Out of all the projects to come out of Disney’s ongoing cycle of children’s lit remakes and fairy-tale spin-offs, few have been more intriguing than Christopher Robin, a largely live-action, decades-later sequel to A.A. Milne’s Winnie The Pooh stories that’s being scripted by Alex Ross Perry, the caustic indie writer-director of The Color Wheel, Listen Up Philip, and Queen of Earth. Some among the arthouse faithful had their fingers crossed in the hope that Perry might end up directing the film himself. After all, his Listen Up Philip producer, David Lowery, made a successful and similarly unlikely leap with Pete’s Dragon.
But alas, that’s not to be. As Variety reports, Christopher Robin is now set to be directed by Marc Forster. The Swiss journeyman director’s career has included the likes of Monster’s Ball, World War Z, The Kite Runner, and (relevant to this project) Finding Neverland. But he also directed Stranger Than Fiction, which showed that he could at least keep pace with an oddball script. To resurrect an old line in trying times: we remain, as ever, cautiously optimistic.
Meanwhile, Fox Searchlight is already filming its own Winnie The Pooh project, a biopic of A.A. Milne, which was until recently titled Goodbye Christopher Robin. The project, which stars Domhnall Gleeson as Milne, is being directed by Simon Curtis (My Week With Marilyn, Woman In Gold) and was co-witten by Frank Cottrell Boyce, the English screenwriter best known for his collaborations with Michael Winterbottom.