In a teaser-opening sequence boasting both a yawning cat and a wall of ticking clocks, we’re introduced to Hanks as Geppetto, i.e. the beloved wood-carving character who builds the title puppett/boy. On Pinocchio duty for this live action re-imagining—directed by Robert Zemeckis of previous Hanks hits like Forrest Gump and Cast Away—is Benjamin Evan Ainsworth.
The full cast also features Cynthia Erivo as the Blue Fairy, Lorraine Bracco as Sofia the Seagull, Keegan-Michael Key as Honest John, Joseph Gordon-Levitt as Jiminy Cricket, and Luke Evans as the Coachman.
This latest iteration of the Pinocchio story is set to premiere on Disney+ on Sept. 8, a date that also marks the launch of the worldwide Disney+ Day celebration. The global event will be followed later that month by the D23 Expo in Anaheim.
Pinocchio arrives during a particularly prolific time for Hanks, who will next month be seen in Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis biopic as the singer’s notorious manager Colonel Tom Parker. Also expected this year is the Hanks-led A Man Called Otto, directed by World War Z’s Marc Forster. Reports from February had the film on the calendar for a Christmas-timed release. Hanks is joined in Forster’s Fredrik Backman adaptation by Rachel Keller and Mike Birbiglia, among others.