Guillermo del Toro has something of a reputation for signing on to a whole host of projects that never get made, and while his long-gestating adaptation of H.P. Lovecraft’s At the Mountains of Madness came perilously close to getting in front of cameras before the plug was pulled, there’s been plenty of others that were announced and quickly vanished into the ether, never to be mentioned again.
In fact, despite his status as one of Hollywood’s most prominent auteurs, del Toro has only directed three movies in the twelve years since Hellboy II: The Golden Army, and they all suffered from very different fates. Pacific Rim was saved from box office disaster by a strong showing in China, gothic horror Crimson Peak sank without a trace and The Shape of Water saw him land the Academy Award for Best Director.
After such a long period of relative inactivity, the 55 year-old now has two new movies in the works simultaneously, with literary adaptation Nightmare Alley set to resume shooting next month after being shelved in March due to the Coronavirus pandemic, while production on his stop-motion musical version of Pinocchio has been underway since January.
Knowing del Toro’s sensibilities, his Pinocchio is going to be as far removed from Disney’s classic animated tale as possible, and the Blade II director has assembled an impressive cast that includes Ewan McGregor, Tilda Swinton, Christoph Waltz and of course, Ron Perlman. More additions are still being made, too, with the announcement that Cate Blanchett, Stranger Things star Finn Wolfhard and Tim Blake Nelson have also agreed to lend their vocal talents, although their roles haven’t been revealed as of yet.
The story of Pinocchio has been done so many times already, but a talent like Guillermo del Toro making a dark fantasy stop-motion musical with a star-studded ensemble will be something truly unique to behold when it arrives on Netflix next year.