Billy Magnussen has joined the live-action Lilo & Stitch movie in an undisclosed role.
Deadline has reported that James Bond actor Billy Magnussen is the latest addition to the upcoming live-action Lilo & Stitch adaptation for Disney+. Magnussen joins the previously announced cast members Zach Galifianakis and Maia Kealoha, who is set to play Lilo. There’s no word yet on who Magnussen or Galifianakis will play.
Since the currently uncast roles of Lilo’s older sister Nani and her boyfriend David will likely be actors of Polynesian descent, it seems likely Magnussen could play a new character or one of the aliens. Rumors say that Galifianakis may be playing Pleakley, one of the aliens pursuing the escaped Stitch, aka Experiment 626 in the original Lilo & Stitch. This could mean that Magnussen might be playing Jumba or Gantu, if not a new character altogether.
Depending on how closely the live-action Lilo & Stitch follows the plot of the original, Magnussen could also play a character from the spin-off Disney Channel show. For now, we’ll have to stick to rumors and insider reports to guess who Magnussen could be playing. Otherwise, Disney will surely announce its official cast list and its characters eventually.
The original Lilo & Stitch told the story of a young girl named Lilo who adopts an escaped alien experiment which she dubs Stitch. Stitch also happens to be an alien specifically designed for maximum destruction. The movie followed the unlikely pair as Stitch acclimated to having an ohana while also escaping from the aliens and Earth agents in pursuit.
While there are plenty of people who loved the original Lilo & Stitch, it remains to be seen if the live-action adaptation can recapture that magic. The live-action Disney adaptations have undoubtedly made money; they often receive middling to bad reviews. Hopefully, this adaptation can break that trend.
They certainly seem to be recruiting the right team for the job. Oscar-nominee Dean Fleischer Camp (Marcel the Shell With Shoes On) was brought on board to direct the film. If Dean Fleischer Camp can entertain people, charm them, and earn an Oscar nomination for a feature-length film about a stop-motion shell, maybe he can do the same for a live-action Disney movie.
The Lilo & Stitch live-action adaptation was written by Chris Kekaniokalani Bright from a previous draft by Mike Van Waes. There have also been rumors and reports that Chris Sanders, the original voice of Stitch throughout all other Disney projects, would also be voicing the (presumably) CGI alien in the film. Sanders also co-wrote and co-directed the animated original with Dean DeBlois.
The original Lilo & Stitch was largely loved by critics and audiences alike, and it also brought in over $273 million at the global box office. Since the live-action adaptation is reported to be released on Disney+, it seems like Disney doesn’t believe that it will perform quite as well as the original. We’re still a fairly long way off from the film’s May 10, 2024, release date, so we’ll keep you updated on any casting announcements or major news about the film until then.