Sarah Polley in Talks to Direct Disney’s Live-Action ‘Bambi’

The film will be a musical featuring music from Kacey Musgraves

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Sarah Polley is in talks to direct a live-action remake of Walt Disney’s “Bambi,” TheWrap has learned. Details on the project are scarce, but she will work off a recent screenplay draft penned by Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster and the film will be a musical featuring music from Kacey Musgraves.

The news comes as Disney’s “The Little Mermaid” is lighting up the box office and could follow in the footsteps of the photoreal CG-filled “The Lion King” and “The Jungle Book.” While those films were blockbusters, it has not been confirmed as to whether this seemingly less epic offering will be intended for theaters or, as we saw with “Pinocchio,” “Lady and the Tramp” and “Peter Pan and Wendy,” Disney+.

Sarah Polley is coming off an Oscar win for Best Adapted Screenplay for the critically acclaimed “Women Talking,” which was her first directorial effort in over a decade following the autobiographical documentary “Stories We Tell.” Like Barry Jenkins boarding a prequel to “The Lion King” centered on Mufasa, this seems to be a case of a recent indie darling striking while the iron is hot.

Time will tell as to whether “Bambi” will prove as heartbreaking as Polley’s “Away from Her” or “Take This Waltz,” but the child star-turned-acclaimed director seems an unusually appropriate fit for what is likely to be an emotional butt-kicker.

An adaptation of Felix Salten’s 1923 novel, Disney’s animated “Bambi” is considered one of the early classics of the earliest era of Walt Disney’s animated output. “Bambi” was the fifth Walt Disney animated feature film, released by RKO Radio Pictures in 1942, and has earned $267 million worldwide over its original release and copious reissues.

Polley joins a long line of esteemed auteurs choosing to play in the Walt Disney live-action remake sandbox, including Tim Burton (“Alice in Wonderland,” “Dumbo”), Kenneth Branagh (“Cinderella”), Niki Caro (“Mulan”), David Lowery (“Pete’s Dragon,” “Peter Pan & Wendy”) and Guy Ritchie (“Aladdin”) among others.

As much as some might carp about A) the existence of a live-action “Bambi” and B) someone like Polley coming off an Oscar-winning masterpiece to helm a Disney redo, it wasn’t so long ago that pundits were decrying the lack of “not a white guy” filmmakers getting such opportunities. If there must be a live-action “Bambi,” at least Polley will get a decent paycheck and her participation gives it the benefit of the doubt.