To date, Tangled is the most expensive animated film ever made with a budget of $260 million, and the second most expensive film overall. The film was originally to be Glen Keane’s directorial debut.
Mark Kennedy, Adam Wilson and Melanie Wilson were initially to be the writers, with screenplay by Josann McGibbon and Sara Parriott. Music was to be by Jeanine Tesori, with songs by Amir Khalifa.
Refocused in 2003 to take a more aggressive and hip tack in story, trying to capitalize on the popularity of DreamWorks’ Shrek series.
On April 12, 2007, Dean Wellins was added as co-director. Glen Keane pushed for an animation look that would resemble traditional oil paintings on canvas. Keane wanted to recreate the lunminesent, painterly quality from the painting by French Rococo artist Jean-Honore Fragonard called The Swing. Keane said, “We are using subsurface scattering and global illumination and all of the latest techniques to pull off convincing human characters and rich environment.”
Rapunzel Becomes Tangled
In October 2008, Glen Keane and Dean Wellins stepped down from the project, replaced by Byron Howard and Nathan Greno. They bring the story back to once again follow the original tale more closely.
By early 2010, a new direction was in evidence. First, in Febuary, the name “Tangled” replaced “Rapunzel.” The story took a decidedly more adveturous tack, and added an Errol Flynn-type character. Disney felt that the 222 million dollars that The Princess And The Frog earned at the box office worldwide was not enough. Disney felt that the “Princess effect” was keeping half their potential market away. So this film was refocused to appeal to boys, too, and the name was changed to make it more acceptable to young men.
By the way, that budget of 260 million? The film brought in almost 600 million. Money well spent?