It seems no children\'s story is safe from the jaws of Hollywood, as the first trailer for Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters proves.
Starring Avengers Assemble\'s Jeremy Renner and Prince of Persia\'s Gemma Arterton, the film follows the siblings who almost ended up in a witch\'s oven in the Brothers Grimm fairytale.
In the film, that close encounter only gave the pair a taste for blood, causing them to train in the ways of witch hunting and work together to track down evil women.
Directed and written by Tommy Wirkola, who impressed with his 2009 Nazi zombie film Dead Snow, Hansel and Gretel appears to be capitalising on the recent trend of giving a grown-up twist to children\'s tales, a trick that brought box office success to Snow White and the Huntsman.
Renner, who spent far too long in supporting roles, has stepped up to leading man level. He seems to be in every prospective film franchise this year, starring as Hawkeye in the first Avengers film, as Aaron Cross in the Bourne Legacy and now in this new effort that surely will lead to sequels if it proves a success.
Stylistically the film bears more than a passing resemblance to Hugh Jackman\'s critically derided Van Helsing, while the trailer appears committed to packing as many cliches as possible into a single clip.
In just a couple of minutes we see a lot of walking away from flames in slow motion, Matrix-esque dodging, futuristic/medieval gadgetry and transforming CGI witches.
Shamelessly derviative it may be, but recent releases have shown that the market for big-budget action reimaginings is certainly inviting. It also features Peter Stormare, which is always a good thing.
Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters is released in 2013.