You ain’t never had a friend like these: EW has confirmed that Disney is developing Genies, a live-action prequel to the beloved 1992 animated Arabian folktale Aladdin.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, the film will explore the world of the Genies and give the full backstory about how the one who plays a central role in the cartoon, voiced by Robin Williams, became a slave to whoever holds the magic lamp—trapped in an itty-bitty living space, despite his phenomenal cosmic powers. Mark Swift and Damian Shannon are attached to write, while Tripp Vinson is attached to produce.
The news comes after a string of live-action Disney fairy tale remakes and reimaginings: last summer’s Maleficent was a live-action prequel to 1959’s Sleeping Beauty, from the villain’s perspective; this spring brought us Kenneth Branagh’s romantic live-action Cinderella; and Emma Watson and Dan Stevens will star in Bill Condon’s Beauty and the Beast in 2017. The studio has also recently announced that it has a live-action Mulan and a revisionist Prince Charming movie in the works.
Though Genies is still in early development, the studio is reportedly planning to follow it up with a live-action Aladdin movie, according to THR. (No word, unfortunately, on whether a live-action Return of Jafar will come after.)