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Moana Live-Action Remake Finds Its Director

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According to The Hollywood Reporter, Tony Award winner Thomas Kail has been tapped to direct Disney’s upcoming Moana live-action remake of 2016’s acclaimed animated musical fantasy movie.


Kail gained recognition for his directorial work on the Broadway productions of Lin-Manuel Miranda’s In the Heights and Hamilton musicals. Besides working in theater, he also has experienced directing shows include a few episodes of 2 Broke Girls and Fosse/ Verdon, with the latter earning him an Emmy nomination for Outstanding Directing for a Limited Series. The live-action adaptation of Moana marks Kail’s feature narrative directorial debut.

Who’s Involved in the Moana Remake?

The Moana live-action remake will be produced by Dwayne Johnson, who plans to return for the remake, as well as Dany and Hiram Garcia through their Seven Bucks Productions banner and Beau Flynn for Flynn Picture Co. It will be executive produced by Auli‘i Cravalho — the voice of Moana in the 2016 film — and Scott Sheldon of Flynn Picture Co. Jared Bush, who wrote the screenplay for Moana, will also take part in the remake’s production alongside Samoan industry pro Dana Ledoux Miller.

The original was directed by Ron Clements and John Musker. It was not only a commercial success with a gross of over $600 million, but it also earned positive reviews from critics and earned two Oscar nominations including Best Animated Feature and Best Original Song.