Oz in the News 7.18.12

‘Oz: The Great and Powerful’ Photos Show Off Sam Raimi’s Dazzlingly Colorful Fantasyland  When Disney debuted footage from Sam Raimi‘s Oz: The Great and Powerful last weekend at Comic Con, there were more than a few comparisons to Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland, based in large part upon one factor common to both movies. That would be the work of production designer Robert Stromberg, who also filled that role on Avatar, and is now directing Angelina Jolie in Maleficent.

Stephen Daldry Courted to Direct ‘Wicked’  Daldry’s potential involvement in the Wicked movie is more unexpected, as development on it has been fairly slow-moving over the past few years. Producer Marc Platt and Universal initially planned to turn Maguire’s book into a film several years ago, but decided to bring it to the stage first instead. Since its opening in 2003, it’s become one of the highest-grossing Broadway musicals of all time, and continues to top the charts on a weekly basis. The show explores the backstory of Elphaba, the misunderstood Wicked Witch of the West, and retells some of the events of The Wizard of Oz from her perspective.  Universal’s Wicked picture should not be confused with the Salma Hayek-produced non-musical miniseries brewing over at ABC, which will hew more closely to Maguire’s book than to the Broadway show. While the Frank L. Baum story has been beloved for decades, it seems particularly in vogue at the moment. Sam Raimi’s Wizard-centric prequel Oz: The Great and Powerful debuted a trailer at Comic-Con this week, while E! announced Dorothy just a couple of months ago.

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