animated film, which is widely linked with the character of Pinocchio but is exclusive to Disney.
The teaser shows a clear example of this, with the iconic design from the 1940 Pinocchio cartoon, with the yellow-and-blue cap and cherubic face. We’re assuming that working with that volleyball on Castaway helped Hanks prepare for working with computer-generated co-stars.
The teaser may be seen below.
In Pinocchio, a puppeteer named Gepetto (Hanks) wishes for the life of one of his puppets out of loneliness and desperation. Pinocchio, the puppet, embarks on an adventure in the hopes of becoming “a genuine boy” rather than merely animated wood and strings.
Robert Zemeckis, the filmmaker of Back to the Future and Forrest Gump, is directing the remake, which stars Tom Hanks as Gepetto. This will be Hanks and Zemeckis’ second foray into the animated realm, following their collaboration on a CG film rendition of The Polar Express in 2004.
While some filmmakers have objected to direct-to-streaming as a release method for their tentpoles, Zemeckis appears to support the plans. Disney revealed in December that Pinocchio will be coming on their app, and they have had success so far merging Disney+ exclusives, simultaneous releases, and theatrical releases.
Tom Hanks plays Geppetto, the woodcarver who raises Pinocchio as his biological son, in a white curly wig and an unusual dialect, while “The Haunting of Bly Manor” star Benjamin Evan Ainsworth voices the title child. Pinocchio’s pal Jiminy Cricket, a genuine cricket that voices the boy’s conscience, is voiced by Joseph Gordon-Levitt, while Broadway veteran Cynthia Erivo will also appear as The Blue Fairy. Keegan The cast is completed by Michael Key as the frightening fox “Honest” John, Luke Evans as the Coachman, and Lorraine Bracco as Sofia the Seagull from “Goodfellas.”