Twenty-one years after the original, Mrs. Doubtfire is due for the Hollywood regurgitation machine. It’s not a remake or any of those re-something cousins for once, so maybe that’s a sign we don’t have to be terrified or massively perturbed? And Robin Williams and director Chris Columbus are both set to return, so there’s a continuity factor? Other than that, we don’t have a whole lot of confidence-inspiring knowledge quite yet. For example: Will Sally Field be back? Pierce Brosnan? Harvey Fierstein, who, if my kindergarten-self’s impeccable taste is still to be trusted, was sensational? Let’s run a quick check …
Yeah, still down with that performance.
Mrs. Doubtfire 2 (working title, created here and now) has a script by the guy who wrote Elf, David Berenbaum. The only films he’s worked on since then are the 2003 Eddie Murphy franchise nonstarter The Haunted Mansion, the 2006 children’s superhero movie Zoom, and the 2008 children’s fantasy The Spiderwick Chronicles. The guy’s on a one-hot-movie-every-10-years average, but Elf also happens to more or less be the best modern addition to the holiday movie pantheon, and that goes a long way in the having-faith-in-a-new-project game.
What about those kids, though, the spawn of Mrs. Euphegenia Doubtfire? Have they stuck to acting in the gulf between 1993 and now? Let’s see …
Lisa Jakub, Daniel Hillard’s eldest daughter: yes. She did Independence Day and … nothing else major. She’s now 35 years old.
Matthew Lawrence, Hillard’s son: going strong. He’s done a few TV series (Brotherly Love, Boy Meets World) and a Rob Schneider movie. Today he’s 34.
And Mara Wilson, Hillard’s adorable young daughter: sort of back at it after a long hiatus. She went on to do the Miracle on 34th Street remake and Matilda, but finished the ’90s without any other major projects. Then she went off the IMDb grid from 2000 to 2011, and since then only has two credits: one for voice-acting, one for a short film. Today she’s 26.
May the deities of cinema be kind to this one. Jumanji’s already being remade. We don’t need another 1990s-era Robin Williams classic getting tarnished.
UPDATE: Well, it looks like Mara Wilson is definitely not down for a sequel: