Yesterday evening, it was announced that Pride and Prejudice and Anna Karenina's Joe Wright will next take on Peter Pan, directing an origin story for Warner Bros. He'll only be the most recent to try to spice up J.M. Barrie's classic character. Reminisce with us.
Steven Spielberg's critically maligned story about a grown up Peter Pan (Robin Williams, duh) returning to Neverland to fight a vengeful Captain Hook (Dustin Hoffman) was as colorful as it was star-studded, what with your Maggie Smiths and your Gwyneth Paltrows and your gender-bending Glenn Close cameos. Tinkerbell has a million-watt smile. (She's played by Julia Roberts.)
Peter Pan (2003)
Finding Neverland (2004)
Just a year later, we got the J.M. Barrie biopic, starring Johnny Depp and Kate Winslet, which focused on Pan's author and the process of creating his work. There are sobs to be had in this lovely, if a bit saccharine, film.
Peter and the Starcatcher (2012)
Based on a 2004 novel titled Peter and the Starcatchers—note the "s"—this Broadway play was a prequel to the familiar story, featuring an element of Victorian music hall, which sees an orphan transform into the legendary Peter Pan, opposite Wendy Darling's mother, Molly. A critical hit, the show picked up some Tony awards, including one for Christian Borle as the proto-Hook pirate Black Stache.
Once Upon a Time (2013)
Peter Pan has shown up in the third season of ABC's Once Upon a Time, involved in that show's seriously convoluted plot line. Rumplestiltskin is involved. Peter comes off as, well, a little frightening in this clip:
To Be Continued...
Wright makes total sense as a director for a Peter Pan project—even if it's being described as the "the Batman Begins treatment." As a director, he has a penchant for stunning vistas and tracking shots that we can only imagine would be put to good use with a Neverland setting. But Wright's isn't the only Peter Pan project in the works. Gary Ross, who directed the first Hunger Games, has been attached to a Peter and the Starcatchers film, and there's a project called Pan which imagines Peter and Hook as brothers and has Channing Tatum attached to star. Tatum, however, has said he's not playing Pan or or Hook.