With the recent success of fairytale classics remade into live-action such as Into the Woods, Maleficent, and this year's Cinderella, it's no doubt that the following years will be huge on the fairytale live-actions. Pan is upcoming, Beauty and The Beast is already in post-production, and a few other animated classics are slated to have their own live-action makeovers as well. There's definitely going to be a resurgence of the fairytale/fantasy genre in the succeeding years to revive our own thirst for magical and epic adventures!
Looking through some of the stories that I've already read and loved, I noticed that most of these do not have their own movies yet. Instead, we see the already popular tales getting retold again (which is a good thing), though I believe that other fairytale classics should also be considered for cinematic release. People would definitely watch it because there's nothing better than seeing beloved real (or animated) characters brought on-screen by CGI wizardry.
1. The Pied Piper of Hamelin (Germany)
The earliest known record of the Pied Piper was said to be from a stained glass window created for the church of Hamelin in 1300 AD; and although the window was destroyed in 1660, several written records survived. Speculations and theories said that the Piper was a personification of Death and the children were actually killed by an epidemic or other natural causes.
Although the legend already has a number of direct movie adaptations (one was in 1957) this story deserves a retelling for modern audiences. It was announced in 2011 that Max Landis was writing the screenplay for 20th Century Fox, however, unfortunately, although the studio announced it, the movie never blossomed into fruition. It would have made a great dark fantasy film... Imagine, an abduction of local children because people cheated the Piper of his payment from ridding the town of the plague of rats and only three children survived to (possibly) tell the tale. I still have high hopes that at the right time, they'll continue the making of this movie!
2. Golden Hairs and Golden Stars (Lithuania)
Somehow, just thinking of this reminded me of Tangled-- but instead of the baby with golden hair of youth abducted by a greedy woman with the quest to live forever young and beautiful. The tale of these two children (with ugly names for children with unusual birthmarks) is that they are banished by their very own grandmother. It is a rather dark and twisted tale, but the adventures that ensue when these kids grow up into adolescents with the quest to find their true parents is something truly enchanting and deserves a chance for a retelling for today's audiences.
3. The Seven Foals (Norway)
If there could ever be a sequel of sorts for the bizarre comic relief Into The Woods offered, I hope the tale of The Seven Foals could be included in one of the acts. It's a story of three brothers that grew up in a poor family who set out into the world to help their parents. Of course, an easy way for them to do this is to get employment from the King, who happens to be needing someone to guard his horses and to report to him on what they do during the day. It seems as an easy enough task, because if you're none the wiser, you could always lie to the king and produce 'proofs' of your deceit, believing he knows just as much as you do. Like the others, I have high hopes that this story will someday be made into a film because it's truly something that will make you live by the rule that we should never laugh at someone's credibility just because of his appearance. Well that, and because we need a Cinderello.
4. The Cold Heart by Wilhelm Hauff
Of all the stories that deserve a feature (or even shorts! We'll take what we can get.), this story deserves it the most. It has already been adapted into a movie called Das Kalte Herz (Heart of Stone) in the 1950s and it was the first East German film made in Agfacolor. The '50s was too long ago and the story needs to be heard by today's generation!
Not only is it very thought-provoking, its story has an oddly compelling narrative and when it really comes down to it, terrifying. The elements are dark but it has humor to balance it out. With some twists that reflect metaphors of today's world here and there (although I don't think it even needs that) this would prove to be a sound film with a story that is as relevant now as it was then.
If you haven't read it yet, please do!
5. The White Cat by Madame d'Aulnoy
Move over Marie, a real Aristocat is here!
The White Cat is a French fairytale almost written into purr-fection. It is in equal part as adorable as it is enchanting. It begins with the three princes scouring the world to fulfill their dying father's ludicrous material wishes, just to earn the throne. It's comedic, dramatic, frustrating and everything in between. I've always imagined it to have that Shrek-vibe in its narrative, but mostly I just want to see on-screen the story of how the White Cat came to be.
The way this feline told the youngest prince about her background leaves nothing to the imagination. She can be very trivial, but at the moment of revelation, she was too rushed -- maybe because it was the last day of finding the perfect bride and they had to hurry, but still! It was too GAHH!!! I'm pretty sure that while there is no direct adaptation of this French classic (only a loosely based almost film called Fairy Ballet), fans of the story will want to see a film pertaining to the almost purr-fect life of the prince and the White Cat up to the very last detail.
Indeed fairytales became off-the-wall by being subsumed in their voracious popularity with the target audiences. Aside from their titles, which are noticeable and captivating, these fabricated stories could potentially succeed to profit in theaters, and compete with prior fairytale movies because of the compelling significance established from their original context.
As long as these stories are introduced imaginatively and accordingly in film, it can captivate various audiences just like their written counterparts have.