Another trip down the yellow brick road.
70 years ago, The Wizard of Oz (1939) set the bar in becoming one of the most recognized and beloved films of all time. Yesterday, British tabloid Daily Express announced that a sequel to the much-loved classic could be in the works as of next year. So far, the actress rumored to step into Judy Garland’s ruby slippers is 15-year-old Dakota Fanning. Although the original is known for its songs and musical numbers, a Warner Bros. executive said that the next installment will take a step back from the musical genre and become “darker and more action packed.”
Originally based on author L.Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, this ‘sequel’ will not be adapted from one of his numerous Oz based novels but will be an original screenplay. It is rumored that Fanning will play Dorothy Gale’s granddaughter, stepping into the land of Oz 70 years after her grandmother’s original journey. This particular Oz story is the one that Todd McFarlane (yep, Todd “Spawn” McFarlane) has been planning for Warner Bros. since 2007.
So far, the Oz story has spun countless of versions, including one with Muppets, one with a Sci-Fi twist (Tin Man starring Zooey Deschanel) and let’s not forget the original Oz sequel, Return to Oz (1985) starring Fairuza Balk.
What many fans are wondering is if this sequel will work. Over the last decade, it has become something of a fad in Hollywood to see which films are expendable for remake. The word expendable is used on account that many of these so-called “remakes” have failed to live up to their originals. Practically every horror movie franchise has been remade and has become a game in Hollywood as to which will be remade next.
However, films like Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland have critics and fans buzzing. A new vision, a new story and a new generation could make this rumored Oz nonsense a great idea.