Jon M. Chu is gearing up for a Hawaiian roller coaster ride.
The director behind Crazy Rich Asians is in negotiations to helm Disney’s live-action remake of Lilo & Stitch, The Hollywood Reporter has learned.
Dan Lin and Jonathan Eirich of Rideback, the banner behind the billion dollar-grossing live-action remake of Aladdin, are producing. Rideback’s Ryan Halprin is executive producing.
A search for a scribe to work with Chu is now underway. Mike Van Waes wrote the current draft for the project, which has not been greenlit and is still in development.
The original film was written and directed by Dean DeBlois and Chris Sanders, who later found acclaim with How to Train Your Dragon.
The Hawaii-centric story told of the bond formed between a lonely human girl named Lilo and a dog-like alien named Stitch, who is engineered to be a force of destruction. Pursuing aliens, social workers and the idea of the bond of a family all figure into the proceedings.
While not a massive success by modern box-office standards, the well-regarded movie was a bright spot in a down period of Disney’s animation history and launched several direct-to-video sequels as well as several television series. The characters are now among the most sought-after Disney personalities in terms of merchandising.
It is unclear whether Stitch will be released theatrically or on Disney+.
Chu is finding a home at Disney as he recently boarded the Willow series, made by the studio’s Lucasfilm arm, as director and exec producer. The filmmaker, whose Asians grossed over $238 million in 2018, also exec produced and directed episodes of Apple series Home Before Dark.
In the can Chu has In the Heights, the adaptation of the Lin-Manuel Miranda musical that Warner Bros. will release in 2021.
He is repped by UTA, Artists First and Stone Genow.