Following the Disney+-exclusive release of Disenchanted, the first film’s director, Kevin Lima, has spoken out. He discussed Any Adams’ performance as Giselle, Disney’s lack of faith in the first film, and the script’s origins with The Hollywood Reporter. Check out an excerpt here:
“How could you do a modern-day Sound of Music?” was Lima’s prompt for the script. Like that film’s nun Maria and Naval Captain Von Trapp, Giselle and Robert come from very different backgrounds.
Lima also discussed the studio’s push for an established actress and his determination to cast Amy Adams:
“Amy is the lifeblood of Enchanted, and without that performance, the movie wouldn’t be half of what it is,” the director says.
“The marketing department didn’t have faith that the movie was worth making,” Lima says. “They didn’t think boys would go to see this movie, and the marketing department did their best to shut down the movie a couple of times while we were in pre-production. But I was really lucky that [Disney execs] Nina Jacobson and Dick Cook believed in the film and kept pushing us forward.”
“A perfect storm of a change of executives and Hollywood politics made it so that I was uninvited to the party, unfortunately,” he says of Disenchanted. “It was a very, very sad turn. I haven’t seen the movie; I haven’t read the script. So I’m going to experience the characters that I helped create, grow and live on as the audience does.”
No offense to director Adam Shankman (who was in the running to direct the first movie), but this is exactly what I was afraid of. Disenchanted lacks the heart, humor, and fantastic performances that made Enchanted memorable. I wish I was surprised by the talk of a gender divide, but you hear this from Disney and other companies all the time. They say “boys won’t like” anything that isn’t about dinosaurs or giant robots. I wholeheartedly agree with Lima that the first movie’s approach to satire is one of the major reasons it works. I’m glad he turned around what would have been a more mean-spirited spoof. I think replacing him at the helm of Disenchanted was a big mistake and part of why the movie sucks, but it is what it is.