Questlove has been a pretty busy guy lately — but not so busy that he can’t take on just one more high-profile project, potentially his biggest one yet. While he’s got a lot on his plate — in addition to continuing his role as The Roots’ bandleader on The Tonight Show, he’s launching a publishing imprint, keeping up his award-winning Questlove Supreme podcast, and executive-producing a docuseries about J Dilla — he’s about to become the director of Disney’s latest live-action remake project: The Aristocats.
For those who haven’t been putting their Disney Plus subscription to work, The Aristocats follows the adventures of a family of rich kitties (hence, “Aristocats” — get it?) who are left a massive fortune in their owner’s will. Her vengeful butler, however, catnaps them and abandons them in the French countryside, and its only with the the help of O’Malley, a streetwise alley cat, that they can make it back to Paris and the fortune that awaits them.
The 1970 animated original was distinguished by its extensive use of jazz to drive home the themes of the plot — O’Malley hangs with a swingin’ band, while the Duchess and her kittens are classically-trained musicians (it’s a cartoon, just go with it) — so Questlove, a musical encyclopedia with legs, is the perfect person to direct a live remake. And, as a bonus, some of the more racially insensitive caricatures can be quietly removed. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Quest’s also overseeing the music for the film and producing via his Two One Five Entertainment company — along with The Roots partners Black Thought and Shawn Gee, as well as Will Gluck and Zarah Zohlman. Stay tuned for more news to come.