Seeing as last week we got an announcement that Disney is remaking The Hunchback of Notre Dame as part of their live action remake movie trend, I thought it would be a good time to do a check on all the “new” versions of Hunchback that have been announced in recent memory.

Now in my tenure of running this blog, counting the new Disney/Josh Gad version there has been SIX “new” versions that have been announced and nothing has gotten made as of yet.

Josh Brolin picture image
Josh Brolin

The first one was the Josh Brolin version.
This was to be a “jazzy” version with Zhang Yimou slated to direct.  Now Brolin has been on and off with this one since like 2011. Back in May 2018 he said he was still trying with this version but a New York Times article back in June of 2018 used the word “was” in reference to Brolin’s Hunchback. But who knows? I’m not holding my breath for this version.  

Max Ryan picture image
Max Ryan

Then we have the Max Ryan version which was to be directed by Chuck Russell. This one I believe was announced in 2014 with the news of Russell directing being announced in 2015. I think had a 2018 release date.  But in so far nothing has come out about it. 

This version actually has a bit of a history since in was based on script from 2007 that had a cast mentioned with it. Most noticeably Monica Cruz as Esmeralda and John Rhys-Davies as Frollo. This is also the version with “Figment.”  Which I think for a while was on the IMBD page.    You can read more for a bit of a summary of that 2007 concept here.  Because it’s very weird
Anyway still no news on this version. 

Esmeralda Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame singing "God Help the Outcast" picture image
Esmeralda singing “God Help the Outcast” Disney Hunchback of Notre Dame

Then there is the lesser known Peter Cherin’s version. This was one was announced in 2015 as an Esmeralda POV movie. The idea was originally announced in 2013 a idea for Once Upon a Time. There has been no news of this version since 2015.   

Peter Dinklage Quasimodo picture image
Peter Dinklage

Then we have the  Charles Dance and Peter Dinklage  TV collab. This news was reported back in October 2017. So it’s still fairly new and there was a report back in May 2018  that mentioned the project.   So I assume it’s still in the works.

Idris Elba picture imahe
Idris Elba

Also back in May of 2018, Idris Elba announced he was going to take on a Hunchback version for Netflix. This was the most recent project till last week. Again not a big deal that we haven’t gotten any follow-ups yet, it’s still pretty new.  

Josh Gad for Quasimodo picture image
Josh Gad

That brings us to the Live-action remake with Josh Gad. I looked at Gad’s twitter and he has two posts (at the time I looked at his feed)  that hinted Hunchback. One of him reading the Disney version’s art book and one him outside of Notre Dame with text that said “the Bells bells bells” etc.

I do find a little interesting since Gad was already in a Live action Disney remake as Le Fou and he voices Olaf that maybe this version is a bit of a passion project. That Gad is the one who convinced Disney to do this and not the other way around. I could be wrong, I’m probably wrong. We will have to see.

So we have a race on our hands. Which Hunchback version will be the first to get released to a general audience? Or at least announces some casting news first?
Only time will tell.     

There has actually been some decent amount of Hunchback related stuff that popped up in 2015 opposed the last few years where there has been much other that Josh Brolin popping up to say something about his movie that will never be I’m guessing.

So 2015 started off with the sad news. On October 24th 2015 Maureen O’Hara, who played Esmeralda in the 1939 movie version of Hunchback passed away at the age of  95.  The 1939 version is considered to be one of the best Hunchback version. It was also O’Hara’s American debut.

Musicals next; The Notre Dame de Paris 10 year anniversary tour in Korea which was French language. Notre Dame de Paris in Asian isn’t anything new but this was the first time in a while for a French Production to be presented.  There also a new Italian cast the uses member from the original cast. But that is set not next year, but this cast has been catching my attention and just recently did that cast come out so yeah, I’m including it here.

There was also the Disney Hunchback musical at the Paper mills Play house in March and April. Since it didn’t go to broadway there will more local productions so keep an ear out if one should be performed near you and it still might go to broadway someday, never say die. Also the cast recording of the Paper Mills and Lo Jolla casting is coming out next month so preorder here.

Also in April, Josh Groban did a cover of Le Temps de Cathedral on his Stages album. I wouldn’t say it did much to help Notre Dame de Paris’ popularity but people who didn’t know might have heard it so that is great.

Let’s what else. Eva Mendes and Ryan Gosling named their baby Esmeralda which they directly sited Hunchback as being a favorite novel of their. First is a little funning because I a while ago I was looking up Celebrities and their favorite books and Hunchback never came up. Les Mis did. I sort of abandoned the idea due to how pretentious and/or how self severing their picks were, so I’m glad some actors liked the book.

But the BIGGEST news of the year is that there are 2, not one but 2 Hunchback movies in the works. One has been in the works for a while and is a independent movie from some actor who was in the second Sex and the City movie, Max Ryan. This version I don’t even know what to say. Everyt ime I try to make sense of it I’m reminded that there is a giant and a figment in the cast list and The Mask directors is going to direct so my expectations for this movie are low to hoping ti hilariously bad, but we’ll see maybe we’ll be surprised and it will be a really good version. Strangers things happen.

The second movie seems to be an off-shot of an idea for Once Upon a Time from 2013, a movie for Esmeralda’s POV, which I’m excited about. There hasn’t been a Esmeralda centric Hunchback version since the 1950’s and that was mostly a French movie. For Hollywood there has been a Hunchback version focusing on Esmeralda since Theda Bara’s 1917 movie The Darling of Paris. Not much is known about this movie other than it’s being spearhead by Peter Cherin and will focus on Esmeralda. I hope this movie is good and happens, you never know with movies.

Let’s hope 2016 has more Hunchback stuff!

Esmeralda (Gina Lollobrigida) with Phoebus (Jean Danet), 1956 Hunchback of Notre Dame picture image

Esmeralda (Gina Lollobrigida) with Phoebus (Jean Danet), 1956 Hunchback of Notre Dame

Last week it was announced  that one Peter Chernin was developing a new Hunchback of Notre Dame movie from Esmeralda’s perspective. This is a big deal for a few reasons.

First and foremost this idea originally was announced in 2013 as an idea for Once Upon a Time. Once it was announced that was the last anyone heard about it. It’s very unclear if this movie idea came from the Once Upon a Time idea or is a separate concept.

Second this is the first movie since the freaking lost films that Esmeralda as the focus character. Evert movie version since 1923 has been a Quasimodo movie. This also mean most movie versions made are vanity projects lead by a 40 something male actor looking to play emotional yet physically demanding role.

Looking in to Peter Chernin who is not and actor or a director but a business man turned producer who has his own production, Chernin Entertainment. So it’s more likely that this film will happen than other film version that are being made who wanted to be made. Though Max Ryan’s upcoming version which is set to start filming in Serbia is an independent movie.

Also all the new outlets that have report on this are calling it a Live-action. This that either they are connecting it to the Disney version because of the trend of live-action Disney movies is REALLY big right now, they are confused or does Chernin have titles to Disney? That is unclear and it’s still really early in development. But it’s fun that there are two new Hunchback movies in the works, good or bad.

Also one person on http://screenrant.com/hunchback-notre-dame-esmeralda-retelling/ implied Mila Kunis, Penelope Cruz, Aishwarya Rai, or Vanessa Hudgens for the role of Esmeralda. To which I say;

maybe, interesting because her sister Moinca was listed in negotiation for Esmeralda for the Max Ryan movie in like 2007, pushing it on age and her Hollywood debut never really panned out but we could get a kickass dance number if they cast a Bollywood actress, and lastly nope please no on Hudgens.

 

I hope they give the role to a new actress but I doubt they will but it will depend on Esmeralda background who they cast. I wish they would go with Esmeralda’s original backstory but they don’t I don’t care that much.

 

Who do you want to play Esmeralda?