The Walt Disney Studios just joined the production of Steven Spielberg’s film adaptation of Roald Dahl‘s The BFG. According to Disney’s official press release, this will mark the first time Spielberg will direct a Disney-branded movie.
Spielberg released a statement regarding the team-up with Disney:
In more than 40 years of making movies, I have been on the producing end of a number of films for The Walt Disney Company, but never as a director. It is a special joy to be in the director’s chair as we start ‘The BFG,’ alongside my long-time friends and film collaborators Kathy Kennedy, who introduced me to this project, Frank Marshall and Melissa Mathison. Together with them and Disney, there are many reasons why I am so excited about this joint venture.
DreamWorks Studios CEO Michael Wright added his thoughts on the collaboration:
This partnership speaks to the spirit of storytelling and the kinds of movies that we make here. Over the years, we have enjoyed a fruitful collaboration, and we couldn’t be more excited to be working with Disney in this expanded capacity on ‘The BFG.’
Spielberg is reuniting with E.T. screenwriter Melissa Mathison on the project. Production for The BFG is currently underway in Vancouver, and the film is set for a theatrical release of July 1st, 2016.