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Ron Howard Reportedly Eyeing Robert Downey Jr.’s ‘Pinocchio’ Movie


Not to be confused with Disney’s ever-growing slate of live-action remakes (which includes a Pinocchio project), Warner Bros.’ has had a Pinocchio movie of their own in development for years, with Robert Downey Jr. attached to play the role of puppet creator Gepetto. After repeatedly failing to secure a director, WB’s Pinocchio may have finally found its maker in Ron Howard, who is reportedly coming aboard to direct the long-gestating live-action take on the classic fairy tale.

The latest Pinocchio update comes from The Tracking Board and has yet to be confirmed by Warner Bros., so take it with a grain of salt for now. The site reports that Howard will make Pinocchio his follow-up to Inferno, the final film in the Da Vinci Code trilogy. Howard follows in the footsteps of Ben Stiller, Tim Burton and Paul Thomas Anderson — all of whom were in talks to direct Pinocchio at various points.

Downey Jr. will play Gepetto in the new, live-action redo of the beloved children’s tale, firt published in 1883 by Carlo Collodi. The story centers on a lonely woodcarver who carves a little puppet boy to keep him company, only to soon discover that the puppet’s wishes of becoming a real boy have come true. Disney released their iconic animated adaptation in 1940, while this version is said to center more on Gepetto in his search for Pinocchio after the boy goes missing.

Just as the film has had a few directors, it’s also gone through a few screenwriters, with Hannibal showrunner Bryan Fuller penning a previous draft, and Jane Goldman (Kingsman: The Secret Service) writing the most recent version.

Howard most recently directed In the Heart of the Sea, and reunites with Tom Hanks for Inferno, which hits theaters on October 12.

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