What are the best Disney remakes? Here’s how each remake is rated

Disney’s live-action film “The Little Mermaid” is breaking records: the film has become one of the most-watched movie premieres in the history of Disney+, the Walt Disney company announced last week.

The remake of the 1989 animated classic racked up a whopping 16 million views in its first five days of broadcast.

Meanwhile, Disney’s upcoming remake of Snow White is getting some backlash online, with some accusing the unreleased film of being “too woke.”

Snow White, scheduled for release in March 2024, is the latest in a seemingly endless stream of live-action remakes.

Disney has been releasing at least one animated film adaptation every year for nearly a decade now, and it looks like the filmmakers have no intention of stopping anytime soon.

Disney can count on its adaptations to consistently attract large crowds and make a lot of money, but audience reactions aren’t always so predictable.

Here’s a list of all the Disney remakes, ranked from best to worst based on audience scores on Rotten Tomatoes, as well as a list of upcoming Disney remakes.

1. “Cruella” (2021)

Audience rating: 97%.

Cruella isn’t technically a remake, but we’re including it on this list because it’s an adaptation of the original 1961 cartoon, One Hundred and One Dalmatians.

The film, starring Emma Stone as Cruella de Vil, was praised by both audiences and critics and even won an Oscar in 2022 for Best Costume Design.

2. “The Little Mermaid” (2023)

Audience rating: 94%.

The 2023 remake of The Little Mermaid (1989) was a huge success at the box office, with critics praising Halle Bailey’s portrayal of Ariel as the highlight of the film.

The film also features new music composed by Alan Menken and Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda.

3. “Aladdin” (2019)

Audience rating: 94%.

Although the film was not well received by critics, Aladdin tied with The Little Mermaid with a 94% audience score. To help set the record straight, we looked at both films’ IMDb ratings: Aladdin scores a 6.9 out of 10 and The Little Mermaid scores a 7.2.

A reboot of the 1992 animated film, it stars Will Smith as the Genie, Naomi Scott and Mena Massoud as Jasmine and Aladdin, respectively.

4. The Lion King (2019)

Audience rating: 88%.

This remake of the 1994 animated classic received generally positive reviews, but it was at the box office where it really shined. According to ScreenRant, The Lion King made more money at the box office than any other Disney remake: an incredible $1.6 billion worldwide.

While audiences seemed to enjoy the film, some critics were unimpressed, saying it was essentially just a frame-by-frame CGI copy of the 1994 original.

5. The Jungle Book (2016)

Audience rating: 86%.

Jon Favreau, who later adapted The Lion King, also adapted the 1967 animated film The Jungle Book.

With a 94% critic score on Rotten Tomatoes, the film is Disney’s highest-rated reboot of all time. The film’s impressive combination of CGI and live action earned it an Oscar for Best Visual Effects in 2017.

It should be noted that in 1994, Disney released the live-action film The Jungle Book, which scored 56% of the audience, although it did not live up to the 2016 film.

6. Christopher Robin (2018)

Audience rating: 83%.

Christopher Robin is an adaptation of Disney’s Winnie the Pooh franchise, the first feature film of which was released in 1977: The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh. The film was well received by critics and was even nominated for an Oscar in 2019 for Best Visual Effects.

The film stars Ewan McGregor and Hayley Atwell.

7. “Beauty and the Beast” (2017)

Audience rating: 80%.

Beauty and the Beast, starring Emma Watson as Belle, is Disney’s second highest-grossing live-action remake after The Lion King. The film earned an incredible $1.264 billion worldwide.

The film also received two Oscar nominations in 2018 for Best Production Design and Best Costume Design.

8. “Cinderella” (2015)

Audience rating: 78%.

A remake of Disney’s 1950 animated film Cinderella, it is considered by critics to be one of Disney’s best live-action films. Cinderella particularly stands out for its music and costume design, and even received an Oscar nomination for Best Costume Design in 2016.

Lily James, Richard Madden, Cate Blanchett and Helena Bonham Carter star in the film, bringing depth and emotion to traditionally flat characters.

9. Pete’s Dragon (2016)

Audience rating: 72%.

We’ve included this remake on the list even though the 1977 film it was based on was not fully animated. The original Pete’s Dragon was a mix of hand-drawn animation and live-action that received mediocre to poor reviews from critics and audiences, but the 2016 remake, directed by David Lowery, took the story to the next level with high-quality production, a CGI dragon, and performances from stars like Robert Redford and Bryce Dallas Howard.

10. Maleficent (2014)

Audience rating: 70%.

This reimagining of the 1959 Disney classic Sleeping Beauty is told from the point of view of the evil fairy Maleficent, played by Angelina Jolie. It had below-average ratings, but Disney considered it enough of a success to greenlight a sequel, Maleficent: Mistress of Evil, which was released in 2019.

11. “Alice in Wonderland” (2010)

Audience rating: 55%.

Tim Burton’s take on 1951’s Alice in Wonderland is visually stunning, but critics and audiences grew bored with other elements of the film. The film, starring Johnny Depp, Mia Wasikowska, Helena Bonham Carter and Anne Hathaway, generated enough interest among audiences to warrant a sequel, Alice Through the Looking Glass, in 2016, which received a dismal 29% rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes.

12. “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” (2010).

Audience rating: 53%.

Technically, this live-action film is a loose adaptation of a segment from the animated film. In 1936, Walt Disney had the idea to create an animated short called The Sorcerer’s Apprentice, which eventually grew into a larger project that became the 1940 Disney classic Fantasia. In the 2010 film, Nicolas Cage plays a sorcerer who prepares a teenager to inherit “Merlin’s powers.” As one might expect, critics and audiences did not react too favorably to the film.

13. ‘Lady and the Tramp’ (2019)

Audience rating: 50%

The remake of the beloved 1955 animated classic received little fanfare when it began streaming on Disney+ in November 2019.

The film stars real-life rescue dogs, voiced by Tessa Thompson and Justin Theroux.

14. “Dumbo” (2019)

Audience rating: 48%.

Dumbo was another Tim Burton film that, like his adaptation of Alice in Wonderland, didn’t go as planned. The reboot of the 1941 animated film not only wasn’t well received by critics, but it also didn’t do as well at the box office as Disney expected.

It turns out that Dumbo is even more sad and disturbing in live action.

15. Mulan (2020)

Audience rating: 46%.

The remake of the 1998 animated film received mostly positive reviews from critics, but audiences were less impressed.

The film also faced some criticism for filming in Xinjiang, a region of China accused of human rights abuses, the Deseret News previously reported.

16. ‘101 Dalmatians’ (1996)

Audience rating: 40%.

101 Dalmatians is considered one of the worst Disney reboots of all time. The sequel, 102 Dalmatians, performed even worse, with an audience share of 32%, indicating that the 1961 original is hard to beat.

According to Mirror Online, the film stars Glenn Close as Cruella De Vil, Jeff Daniels as Roger and approximately 230 live puppies.

17. ‘Pinocchio’ (2022)

Audience rating: 27%.

The 1940 film adaptation, which features a creepy puppet bordering the uncanny valley, was not well received by audiences (to put it mildly).

The film, starring Tom Hanks as Geppetto, had the misfortune of being released the same year as Guillermo del Toro’s Pinocchio, the more critically acclaimed version of the story.

18. “Peter Pan and Wendy” (2023)

Audience rating: 11%.

An adaptation of the 1953 animated film, released in 2023, it has the honor of being audiences’ least-loved Disney remake to date.

It also has the largest gap between critics’ scores and audience scores on Rotten Tomatoes of any live-action Disney remake, with 64% of critics’ scores and a measly 11% of audience scores.

Even Jude Law as Captain Hook couldn’t save this movie.

Upcoming remakes of Disney cartoons

Below is a list of Disney’s upcoming live-action film remakes and their release dates, according to ScreenRant:

  • “Snow White” – March 22, 2024
  • “Lilo and Stitch” – May 10, 2024
  • “Mufasa: The Lion King” – July 2024.
  • “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” – In development.
  • “Bambi” – In development.
  • “Robin Hood” – In development.
  • “Hercules” – In development.
  • “Aristocats” – In development.
  • “Moana” – In development.
  • “The Sword in the Stone” – In development.

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