Imagine if Peter from Peter Pan and Alice from Alice in Wonderland were siblings. That’s exactly what director Brenda Chapman and purported stars Angelina Jolie and David Oyelowo will attempt to tackle in Come Away, a prequel to both Disney classics in which Peter and Alice attempt to mend the lives of their parents after the tragic death of their eldest brother.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Come Away will take place before Peter and Alice head off to Neverland or Wonderland. Jolie and Oyelowo are in talks to play the fairy-tale duo’s parents.
The saying goes, “one for me, one for them,” meaning, a bona fide actor will choose one blockbuster role to pay the bills for every indie project that feels more in line with their personal goals, but recently, Angelina Jolie has leaned hard into classic reimaginations of fairy tales. The actress has just begun filming the upcoming sequel to 2014’s Maleficent, in which she starred as the evil fairy out to get Aurora (from Sleeping Beauty), and now she will tack on one more “for them” role to her filmography with Come Away. She was also linked to a live-action Bride of Frankenstein movie, but that was scheduled to be part of the mega-franchise tied to Tom Cruise’s disappointing The Mummy.
The actress became an It girl in the late ’90s with roles in cult classics like Hackers, Gia, and Girl, Interrupted (giving a performance for which she won an Oscar, a Golden Globe, and a Screen Actors Guild Award). After starring as the titular character in the Lara Croft: Tomb Raider franchise, lending her voice to the tiger in the animated Kung Fu Panda series, and going a few other big-budget studio films like Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Wanted, and Salt, Jolie’s position as an actress in Hollywood appears to have shifted into blockbuster-only territory. And more recently those blockbusters have been relatively family-friendly. Not surprising for the most famous mother of six on the planet.
Behind the camera is another story. Costarring (as well as cowriting and coproducing) in the critically divisive film By the Sea with her now ex Brad Pitt seemed to be the last straw for Jolie, who has since directed and produced more serious films (Unbroken and Netflix’s First They Killed My Father, for example), and dedicates most of her time to raising her family and conducting humanitarian work across the globe, per a 2017 cover interview with Vanity Fair.
In contrast, this could be a big stepping stone for Oyelowo. He’s wowed in lead roles in prestige films, but as far as more mainstream fare goes, this could be his first big leading role.