Oprah Winfrey's Project ‘A Wrinkle in Time’ Gets Full Speed with Disney; Cast Include Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling

Sep 09, 2016 09:17 AM EDT
Oprah Winfrey is going to be contributing to Disney's second attempt at adapting Madeline L'Engle's classic novel of A Wrinkle in Time.  She has bought stars Mindy Kaling and Reese Witherspoon for the ride.
Oprah Winfrey will be Disney's adaptation of "A Wrinkle in Time"

A Wrinkle in Time is a classic story that was first published in 1963.  It received several accolades including the Newbery Medal (best book award for younger readers) and it has been adapted into a movie before, with bad results.  However, now Oprah Winfrey and Ava DuVernay (director of Selma) want to adapt the work again, and it has a $100 million dollar budget with Disney.  This is what is known Oprah's project of A Wrinkle in Time release date, along with her co-stars of Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling. 


Who Has Oprah Got Involved in A Wrinkle in Time?

 

According to CinemaBlend, it is reported that Oprah has got Reese Witherspoon and Mindy Kaling joining the cast of A Wrinkle in Time.  So far, it is not confirmed who they will be playing, but Witherspoon could be playing Mrs. Whatsit and Kaling could be playing Mrs. Who. 

If you are not familiar with the story, it focuses on Meg Murry, who is a smart and kind of nerdy girl who has a father that has gone missing.  She has a brother named Charles Wallace, a five-year prodigy who is scarily smart.  Since these characters will need to be played by younger actors, and are probably not cast yet. 

Meg, Charles Wallace, and her friend Calvin discover the house of Mrs. Whatsit, Mrs. Who, and Mrs. Witch.  They are supernatural beings, and Mrs. Whatsit is kind of old hobo figure. Something tells me that a lot of makeup will be used on Witherspoon if she is playing this role.  Mindy Kaling will be Mrs. Who, who is essentially a stereotypical librarian figure, complete with thick glasses.  As for Oprah, she will be playing Mrs. Which, who is this very unearthly ghostly figure that could easily be a product of special effects. 


What to Expect from A Wrinkle in Time

 

Before the whole genre of young adult science fiction came about with book series like Divergent, The Maze Runner, and The Hunger Games, this book really was one of the first to capture a very Twilight Zone speculative fiction story and target it for younger readers. 

The story of A Wrinkle in Time is a science fiction story about Meg's missing father, who discovers a tesseract.  A tesseract the wrinkle in time from the title, and it takes Meg's father to another world. It is Mrs. Which, Mrs. Who, and Mrs. Whatsit who help Meg, her brother, and Calvin transport to this same world to get him back. 

The world that they go to is a world dominated by a living brain simply known as IT.  Everyone in this world is essentially under IT's mental control, and that part of the book is kind of creepy.  There is this great sequence where Meg and her friend meet a man with red eyes, and this part could be really scary for kids watching this film. 

Gospel Herald readers might be interested in knowing that Madeline L'Engle had a strong Episcopalian background, and it showed in her works. Without revealing too much, A Wrinkle in Time even ends with a character using a Scripture to overcome the evil of this other world she is trapped in.   

Second Time the Charm for A Wrinkle In Time?

 

In 2003, Walt Disney attempted a movie version of Madeline L'Engle's classic work, but it was made for TV.  It only has a 5.7 rating on imdb, and as someone who enjoyed the original book, this film was not a good adaptation.  It feels like Disney was trying to do another great franchise to promote, and it did not work out well. 

One of the reasons for its failure is that it was clearly on a made-for-TV budget, but the sets and effects required for such a story would require a level of effects equal to something like Avatar, Star Wars, or Lord of the Rings.  The audience has to believe that these characters are going to other planets and are meeting creatures of different worlds.  It has to be done with a big budget, but Disney and Oprah have that covered this time around. 


A Wrinkle in Time Sequel Already in the Works?

 

A Wrinkle in Time is actually one of five books in what has been called the Time Quintet science fiction series.  Chances are, if the first film is a hit, then Disney will no doubt green-light all of these other books. 

The second is A Wind in the Door, which takes place not too long after the first book.  The third book, A Swiftly Tilting Planet, takes place years later, so if it takes years to make the movie on this one, it will be worth the wait. Many Waters focuses on the two minor twin characters from the books, Sandy and Dennys. The last book, An Acceptable Time, tries to join a character named Polyhymia O'Keefe, who was in Madeline L'Engle's other works, into the Murray family.  

As for the release date for the new film, look for it sometime in 2018. 

Tags : A Wrinkle in Time, Oprah Winfrey, Reese Witherspoon, Mindy Kaling