Robert Downey Jr’s ‘Pinocchio’ gets a writer

Los Angeles, July 2 (IANS) Production banners Warner Bros and Team Downey are moving forward with their live-action take on “Pinocchio” and have enlisted Paul Thomas Anderson to write a draft with an eye to directing.

Though the film would seem far outside of Anderson’s wheelhouse, the move shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise. Downey was poised to star in Anderson’s “Inherent Vice” until his “Avengers: Age of Ultron” obligations got in the way and Joaquin Phoenix stepped in to play the lead, reports hollywoodreporter.com.

Downey and Anderson are good friends and have been looking to work together for some time.

“The Giver” writer Michael Mitnick penned the latest draft of “Pinocchio”, and Downey has been quietly tweaking the script for the past six months. Downey has been developing “Pinocchio” for years, but the project has found new urgency in the wake of a string of live-action hits based on kids’ classics, the last one being Disney’s “Cinderella”.

Ever since auteur Tim Burton turned “Alice in Wonderland” into a billion-dollar live-action franchise and the Angelina Jolie-starrer “Maleficent” earned $758 million worldwide last year, the studios have been angling to set up projects based on live-action kids’ tales, with A-list directors flocking to the projects across town.

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