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10 Disney Animated Classics That Need the Live-Action Treatment ASAP

Following the huge success of 'The Jungle Book,' we're expecting loads more live-action films to come from the Mouse House. Here are our Top 10 picks along with some casting ideas

1 / 10


One of Disney's most storied and stunning princesses certainly deserves her own live-action adaptation. Picture Tinsel Korey as our lovely Pocahontas (my fellow Twilight fans can back me up on this), being wooed by an ultra suave Chris Pine as John Smith. Game of Thrones hunk Jason Momoa is CLEARLY meant to play Kocoum, the sexy warrior everyone shamelessly swooned over. Even as an animated film, Pocahontas was dark, dramatic and just plain epic—a script and soundtrack long overdue for a live-action rework. Tina Xu

2 / 10

'Ursula' (Villain-Centric 'The Little Mermaid' Remake)

The only Disney villain that can give Maleficent a run for her money is none other than the evil octopus queen herself. An Ursula-centric story, a la 2014's Angelina Jolie-starring Maleficent, could give insight to the sea's most deliciously evil queen and perhaps show a softer side of the witch. We could explore her thoughts on love (remember, she did try to earn Prince Eric's love), humanity (she was human for a second, but only in attempt to rule the oceans), we know has a younger sister, Morgana. Lots to cover here not to mention her past as part of the kingdom. Plus, how dope would some sinister CGI eels look?

We'd love to see a big personality taking on the role, like Bernadette Peters, who was as witchy as the come as the witch in the Broadway version of Into the Woods, or even the likes of Taraji P. Henson or Viola Davis, who both proved how cutthroat they can be in their respective hit TV shows. Jeff Benjamin

3 / 10


Aladdin has lived many lives— more than just the 1992 Disney flick we know and love, but on Broadway, in video games, and on television as a short-lived animated series. If it could be built, it was, with the very real exception of a live-action remake. Picture it with us: Aladdin, Jasmine and crew navigating Agrabah's marketplace (ideally filmed in Morocco), hanging out with the Genie...they could make some real, live-action movie magic. Maria Sherman

4 / 10

'The Incredibles'

As we trudge through the most gluttonous glut of superhero movies in world history, a little antidote would go a long way. 2004's The Incredibles—one of the very few Disney movies with balanced gender representation—would translate wonderfully to live-action, with four prime roles for whichever actors still haven't been sucked into the Marvel or DC machines. (Let Samuel L. Jackson come back, though. And maybe keep Holly Hunter as Mrs. Parr/Elastigirl; she needs a good reset after Batman v Superman.)

Only issue is...The Incredibles 2 is coming in 2019. So maybe we can schedule our remake for like...2022? Zach Dionne

5 / 10


This movie seems obvious for a Broadway show, with hair everywhere, draped all over the theater. In a movie, you could give the hair even more of a life of its own, since Rapunzel uses it as everything from a rope to a weapon; one of the coolest things about Tangled is how its heroine breaks free to make her own destiny. 

Casting time: If Cher isn’t a perfect fit to play Mother Gothel I don’t know who is. Now imagine Zendaya as Rapunzel. She can carry the hair, and would be able to run around barefoot for the entire movie without looking silly. As for the weird drunken crowd at the pub where Flynn and Rapunzel hide out, the possibilities are endless: Tracy Jordan, The Rock, and Bill Hader come to mind, along with Peter Dinklage (dude can sing!).

Going live-action would give Tangled a little darkness, too. The tower would be isolated and ominous instead of cartoon-y, and the chase through, around, and under the castle could give superhero flicks a run for their money. —Laurie Ulster

6 / 10

'Scar' (Villain-Centric 'The Lion King' Remake)

The Lion King will forever be regarded as one of Disney’s most iconic animated films, thanks to the lovable Simba, and Timon and Pumba’s goofy pairing. But Scar was actually one of my long-time favorite Disney characters, and I always thought he was overshadowed by his older brother Mufasa. Everyone loves a good villain (just look at Maleficent), and Scar carried his evil demeanor with an amazing amount of sass. His bitterness stems from Simba taking the throne away from him, so it would be interesting to see Scar’s upbringing as a young lion and his relationship with Mufasa when they were kids. 

Rumors have swirled about his sexuality for years, and the remake can dig deeper into that. To give it a modern twist, Empire’s Jussie Smollett can voice the role! Bianca Gracie

7 / 10

'Atlantis: The Lost Empire'

It isn't one of Disney's most memorable animated flicks, but there is a lot of potential to outdo the original with a live-action remake. Imagine how incredible the world of Atlantis could look with real sets and real people in it? We need to see a badass WOC play Kida, the Princess of Altantis, and we'd say Michelle Rodriguez, Rosario Dawson or Quantico star Priyanka Chopra could all the role. Give the role of explorer/cartographer Milo James Thatch to a nerdy hunk like James Marsden, John Cho, Penn Badgley or Zachary Levi, and you've got a new Twilight-like romance for the kids. —Jeff Benjamin

8 / 10

'Lilo & Stitch'

Who hasn't wondered what Stitch, that lovably destructive, doglike alien, would look like in real life? He'd still have to be CGI, but after seeing Disney's hyperrealistic creature work on The Jungle Book, the timing feels right. (Is Andy Serkis free?) It'll be tough to improve on the 2002 original's stunning watercolor backgrounds, but Hawaii's natural beauty is always up to the task. —Zach Dionne

9 / 10

'The Emperor's New Groove'

One of Disney’s most slept-on hand-drawn classics, The Emperor’s New Groove took a fable and gave it a new-school twist with plenty of slapstick and a big heart. Pair a CGI llama with John Goodman for the live-action remake, and you’ve got another winner. Plus: Picture Chris Pratt as the new Kronk! Jason Lipshutz

10 / 10

'The Aristocats'

If there’s one thing YouTube has taught us, it’s that everybody wants to see cats playing the piano. That alone makes The Aristocats an obvious choice for a live-action remake. If The Jungle Book can give us a singing Baloo, imagine the possibilities of a bunch of cats at a jazz club! Just swap the jazz out for hip-hop and start making calls. Start with Drake and Rihanna, then add LL Cool J for some old-school credibility, and top it off with the most obvious choice of all, Snoop Dogg.  Snoop as a cool club cat seems like a no-brainer.

As for the humans, we recommend Maggie Smith in as the cats’ benefactress, and can’t think of anyone to play the angry, bumbling butler better than Benedict Cumberbatch, who deserves to have a little fun for a change. —Laurie Ulster


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Photo of the day

HOLLYWOOD, CA - APRIL 30: NSYNC is honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame on April 30, 2018 in Hollywood, Californ

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