EXCLUSIVE: Joachim Rønning, who helmed Jerry Bruckheimer’s Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Men Tell No Tales for Disney, is in talks to direct another Disney tentpole franchise: the sequel to the studio’s 2014 worldwide box office hit Maleficent. Angelina Jolie confirmed to Deadline last month that she will to return as the lead character based on the nemesis first introduced in the studio’s 1959 fairy tale Sleeping Beauty. The project is expected to go before the cameras in the first quarter of 2018.
Jez Butterworth and Linda Woolverton had been working on the script for producer Joe Roth, we’ve been told. Rønning also has been attached to direct the screen version of Michael Crichton’s final novel Micro for Amblin Entertainment and producer Frank Marshall and is expected back on the next Pirates installment for Disney and Bruckheimer. Rønning also is working with Bruckheimer writing and attached to direct Origins, an original pitch that Paramount picked up pre-emptively. His brother Andreas is working with him on the script.
Rønning’s previous outing Dead Men Tell No Tales ended up making $794.1M worldwide for the studio, dominating the Memorial Day weekend this year with a $69.2M opening weekend.
Maleficent, which dropped during the same weekend three years earlier, broke records with its opening weekend of $69.4M and went onto to make $758.5M worldwide.
Jolie’s First They Killed My Father is Cambodia’s submission for the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar. The movie, directed and co-written by Jolie, is about author and human rights activist Loung Ung’s life under the rule of the deadly Khmer Rouge. It premiered in Telluride then went on to Toronto, where it won strong praise. The story is told through Ung’s eyes, from the age of 5, when the Khmer Rouge came to power in Cambodia.
Rønning is repped by UTA and Brillstein Entertainment Partners. Jolie is repped by UTA, Media Talent Group and Sloane Offer.