Whether we talk about the movies, the catchy soundtracks, or the theme parks; Disney shaped how we see the world. An important part of most of our childhoods, the 90s brought with it a splurge of what we would call classics like the Little Mermaid. Can you believe it was first released over thirty years ago? As we began emerging in the tech era, Disney began experimenting with live-action remakes, releasing some of the most captivating adaptions of these classics. We’ve seen some massive hits that not only add to the timelessness of Disney but make them more relatable for future generations to come. Here are our 15 best Disney live-action remakes of all time:
15. Alice in Wonder Land (2010)
This psychedelic adventure was just as impressive as its animated version. Starring A-listers including Johnny Depp, Mia Wasikowska, Anne Hathaway, and the impressionable Helena Bonham Carter, Tim Burton turned this Lewis Carroll story into one of his trademark quirky visual-treat for all ages.
14. 102 Dalmatians (2000)
Similar to its prequel, 102 Dalmatians once again made Glenn Close’s adventures as dognapping Cruella De Vil a big-screen hit.
Director Kevin Lima ensured to highlight Close’s brilliance in portraying her character while introducing fresh faces Ioan Gruffudd and Alice Evans as part of the cast.
13. Lady and the Tramp (2019)
Who doesn’t love the combination of cute dogs and a likable cast? The movie features a star-studded cast including Tessa Thompson, Sam Elliott, Justin Theroux, and Ken Jeong.
The Lady and the Tramp is a live-action remake of the magical 1995s classic that won everyone’s heart.
12. Maleficent (2014)
Angelina Jolie as Maleficent in this Disney villain’s installation was dazzling. With seamless special effects and impressionable acting by Elle Fanning and Sharlto Copley, Maleficent explores the untold tale of the most iconic Disney villain from the animated classic, Sleeping Beauty.
11. Christopher Robin (2018)
A sweet reminder for audiences seeking a little bit of their childhood magic, Winnie the Pooh returns in another adaptation of A. A. Milne’s stories.
Starring Ewan McGregor as a grown-up, family man Christopher Robbin, the tale revisits Winnie the Pooh and his friends. They embark on a relatable journey of rediscovering happiness.
10. Mulan (2020)
One of Disney’s most fearless women leads, Fa Mulan was played by Yifei Liu in this live-action remake of the Chinese tale. The cinematic visuals of the movie add depth to an already stirring story.
Some critics also dubbed it better than its predeceasing animation.
9. Cinderella (2015)
Lily James as Cinderella across Helena Bonham Carter as her iconic fairy Godmother brings surreal, old-school fantasy in this scene-stealing remake.
A classic tale represented by a simple movie successfully inspired audiences everywhere while reminding us of Disney’s charm.
8. Pete’s Dragon (2016)
This movie became a family favorite for adults and children alike, adored by all! A fantasy adventure to find Pete and his dragon, the movie reminds us of storytelling values while capturing audiences with its fantasy adventure.
The cast includes Bryce Dallas Howard, Oakes Fegley, and Wes Bentley.
7. The Jungle Book (2016)
Setting the bar for CGI, Rudyard Kipling’s The Jungle Book adopted naturalistic charm and craftsmanship in this adaptation.
Director Jon Favreau’s 3D animated production of the Disney Classic starred Neel Sethi as Mowgli with Idris Elba, Scarlett Johansson, Ben Kingsley, and Bill Murray voicing his animal friends.
6. Aladdin (2019)
After Robbin William gave a voice to the first animated genie, critics were not expecting a lot from the 2019 remake. However, director Guy Ritchie adapted the story to add to the genie’s character played by Will Smith.
A dazzling splendor of Arabian nights and royalty, the movie also stars Mena Massoud and Naomi Scott.
5. The Lion King (2019)
Jon Favreau brought more technologically marveled visuals and mesmerizing special effects with the Disney remake.
The detail has been looked into excessively to ensure it is as life-like as possible, except for talking animals. Voiced by James Earl Jones once again, Mufasa and his son Simba voiced by JD McCrary and Donald Glover are just as captivating as the animated classic.
4. Beauty and the Beast (2017)
A refreshing take on the 90’s classic, Beauty and the Beast brought all the original magic and splendor from its tale as old as time. Starring Emma Watson as Belle, Dan Stevens as the Beast, and Luke Evans as Gaston, Beauty and the Beast is much more than a nostalgic affair.
The soundtrack also gained a lot of attention with vocals by pop sensations Ariana Grande and John Legend.
3. Mary Poppins Returns (2018)
Decades after her first visit, everyone’s favorite nanny is back! Directed by Rob Marshall and starring Emily Blunt as Mary Poppins, the sequel cast a familiar, family-friend spell for global audiences.
Whether you watched the first part as a child, or you want to introduce your child to the mystical ways of Mary, this movie is bound to mesmerize without sacrificing any of its nostalgic charms. “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious’ sums it up.
2. Enchanted (2007)
Amy Adams and Patrick Dempsey weaved their way into this modern-day fairy tale trope. Enchanted stitches together several Disney Classics, recreating a witty and realistic story.
Kevin Lima’s direction not only captivated children with its funny, feel-good storyline but also young adults who grew up believing in happily ever after.
1. Cruella (2021)
The latest addition to the list, Cruella stars Emma Stone and Emma Thompson across each other as leading ladies. With outstanding costume design, a unique storyline, and a memorable soundtrack, Cruella is a new perspective directed by Craig Gillespie on the existing Dalmatians franchise.
- 101 Dalmatians (1996)
- Dumbo (2019)
Did we miss any worthy title on our list of the best Disney live-action remakes of all time? Let us know in the comments below!