Disney's Nutcracker Movie Adds Big Names

August 23, 2016

Misty Copeland and Eric Tamm in Ratmansky’s Nutcracker. PC Rosalie O’Connor

Here at Dance Magazine, we have a hard time imagining Nutcracker without much dancing. But the more we learn about Disney’s plans for its upcoming live-action movie titled The Nutcracker and the Four Realms, the more we fear how little dancing will be involved.

The good news: Misty Copeland will play the role of “lead ballerina.”

The bad news: It sounds like there will be the only be one dance sequence in the film.

Now, Variety is reporting that Keira Knightley has signed on to star as the Sugar Plum Fairy. Morgan Freeman is in talks to play Drossylmeyer. And Mackenzie Foy (who played Matthew McConaughey’s daughter in Interstellar) will be Clara.

That all makes us wonder, how does dance fit into this? Where will the “lead ballerina” come in? And what will the Sugar Plum Fairy do if not dance?

The plot is reportedly based on E.T.A. Hoffman’s “The Nutcracker and The Mouse King,” the same story that Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov used as source material for their 1892 ballet. However, the choreographers worked off Alexandre Dumas’ adaptation, which was far less dark than the original.

It remains to be seen what direction script writer Ashleigh Powell will take this Disney version. And a release date hasn’t yet been set. But I think it’s safe to expect to see it in theaters during the 2017 or 2018 holiday season.

We’ll keep you updated with more details—and hopefully more news of dancers hired!


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