Disney has released the first image of Tom Hanks as Geppetto from their upcoming live-action film version of Pinocchio which will be out on Disney+ in September, and fans are simultaneously excited and creeped out. Hanks stars as Geppetto, the wood-carver who creates a doll he names Pinocchio and treats him as a son, and who later comes to life thanks to a magic wish.
Robert Zemeckis, the director famous for turning Hanks into a weird uncanny valley version of himself in The Polar Express, directs the film, and it appears that has restrained himself with this version of Geppetto, modeling him as close as possible to the version that appeared in Disney’s 1940 animated version. The nostalgia factor ramped up the excitement for some fans.
Other fans are slightly less charitable in their view of Geppetto.
Co-starring with Hanks are Benjamin Evan Ainsworth who voices Pinocchio, Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Jiminy Cricket, Cynthia Erivo as the Blue Fairy, Luke Evans as the Coachman, Keegan-Michael Key as Honest John, and Lorraine Bracco as Sofia the Seagull, a new character created for the live-action film.
This version is not to be confused with Guillermo del Toro and Mark Gustafson’s stop-motion animated version of the tale which is slated the premiere on Netflix in December.