Guillermo Del Toro will team up with the Jim Henson Company to produce a stop-motion film adaptation of Pinocchio for Netflix.
Del Toro's version of Carlo Collodi's 1880s novel will set the story in 1930s Italy. Netflix describes the film as a "lifelong passion project" for Del Toro, who recently won multiple Academy Awards with his film The Shape of Water.
“No art form has influenced my life and my work more than animation and no single character in history has had as deep of a personal connection to me as Pinocchio," said Del Toro in a statement. "In our story, Pinocchio is an innocent soul with an uncaring father who gets lost in a world he cannot comprehend. He embarks on an extraordinary journey that leaves him with a deep understanding of his father and the real world. I’ve wanted to make this movie for as long as I can remember. After the incredible experience we have had on Trollhunters, I am grateful that the talented team at Netflix is giving me the opportunity of a lifetime to introduce audiences everywhere to my version of this strange puppet-turned-real-boy.”
Del Toro will co-write the script with Over The Garden Wall's Patrick McHale, while The Fantastic Mr. Fox's Mark Gustafson will co-direct. The stop-motion animation will be produced at the Jim Henson Company. Artist Guy Davis will serve as co-production designer, taking artistic cues from artist Gris Grimly's Pinocchio design, seen here.
“Throughout his distinguished career, Guillermo has exhibited mastery in inspiring people through his magical worlds filled with unforgettable and magnificent characters, from the monsters in Pan’s Labyrinth to the aquatic creature in The Shape of Water," said Netflix's Vice President of Kids and Family Melissa Cobb. "We are incredibly excited to expand our relationship with Guillermo and we know that his deeply touching vision for bringing Pinocchio to life on Netflix will be embraced by audiences the world over.”
Production on Pinocchio is expected to begin this year, with no projected release date announced.