Guillermo del Toro's Pinocchio was announced years ago, and fans of the Oscar-winning director are finally getting news about the new project. It was announced back in June that Ewan McGregor was up for the role of Jiminy Cricket in the stop-motion film, and his casting news along with many others was just confirmed by Netflix. The film, which del Toro previously said would be a political parable, is set to feature a stacked cast ranging from Thor: Ragnarok's Cate Blanchett to Watchmen's Tim Blake Nelson.
"Introducing the epic cast of @RealGDT's stop-motion PINOCCHIO film," @NetflixFilm tweeted. The list of names includes "newcomer" Gregory Mann as Pinocchio, Ewan McGregor as Cricket, David Bradley as Gepetto, Tilda Swinton, Christoph Waltz, Finn Wolfhard, Cate Blanchett, John Turturro, Ron Perlman, Tim Blake Nelson, and Burn Gorman.
Netflix also included the following description: "Set during the rise of Fascism in Mussolini's Italy, PINOCCHIO — a musical directed by del Toro and Mark Gustafson (FANTASTIC MR. FOX) with a score by Alexandre Desplat — is a story of love and disobedience as Pinocchio struggles to live up to his father's expectations." You can check out the tweets below:
Set during the rise of Fascism in Mussolini’s Italy, PINOCCHIO — a musical directed by del Toro and Mark Gustafson (FANTASTIC MR. FOX) with a score by Alexandre Desplat — is a story of love and disobedience as Pinocchio struggles to live up to his father’s expectations.— NetflixFilm (@NetflixFilm) August 19, 2020
In 2018, del Toro told The Hollywood Reporter about the idea. He also said that it would be "dark." During a conversation with ACE Universe, McGregor teased that Jiminy Cricket might have a song.
"That, I had started working on before I left for New York, so some of that is recorded, and of course it's stop-frame animation, so it's going to take them a great, long time to make that film," McGregor said. "But my first part of that, which is recording the dialogue, is sort of done. There may or may not be a song that needs to be recorded. I'm not sure that I'm at liberty to discuss that, so that's maybe yet to be done."
There has been very little in the way of visual material from the film released yet, but the look of del Toro's Pinocchio is reportedly inspired by Gris Grimly's illustrations. A photo of a Grimly puppet that inspired the film's Pinocchio did find its way online back in 2011.
Pinocchio is expected to debut on Netflix sometime in 2021.