Perhaps based on the success of Disney’s Pete’s Dragon remake, Fox Animation has decided to greenlight Puff the Magic Dragon, an animated/live-action hybrid film based on the popular Peter, Paul and Mary song of the same name. It’ll be directed by Mike Mitchell (Trolls, Shrek Forever After).
Details are limited at the moment, but the folk song, written by Peter Yarrow and Lenny Lipton, is based on the 1959 poem, which in turn was inspired by the poem “Custard the Dragon” by Ogden Nash, as /Film notes. The song tells the story of an ageless dragon named Puff, who lives in Honalee, a fictional city by the sea. His friend is Jackie Paper, but he eventually grows older and loses interest in his adventures with his fictional friend. These days, the property is the sore subject of controversy regarding whether or not it’s referencing smoking weed.
This is not the first adaptation of the song, as a 1972 television special of the same name, along with its two sequels, Puff the Magic Dragon in the Land of Living Lies and Puff and the Incredible Mr. Nobody, celebrated the story woven within the tune.
There’s no firm release date for Puff the Magic Dragon just yet, but one assumes it’ll come around 2018/2019. Mitchell was also rumored to direct Shrek 5 for DreamWorks Animation, but it’s unclear if his involvement in this folk song-based film will allow him to return to the director’s chair for the fourth sequel to the popular animated series.
Puff the Magic Dragon will be produced by Tory Tunnell and Joby Harold, the team behind next year’s King Arthur: Legend of the Sword, and with a director now set, you can expect to hear casting announcements shortly.