Sofia Coppola has dropped out of the live action version of the Little Mermaid, and some around Hollywood are wondering if that might scuttle the project altogether. Sofia Coppola has apparently left the project due to "creative differences" with the production team. While the film hasn't started shooting yet, her departure leaves a hole in a film that was having problems that were being taken seriously by some.
On the other hand, Sofia Coppola wasn't the only big name attached to the project. Caroline Thompson (Edward Scissorhands) wrote the most recent draft of the script after taking over for the woman who wrote the original Fifty Shades of Grey film. Before Sofia Coppola was named the director of The Little Mermaid, the position was being sought after by Joe Wright (Pride & Prejudice), according to the L.A. Times. This could mean the project might be able to replace Sofia Coppola quite quickly.
There aren't a ton of details about what this particular take on the Little Mermaid will be, and the departure of Sofia Coppola certainly throws that more into question. There had been talks that Emma Watson might be selected as the star of the film, presumed to once again be Ariel. The other names that have been mentioned, including Sofia Coppola (not exactly known for work on children's films), seem to hint this Little Mermaid was going to have a darker and more adult theme.
Sofia Coppola's exit might also throw the addition of Emma Watson into jeopardy. Considering the two most recently worked on The Bling Ring, it's a safe bet one or both were attached at least in part because the other was rumored to be joining up. While directors and actors who aren't married don't usually come as a pair, it's interesting the two seemed interested in working together. There are, of course, other actresses out there who would likely jump at the chance to play the fire-haired little mermaid who ends up getting feet through a magical spell. She comes on land because she wants to meet her one true love and when she does, must decide between this love and the sea.
Disney seems to have no problems with companies telling darker tales of their beloved stories, as long as the story doesn't go too dark. The question now is whether or not The Little Mermaid will be made at all. If it is, it certainly won't be with Sofia Coppola at the helm.
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