EXCLUSIVE: Disney and director Mark Romanek are parting ways on Cinderella, the revisionist fairy tale movie that has Cate Blanchett attached to star. It’s all going down now, but I’m told that Romanek and the studio have differing views on how to tell the story. Romanek’s is darker, and it’s too dark for this to turn out to be a fairy tale ending. The studio has a script by Chris Weitz and Aline Brosh McKenna, and Disney began testing young actresses for the title role late last year, a group that includes Saoirse Ronan. It’s certain they’ll go out to directors quickly, trying to keep on track to get the picture into production by the summer. Simon Kinberg is producing. Romanek, who helmed Never Let Me Go and One Hour Photo, has dropped from films before. The helmer, renowned for his commercials and video work, exited The Wolfman again because he had a darker vision than the studio was looking for. In hindsight, that didn’t work out badly at all for him.
Disney just confirmed to me that this is happening, and the studio gave me this statement: “The Walt Disney Studios and Mark Romanek have parted ways on Disney’s Cinderella project. We are committed to moving the project forward and have begun the search for a new director. The team here at Disney respects Mark as both a director and a friend, and we hope to find something to work on together in the future.”