Disney to turn this ‘Fantasia’ sequence into live-action film

Um... why not?


Aja Romano

Internet Culture

Published Jun 3, 2015   Updated Mar 1, 2020, 2:22 am CST

Undaunted in its quest to revisit as many of its animated classics as it can in order to generate hugely successful live-action remakes, Disney has now entered its darkest territory yet: a live-action adaptation of the Night on Bald Mountain sequence from Fantasia.

Even if you’ve never seen Fantasia, you’re probably familiar with one of its most iconic images—a sleek, massive black demon with an appearance like a gargoyle, looming over the countryside and presiding over the partying souls of the damned. 


He’s basically the DJ at a demented satanic rave with music by Russian classical composer Modest Mussorgsky—who wrote the piece, “Night on Bald Mountain,” that inspired the Disney version.

But did you know that the demon has a name? It’s Chernobog, and he’s actually a dark god from Slavic folklore—though his importance seems to have been exaggerated in modern popular literature and fantasy. He recently made an underwhelming appearance for an episode of Disney’s Once Upon a Time, only to be rapidly dispatched as a villain of the week. 

There’s no word on what the plot of the adaptation will be, but judging by the way Disney’s live-action remakes have gone so far, there’ll be plenty of original material and sympathetic backstory to explain how Chernobog wound up alone on the mountain serving as a satanic rave DJ.

The screenplay will be written by Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless, who’ve penned a number of upcoming remakes, including Dracula Untold and the TV reboot of Lost in Space, as well as upcoming original fantasies The Last Witch Hunter and The Gods of Egypt

The project marks the 11th live-action project from Walt Disney Pictures based of one of its previous animated favorites. It’s also the second Fantasia sequence to be animated after 2010’s The Sorcerer’s Apprentice.

Presumably, after Disney has gone through the pantheon of its animated films, it can canvass the remainder of unadapted sequences from Fantasia and Fantasia 2000

In the meantime, you can enjoy the original—which will probably remain the scariest—version of Night on Bald Mountain.

Screengrab via Netflix

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*First Published: Jun 3, 2015, 10:26 pm CDT