According to the Hollywood Reporter, Disney has made a rare venture into the spec script world, winning a bidding war for a new pitch by John Whittington, the screenwriter who contributed to The Lego Batman Movie and The Lego Ninjago Movie and wrote the Netflix rom com When We First Met. But what is it about?
The THR article only says that it is a “high concept story is set in the world of movies” and that it is intended for a theatrical release and won’t be relegated to the company’s direct-to-consumer streaming service Disney+. (They supposedly edged out Warner Bros. at the last minute.) We wonder if it’s a brand-new concept or if it has the possibility to utilize pre-existing Disney IP (along with all of the IP they now control, including Pixar, Lucasfilm and the entire Fox library). The logline, as purposefully vague as it is, makes us think of The Great Movie Ride, an opening day attraction that used to reside in Walt Disney World’s Disney-MGM Studios (now Disney’s Hollywood Studios) in Florida. The attraction saw you take an interactive journey through the history of movies. As the “thesis attraction” of a park that used to celebrate the production of movies and television, there was nothing like The Great Movie Ride, both in terms of scale and complexity. But it was closed in 2017 to make way for Mickey and Minnie’s Runaway Railway, an attraction devoted to the main cheese.
The new movie, which THR loosely compares to Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One (a better comparison might be Disney’s Who Framed Roger Rabbit), will be produced by John Davis with his Davis Entertainment partner John Fox, who recently worked on Disney’s theme-park-to-movie adaptation Jungle Cruise.