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Benj Pasek and Justin Paul Join the Team for Disney's New Aladdin Film

The Dear Evan Hansen songwriters will join Alan Menken in writing lyrics for the live-action adaptation.

Benj Pasek and Justin Paul will join Alan Menken as lyricists for the upcoming Disney remake of Aladdin.
(© David Gordon)

More information was recently announced about Disney's upcoming live-action adaptation of Aladdin, according to published reports. At last weekend's D23 Expo, Aladdin songwriter Alan Menken announced that Oscar- and Tony-winning songwriting team Benj Pasek and Justin Paul (Dear Evan Hansen, La La Land) will join him in writing lyrics for the new version of the film.

Also announced over the weekend, Disney named Will Smith, Naomi Scott, and Mena Massoud as the stars of the movie, in the roles of the Genie, Princess Jasmine, and Aladdin, respectively. Guy Ritchie will direct the film, with a screenplay by John August.

Aladdin was originally released in 1992, featuring music by Alan Menken and lyrics by Howard Ashman and Tim Rice. The cast of voices included Scott Weinger (Aladdin), Robin Williams (Genie), Jonathan Freeman (Jafar), and Linda Larkin (Jasmine), with Tony winner Lea Salonga lending the singing voice of Jasmine.

The stage musical Aladdin opened at Broadway's New Amsterdam Theatre on March 20, 2014, with Jonathan Freeman reprising his original performance as Jafar. The production earned five Tony nominations, including Best Musical and Best Original Score.