Films like “Snow White and the Huntsman,” “Jack the Giant Killer” and last year’s “Red Riding Hood” all are part of Hollywood’s recent trend in taking popular fairy tales and turning them into grown-up fare. Not to be exempt from the fun, Hansel and Gretel turn their interests from eating candy to killing witches in the upcoming film “Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters,” due out on March 2.
The film has certainly evolved since it was first announced. At one point producer Adam McKay told MTV News he was eyeing some actors from the “Twilight” cast to star in the film under director Tommy Wirkola (“Dead Snow”). But that notion never moved forward. Ultimately Wirkola found his leading man and lady in the form of Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arterton, and the movie finished shooting earlier this year.
I caught up with Renner when he was promoting “Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol,” and he admitted that the film was definitely a spin on the classic fairy tale for the MTV generation. And that’s exactly why he took it on.
“It’s in a wonderful fairy tale world that’s a bit gritty, a bit fun. It should be a good ride,” he said. “It’s one of those movies that I wanted to do because of Gemma and because it was a fantasy, which is lighter fare than the other movies I’ve done, and I thought it would be fun to be a part of that world.”
Unlike other films of its ilk, “Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters” takes place many years after the fairy tale look place. Let’s just say having a witch almost eat them when they were children left the young candy-happy kids a bit emotionally scarred.
“Fairy tale endings. Doesn’t it sound like they’re supposed to be happy? Well it’s not. So it takes Hansel and Gretel, we last left them killing a witch as children after they were left in the forest to die,” Renner said, setting up the plot. “It’s many years later and they have a grudge against witches so they decide to become bounty hunters and they kill witches for a living. Sounds actually kind of the right thing, I suppose.”
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