Yet Another Wizard of Oz Adaptation in the Works
Posted 12.20.10 by BrentJS
The proliferation of movie sequels, prequels, requels and reboots over the years has resulted in the declaration that original ideas in Hollywood are dead by more than a few cynical cinema chroniclers. Not that those cynics need any more ammunition for their argument considering that this weekend's top three movies are a sequel to a movie from 1982 (Tron: Legacy), an adaptation of a cartoon that first debuted in 1958 (Yogi Bear), and the third chapter in a movie franchise adaptation of a book series originally published in the '50s (The Chronicles of Narnia: Voyage of the Dawn Treader), but it now appears that yet another adaptation of the Wizard of Oz books by famed author L. Frank Baum is in the works.
Vanguard Films is developing a CG/stop-motion Oz adaptation titled Oz Wars that will be directed by Mike Johnson, who co-directed Corpse Bride with Tim Burton, from a script by Rob Moreland (Space Chimps) and Athena Gam. According to Variety, the movie will take place in a contemporary setting, "with Dorothy caught up in a whirlwind of warrior witches, black magic, martial arts and monsters." Vanguard chief John Williams called the movie an "animated action-adventure story" that's "not just for kids."
The Land of Oz will be reimagined using stop-motion to create a world that's dark, slick, sexy and dangerous.
Based on the descriptions of Oz Wars, the project sounds eerily similar to the "twisted" Oz adaptation that Spawn creator and adult toy manufacturer Todd McFarlane is supposedly developing with screenwriter Josh Olson (A History of Violence). Other Oz adaptations that are in the works include Surrender Dorothy, a sequel to The Wizard of Oz written by
Zach Helm (Stranger Than Fiction) that has Drew Barrymore attached to direct and star, and Oz: The Great and Powerful, a prequel to The Wizard of Oz that has Sam Raimi (Spider-Man) signed on to direct. Robert Zemeckis was in even in "early talks" to direct a live-action remake of The Wizard of Oz, but has since said that he is not interested in the project.
Oh, great and powerful Wizard, how about an original idea?