OP ED: Will the ALADDIN live action reboot be as successful THE JUNGLE BOOK?
Jon Favreau’s live action remake of THE JUNGLE BOOK in 2016 was such a sweeping success and it continues to lead Disney’s new trend of bringing classic Disney cartoons back to life for modern audiences. The animal adventure raked in an astonishing $966 million worldwide, making it the 40th highest-grossing film OF ALL TIME. The upcoming release of ALADDIN is just around the corner, and the question that remains to be seen is whether it can be as successful as the Rudyard Kipling adaptation.
Similar to THE JUNGLE BOOK, 1992’s ALADDIN is one of the most popular Disney animated features. It is well-remembered as one of the most iconic roles of the late Robin Williams as the humorous Genie. At the time of its original release, it was Disney’s most successful cartoon to date, and would become the highest-grossing animated film of all time until THE LION KING usurped the throne in 1994.
Plus, you can’t forget the indelible songs like A Whole New World (which won the Grammy for Song of the Year) and you’ve got a really strong bit of fandom and support behind the franchies and the unmatched power behind the music and song-writing duo of Alan Menken and the late Howard Ashman. Menken has returned for this new project to reimagine the classic songs for this new tale so it should promise to truly be a whole new world with unbelievable sights… and sounds!
The live-action remake of the classic Arabian tale is likely to attract a large number of viewers for nostalgic reasons. A lot of parents who were young at the time are expected to take their own children along with them. But because this is not exclusively a children’s movie, it could attract a wider audience from elsewhere.
The Arabic folk tale One Thousand and One Nights upon which ALADDIN is based still holds influence in other areas of popular culture. For instance, the massive multiplayer online role playing game Nadirim was heavily inspired by the Arabian themes of the medieval Middle Eastern folk tales. The jackpot game Arabian Nights is also a popular game for fans of this genre, with CasinoGames.ca reviewing many operators who offer this title. Other classic games based on these stories include Prince of Persia and Sonic and the Secret Rings.
There is no doubt that ALADDIN has the potential to be a major success. Aside from the ready-made audience waiting to see the picture, there are other elements which give it the potential to be critically well-received. It is being directed by Guy Ritchie, the English filmmaker responsible for a number of iconic films such as 1998’s Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Snatch in 2000. He also has experience with making Hollywood blockbusters, and his two Sherlock Holmes films raked in a combined total of over $1 billion worldwide. Will Smith is on board as well and will be playing Genie. The 50-year-old is one of the hottest actors in the business (even if his projects of late have been decidedly more spaced apart than they were in the earlier days of his career) and Smith some serious pulling power when it comes to attracting viewers so it could bode well for the house of Mouse.
It will be hard for ALADDIN to beat THE JUNGLE BOOK in terms of worldwide revenue, but there are a number of factors which suggest that it has a strong chance. With a strong team behind the film’s creation and a much-loved story as its launching pad, it could be one of the highest-grossing pictures of 2019 and could likely even pull break some more records.