The live action project is based on the 1816 story “The Nutcracker and the Mouse King” by E.T.A. Hoffmann in which a girl named Clara is charged by her parents with taking care of a Christmas toy Nutcracker doll — which comes to life and defeats an evil Mouse King with seven heads.
Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and choreographers Marius Petipa and Lev Ivanov turned an Alexandre Dumas adaptation of the story into the ballet “The Nutcracker” in 1892.
Lasse Hallström came on board in March to direct from Ashleigh Powell’s script. Mark Gordon is producing. Lindy Goldstein is executive producing.
Sam Dickerman and Allison Erlikhman are overseeing the project for Disney. Sara Smith is overseeing for The Mark Gordon Company.
Variety reported Wednesday that “Interstellar” star Foy had joined the project as Clara. Should Freeman’s deal go through, he would play Drosselmeyer, the mysterious godfather of Clara. Copeland will play the lead ballerina.
Freeman was most recently seen in “Now You See Me 2” and will next appear in Paramount-MGM’s “Ben-Hur.” He’s repped by CAA and Sloane, Offer.