Guillermo del Toro has added two Oscar winners to his stop-motion musical Pinocchio

By Alexia Fernandez
August 19, 2020 04:09 PM
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Cate Blanchett, Tilda Swinton
Stephane Cardinale - Corbis/Corbis via Getty; Anthony Harvey/Shutterstock

Guillermo del Toro is adding top talent to his star-studded Pinocchio cast.

The Shape of Water director has hired Oscar winners Cate Blanchett and Tilda Swinton for his upcoming stop-motion musical of the beloved fairytale for Netflix, according to Deadline.

The cast includes newcomer Gregory Mann as Pinocchio, Ewan McGregor as Jiminy Cricket and David Bradley as Geppetto, the outlet reported.

Swinton and Blanchett also join Christoph Waltz, Finn Wolfhard, John Turturro, Ron Perlman, Burn Gorman and Tim Blake Nelson.

The film, which will be written, directed and produced by del Toro, is said to be a stop-motion animated musical and set during the rise of fascism in Italy.

“No art form has influenced my life and my work more than animation and no single character in history has had as deep of a personal connection to me as Pinocchio,” Del Toro, 55, previously told The Hollywood Reporter in a statement.

“In our story, Pinocchio is an innocent soul with an uncaring father who gets lost in a world he cannot comprehend,” the Pan's Labyrinth director continued. “He embarks on an extraordinary journey that leaves him with a deep understanding of his father and the real world. I’ve wanted to make this movie for as long as I can remember.”

McGregor spoke about his casting in June during a virtual panel Q&A for ACE Universe.

"I'm playing Jiminy Cricket in Guillermo del Toro's version of Pinocchio," he said at the time. "That I had started working on before I left for New York. So some of that is recorded."

"And of course, it's stop-frame animation so it's going to take them a great long time to make that film," McGregor added. "But my first part of that, which is recording his dialogue, is sort of done. There may or may not be a song that needs to be recorded. I'm not sure that I'm at liberty to discuss that."

Disney’s 1940 film Pinocchio centered on an old woodcarver, Geppetto, who makes a wooden puppet he names Pinocchio. The puppet is brought to life by a blue fairy, who tells him he can become a real boy if he proves himself to be “brave, truthful and unselfish.”