Theatre News

New The Wizard of Oz film in the works with Watchmen director attached

Nicole Kassell is set to direct the adaptation

The Wizard of Oz
1939's The Wizard of Oz
© Warner Bros., Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons

After last week's hype around the upcoming Wicked film finding a new director in Jon M Chu, we honestly didn't expect to be reporting on a fresh Wizard of Oz film so soon.

Deadline is reporting that Nicole Kassell, who recently oversaw the critically acclaimed series of Watchmen on HBO, is now set to direct The Wonderful Wizard of Oz'' for New Line Cinema.

The film will be inspired by L Frank Baum's 1900 book The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, as well as the subsequent 13 Oz books. As it is being produced by WarnerMedia, the upcoming film will also have access to elements such as the Ruby Slippers, though Kassell has told audiences to expect a "fresh take" on the much-loved tale.

While not a remake of the iconic 1939 musical film, as mentioned, elements of that silver screen classic may well find themselves brought into Kassell's upcoming feature, which is yet to find a release date. We do not know if musical numbers will appear.

What is particularly notable is that Marc Platt will produce the film , while also producing the new Wicked movie (Platt is currently working on projects such as Dear Evan Hansen, set to be released in September). So Platt will be following two yellow brick roads at the same time, though from very different angles! Arguably having the same producer attached may allow the films to sit neatly next to one another, rather than stepping on each others' slippers.

An upcoming animated version of The Wizard of Oz, told from the perspective of Toto, was reported on early last year.

Andrew Lloyd Webber and Tim Rice's The Wizard of Oz is also set to be staged at Curve in Leicester this Christmas, after being postponed due to the pandemic.

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