In the decade since Disney began developing its intriguing, martial arts-flavoured take on the Snow White story, the world has moved on. But with two Snow-based films already set to arrive this year, the Mouse House has been nudging the project – known since last year as Order Of The Seven – further and further away from dwarves, mirrors and, y'know, anything resembling the Snow White tale. And now Saoirse Ronan has signed on to star.
VFX supervisor and ads director Michael Gracey is still set to make his film debut with the story, which finds Ronan as Olivia Sinclair, a British woman in 19th century Hong Kong who seeks out the assistance of a centuries old group of warriors who now live as jaded outlaws.
She’ll need their help (and they, in turn, will need hers) as an evil empress is on the rise back to power and the warriors see the chance to reclaim their former glory.
According to Variety, Disney is looking to bolster the film’s chances outside of the US by recruiting talent from China, Russia and Japan for a global team of heroes.
The film itself has morphed several times over the years and has seen at least one director (Francis Lawrence) come and go. During that time, Michael Chabon, Josh Harmon, Scott Elder, Scott Moore and Jon Lucas have all had a crack at the script, with the latest draft cranked out by Jayson Rothwell and Michael DeBruyn.
With a shoot planned for the autumn, this one should avoid the avalanche of Snow films this year and offer something truly different in 2013. Fight choreography expert Yuen Woo-Ping had been considering directing back in 2005, and we’re hoping he’ll stick around to help with the action sequences…