Warner Bros. is looking to remake a live-action adaptation of Roald Dahl’s The Witches with writer-director Robert Zemeckis at the helm. Oscar-winner Anne Hathaway (The Dark Knight Rises, Interstellar) has already taken the role of the evil Grand High Witch, who wants to turn the child of the world into mice.
Variety now reports that fellow Oscar-winner Octavia Spencer (The Help, The Shape of Water) is now in talks to take the grandmother role. Along with newcomers Jahzir Bruno and Codie-Lei Eastick expected to take roles as the kids.
Spencer’s casting would confirm my previous reporting at OmegaUnderground that the grandmother role would be out to black actresses. HN Entertainment had word that Warner Bros. and Zemeckis was interested in casting Spencer’s The Help co-star Viola Davis, that obviously didn’t pan out.
Filming is said to be taking place at Warner Bros. Studios Leavesden in the United Kingdom with Alabama/Lousiana possibly being eyed for secondary Stateside locations. As the film takes place in the American South (Alabama) during 1969 with the role of Luke being played by a young African-American actor.
We also reported that Aquaman cinematographer Don Burgess has joined the film.
The Witches isn’t the only Roald Dahl live-action project WB is developing as Paddington’s Paul King is set to direct a Willy Wonka movie that takes place years before the events of Charlie and The Chocolate Factory.
Warner Bros. has set a release date for The Witches on October 16th, 2020.