News broke yesterday that My LIttle Pony: Friendship is Magic creator Lauren Faust is going to direct Medusa, a full length animated feature, for Sony. This is awesome for many reasons.
¶ The film was co-developed and will be co-written by Beat contributor Todd Alcott (along with his writing partner Holly Golden.) Perhaps at some point we can persuade Todd to swing by in his Maybach and explain to us what the protagonist wants.
¶ Faust’s credentials for directing a movie are impeccable; MLP: Friendship is Magic is a cultural phenomenon and her DC Nation shorts Super Best FRiends Forever gained a cult following. She’s the Tumblr nation embodied. And as the success of Frozen and Maleficient shows, stories about young women coming of age appeal to a lot of people, including young women coming of age—and this is an audience that can make money for movie studios,and they realize it.
And now an actual director with experience in the target audience has been given the gig. Given all the setbacks and misconceptions about women directors and women in animation (ie. Brenda Chapman’s problems getting Brace made and then getting fired as director), this has to be seen as a real step forward, in part because it just makes so damn much sense.
The story involved a beautiful, young girl who transforms into Medusa, a gorgon whose gaze turns people to stone and has to deal with looking different.
“In recent years, with movies like ‘Tangled’ and ‘Frozen,’ and not to toot my own horn, the polarity of ‘My Little Pony,’ people are more open to [female protagonists],” Faust told TheWrap. “Just because something is about a girl, that doesn’t mean it’s not for them.”
Go, Lauren, Todd and Holly!
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.