New Line Cinema’s new iteration of The Nutcracker now has a director. Deadline reports that Adam Shankman (Hairspray) has signed on to the project. Scripted by Darren Lemke (Jack the Giant Killer), the film goes back to the original 1815 book The Nutcracker and the Mouse King by E.T.A. Hoffman and centers on a young girl who is taken on an adventure by her now animated wooden toy soldier. The tone is said to be in the vein of Alice in Wonderland (as is every fantasty/adventure movie in development these days), as it’s a drama with action and a love story. The project is reportedly shaping up to be Shankman’s next film, and New Line is aiming for a holiday 2013 release.
While Shankman’s resume is hit and miss, his musical work is pretty impressive and he should bring a fun version of the classic story to life. Universal also has a version of The Nutcracker in the works with Rise of the Planet of the Apes producers John Mann and Jon Gunn onboard. Shankman recently wrapped the 80’s-centered musical Rock of Ages with Tom Cruise and Julianne Hough.