x Abu Dhabi, UAEWednesday 24 January 2018

Film news

A new star for footloose, a war movie for Radcliffe and a Wizard of Oz prequel coming up.

The classic 1980s dance flick Footloose has been near the front of Hollywood's remakes queue for some time now, but the project looked in serious danger when the heartthrob Zac Efron (who was scheduled to play the lead), backed out. In the past week however, it was revealed that the reboot will happen after all and that the professional dancer (with a limited acting record) Kenny Wormald has been cast in the Kevin Bacon role. Dennis Quaid has also been confirmed as the movie's chief antagonist, Reverend Moore.

With filming on the final Harry Potter movie now wrapped, some predicted the series' stars would struggle to find work. Not so, it seems. Daniel Radcliffe's next movie after Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows pt.2 will be a remake of the classic First World War film All Quiet on the Western Front. Considered one of the greatest anti-war stories ever told, the original won the Best Picture Oscar in 1930 and tells the story of a young German soldier's grim experience of trench warfare.

After the huge success of Tim Burton's Alice in Wonderland revamp, it's little surprise that Hollywood studios have been searching for other classic fantasy stories to put to screen. It has been announced that the Spider-Man series' helmer Sam Raimi will direct a Wizard of Oz prequel, with Robert Downey Jnr tipped to star. Oz the Great and Powerful will be based on the Oz books, written by L Frank Baum, and follow the notorious wizard's early life, which began as a circus performer from Omaha.

The writer-director behind The Sixth Sense and Unbreakable, M Night Shyamalan, has been struggling a little of late - his last two movies have faltered with critics and audiences - but that could be about to change. A number of Hollywood sources have reported that he is gearing up for another movie with his greatest muse, Bruce Willis. Little is known about the project, except it's not likely to be a sequel to either of the above movies. Gwyneth Paltrow and Bradley Cooper are also rumored to be attached.

The Eastern Promises director, David Cronenberg, looks set to turn his attention to quantum physics. The Canadian filmmaker (Crash, A History of Violence) has expressed plans to helm an adaptation of the US novelist Jonathan Lethem's 1997 novel, As She Climbed Across the Table - a metaphysical love story about a woman obsessed with a void. The scientific romance might take a few years to materialise however, because Cronenberg is currently at work two projects.

Disney has revealed plans to convert its classic 1994 animated tale The Lion King into 3D. The much-loved movie is expected to return to screens in late 2011 or early 2012, some time after the already confirmed 3D re-release of Beauty and the Beast. The animation house seems increasingly content to draw new projects from its existing cannon - it also recently revealed that Who Framed Roger Rabbit 2 is in the works, with the 1988 film's original writers on board.