Though they might be more sound to the idea now that he’s got a successful, possible Oscar-winning film of his hands (with “Flight”), the last call Robert Zemeckis got from his old stomping-ground at Disney was one in which the Mouse informed the one-time hitmaker they’d no longer be footing the bill for his mo-cap remake of the Beatle’s “Yellow Submarine”.
Originally set to lens in December of 2011, with Cary Elwes, Dean Lennox Kelly, Peter Serafinowicz and Adam Campbell playing the fab four, “Yellow Submarine” would’ve combined the same state-of-the-art special effects Zemeckis had applied to “Beowulf” and “The Polar Express” with 16 original classic Beatles tunes.
Having lost them a pound of money on the flop “Mars Needs Moms”, Disney believed Zemeckis’s “Submarine” would likely sink them further into the red if they proceeded.
The film was scrapped, as was Disney’s production slate with Zemeckis – the experience of “Yellow Submarine” evoking a waning interest in CGI mo-cap movies.
Asked by Total Film magazine whether he might consider trying to get “Yellow Submarine” up sometime later, Zemeckis offered a rather surprising answer. Ostensibly thankful Disney pressed the stop button on the movie, the “Back to the Future” helmer said he’s against the idea of a remake now.
“That would have been a great one to bring the Beatles back to life. But it’s probably better not to be remade – you’re always behind the 8-ball when do you a remake. It gets harder and harder [to make movies]. With the current state of the industry, it’s difficult to stay passionate about it. The hardest thing for a filmmaker as he’s aging is saying, “How much more of this crap can I take?” It’s tough, I can only do it if I have a script to believe in. Like Flight”.
Obviously the whole “Yellow Submarine” incident at Disney left Zemeckis a little bruised – but not so bruised that he wouldn’t show his face at the studio again, he’s currently developing a “Who Framed Roger Rabbit?” sequel with the shingle.