Oscar-winning songwriting duo Benj Pasek and Justin Paul shared with Variety on the Academy Awards red carpet that they would be contributing songs to the new film version of Aladdin, the classic ’90s Disney musical.
Collaborating with one of their musical heroes, Alan Menken, the duo — whose “This is Me” (from The Greatest Showman) was performed by Keala Settle at the Oscars on Sunday night (Mar. 4), and lost to “Remember Me” from Coco for best original song — wrote the lyrics for two songs for the upcoming film, due out next year.
Menken has won the best original song Oscar four times — tying him with Sammy Cahn and Johnny Mercer for most wins in the award’s history — for his work on other Disney films, such as The Little Mermaid, Beauty and the Beast and the original Aladdin film from 1992. Pasek and Paul won the award in 2017, along with Justin Hurwitz, for “City of Stars” from La La Land.
The duo also mentioned prolonged rehearsals, and asking Menken about different Disney characters, like The Little Mermaid‘s Ursula and Ariel. “We’re real excited for this and really thrilled to be a part of the Disney family,” Benj Pasek said.
The Aladdin remake is due out next year, with Will Smith cast as the Genie.
— Variety (@Variety) March 5, 2018